latenightwithjimmyfallon Michael tells Jimmy about his dad’s hobby as a celebrity impersonator
and discusses his role on “Masters of Sex.” (September 27)
tv.shut.net Whether you know him from stage work, acclaimed films like The Queen or Frost/Nixon or going for the silly with his arc on 30 Rock, Michael Sheen has always been an actor we connect with, reveling in the journey he and his characters take us on.
In his new role as Dr. William Masters in Showtime's Masters Of Sex, Sheen must close himself off emotionally because his character was a man of greatness in his studies of sex but, ironically, had personal problems connecting with others emotionally. Especially when it came to his wife.
The ambitious series - based on Thomas Maier's biography, Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson - dives into the early days of Masters' study, the start of his relationship with Johnson (played by Lizzy Caplan, below with Sheen) and the intricacies of the study itself. The series also stars Beau Bridges, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Teddy Sears and Nick D'Agosto
I sat down with Sheen recently to discuss how this character is different from past roles and what we'll find out about the past that shaped Masters into his adult self.
TV Fanatic: You’ve done a little bit of everything in your career so what is it when you read a script or talking to a director or writer that makes you say, ‘Yes, I want to do this?’
Michael Sheen: I guess it’s a whole combination of things, really, and it also depends on where you’re at in your life, as well, and what you feel you have to offer. I’ve come across scripts and parts that I thought were really good, but I ultimately felt like, 'You know what? I think someone else would be better at doing this than me. I’d like to have a go at it, but I feel like it’s not the right time for me to do this. '
I played Hamlet just before we started doing this, at the age of 42, and I’d been asked to play Hamlet many times throughout my career but it didn’t resonate. It didn’t connect. I can see that it’s a great part and it’s a great play and all that. I think the right thing comes along at the right time and part of the talent for having talent, then, is knowing what is the right thing to do at the right time, for you, and this was definitely that, for all kinds of reasons.
So, the script itself I really liked but it was a big risk because you’re essentially agreeing to commit to something possibly for years and years of your life. Maybe something that everyone will always identify you with and that’s a big, big thing. And it’s five months of the year, so it’s a big time commitment and you’re having to go off one little 50-minute episode, when even the people that are creating it don’t know what’s going to happen. So, there’s no guarantee. So, it was a big commitment, but all the different circumstances aligned, and it felt the right thing to do at the right time for me in my life and career. More at source
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