Exclusive Interview: FRINGE Star Lance Reddick

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The TV Addict and Lance Reddick in Los Angeles, August 2008

Let me start of by saying that you play two of television’s most mysterious characters. From LOST to FRINGE I have absolutely no idea what you are up to! Do you?
Lance Reddick:
In LOST I can definitely say I have no idea!

Do you get that type of reaction a lot?
A fair amount. I have to admit that not that many people have stopped me about LOST, especially after coming off the last and biggest season of THE WIRE. I get stopped for that a lot more.

Thanks to the critical acclaim of THE WIRE and your guest spot on LOST did you even have to audition for your role on FRINGE?
That was the funny thing about FRINGE. I didn’t have to audition for LOST, but with FRINGE I actually auditioned for a different role.

Which role?
Actually when I first read the script the role I thought I was most right for was Broyles. But when I went to audition they had me read for Charlie. So I didn’t hear anything and a month later I got a call to come back and audition for Broyles. A week later I was in Toronto [shooting the pilot]

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Which coincidentally enough is my hometown! What did you think of the city?
I love Toronto, I’ve actually shot a couple of films up there. But now we’re shooting the show in New York.

Do you think it’s going to be a challenge arranging your schedule so that you can make it back to Hawaii in time for your guest spots on LOST?
As with all things on LOST, I don’t know. I only know that I am going back. But I don’t know when or for how many episodes.

As an actor do you have a preference between working on a gritty realistic show like THE WIRE versus shows with more of a SciFi bent like LOST and FRINGE?
My preference had always been to do gritty realism. But I’ve done so much of it in my career that I find myself now ready to have fun. With both LOST and FRINGE it’s like reading an Alexander Dumas novel. I’m just ready for the action, adventure and fun.

As is the case with most of J.J. Abrams shows, the motivations of your FRINGE character Agent Phillip Broyles aren’t exactly clear. Do you know where your character is heading this season?

Is Broyles good or bad and how much do your character’s motivations affect how you tackle the role?
It’s a little harder for me on LOST. But as far as FRINGE goes, I’m not saying that the creators have told me I’m good. But I’m fairly confident that I’m a good guy.

Of course one of the things I love about all of JJ’s shows is that the line between good and evil is pretty murky.
Exactly. Let me put it this way, there is always more than one dimension.

Do you ever worry that you’re going to accidently spill a massive secret to a member of the press [TV Addict note: Fingers crossed!]. Or have you gotten pretty good, as the British say, at keeping ‘mum’?
Especially on this show, because I know a little more than I do with LOST, I tend to generally be on pins and needles that I’m going to say the wrong thing.

I imagine it wouldn’t be too good a feeling to wake up to a phone call from J.J. saying, “Lance, You ruined the season! I can’t believe you gave away….”
By the same token. I only know as much as I have seen in the latest sript.

Don’t miss the exciting two-hour series premiere of FRINGE on September 9th at 8PM on FOX [CTV in Canada]

Photo Credit: ©2008 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: George Holz/FOX

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