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'Sherlock' Andrew Scott interview: 'Moriarty is unpredictable'
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rakspatel wrote in mycroft_brolly

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Cut and pasted from the Digital Spy website:

The first series of Sherlock ended on a nail-bitting cliffhanger - Sherlock shared a poolside confrontation with his deadly nemesis Jim Moriarty and the screen cruelly cut to black with the two men locked in an explosive impasse...

Digital Spy took a trip to Cardiff earlier this year - while filming on series two was still ongoing - and spoke to the man who brings Moriarty to life, Irish actor Andrew Scott.

After making such a big entrance as Moriarty, are you worried about living up to the hype?

"I think what's important to sustain is the feeling that you don't know what you're going to get when you see him. I think that's what series one very brilliantly set up - that you don't quite know who's going to appear.

"I think that feeling should be maintained in series two, even though you do know who's going to appear. You know who he is, but I don't think you should ever feel that you know exactly what he's going to do.

"In a sense, that's the challenge for series two - that [mystery] of what he's going to be like. Is he going to be scary or is he going to be in a good mood? That for me is the most important thing - to keep that sense of unpredictability about him."

How long did it take you to develop your take on Moriarty?

"I didn't really work it out - it was very well-written. We had a day to shoot the swimming pool stuff, so there was quite a lot of time to play around with it. It was very important to me that he would be playful. I didn't really work out too much how he was going to be, apart from knowing that he needed to be funny and scary!

"What tends to happen sometimes is that you plan a little bit too much. You wrap up what you're going to do with a nice little bow and it's all prepared. [But] I think an audience can really sense if something's thought out a little bit too much.

Were you keen to bring some humor to the part?

"I find any sort of acting that doesn't have any humor in it is mind-numbingly boring. 'Serious acting' is the kind of acting that I don't ever respond to. I think it's important to always be a bit playful, but particularly for this [role]."

What is the core of Sherlock and Moriarty's relationship?

"I think it's 'the great game' and there's a great sense that the two of them enjoy it, absolutely. The fun of it is that you shouldn't have a [back-story]. I hate being spoon-fed things, in that sense. I think we shouldn't know... I don't think the question should ever be answered."

Conan Doyle's 'The Final Problem' famously ends badly for Moriarty - did you worry about filming an adaptation of that story?

"No, I didn't! Not at all. It's a brilliant script. You never know what's going to happen!"

How familiar were you with the original stories before being cast?

"I wasn't as familiar as the others were. Of course, I was familiar with 'The Hound...' and the Reichenbach thing, but not really [beyond that].

"I read a lot last year - this year I just read the scripts. In anything I've ever done, I've never done any research. That's not out of laziness - I do read the script an awful lot!"

Why do you think Moriarty's brief appearance made such a big impact?

"I think it's because there was such a fantastic build-up to it. The character had a presence and I suppose there was a sort of guessing game about who would be playing the part. I think that's part of the fun of it."

Read the whole interview here (it is deliciously long!):

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Unpredictable, definitely! It's the not knowing what he's going to do, or how he's going to react that makes him so attractive. Or maybe that's just because it's Andrew playing him.

This is a very interesting interview.

Yes, it is an interesting interview. It is the first in-depth interview that I have seen Andrew give on Sherlock - on the Jim Moriarty character and his motivation.

The attractiveness, magnetism and unpredictability of the character is in the writing; but it is taken to a whole new level because it is Andrew playing him!

I wonder if Moriarty might survive Reichenbach in the Moffat/Gatiss SH universe? This Andrew Scott incarnation of the character is far too good to do away with so soon! Although undoubtedly we'll be left wondering whether either Sherlock or Jim has survived whatever 'fall' befalls them, I hope for a third series with more Moriarty. Sherlock Holmes needs the menace of his nemesis. :-)

As I have already said, I have a gut feeling that this second series is the final series for Sherlock. I think both Sherlock and Jim will die at Reichenbach.

But, if Sherlock returns, I am in total agreement with you, Jim (ie Andrew Scott) has to come back from the dead too.

"I hope for a third series with more Moriarty. Sherlock Holmes needs the menace of his nemesis". Seconded!

I'm trying to remain hopeful that there will be a third series. Both Martin Freeman himself and his Hobbit director Peter Jackson are on the record to state that Martin's contract was negotiated to allow two breaks to film Sherlock in the UK, and he's only used one of them so far!

Of course series two will conclude with the possibility that both Jim and Sherlock are gone for good. And I do see that if they are brought back for a third series then there is no natural 'ending' to the adventures any more. Dammit – why did they cover the Reichenbach story so soon! Of course ACD himself wrote many more SH stories after 'The Final Problem' than he ever did before. I don't doubt that Moffat and Gatiss have enough ideas to continue ad infinitum. I suppose it will rest entirely upon whether Benedict can be persuaded to revive the role...

And the whole nation awaits Benedict's decision on that one!

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