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Noah Emmerich on playing federal officers: Couldn’t be further from these characters

New Delhi, Feb 4 (PTI) How “The Americans” star Noah Emmerich became Hollywood’s go-to-guy for roles falling in the law enforcement domain is a question that the actor asks himself “not infrequently” as he believes his own personality is quite different from these characters.

Emmerich, who made a name for himself with performances in movies such as “Beautiful Girls”, “The Truman Show” and “Miracle” (2004), has often found himself essaying characters who don “a badge and a gun”.

His most noteworthy performance was as the cold war era FBI officer Stan Beeman in critically-acclaimed FX series “The Americans”.

He also featured in shows and movies such as “The Hot Zone”, “Space Force”, “The Spy”, “Super 8” and “Pride and Glory”, where again he played men who were positions of authority.

“It’s a question that I ask myself not infrequently — How I ended up becoming the federal agent for hire as an actor? It must have begun with the physicality with my size and my bearing. Somehow we all have these archetypes in our head of what people look like.

“In reality, I feel like I couldn’t really be further from a federal officer or anyone who carries a gun or a badge. But I seem to have played many of these roles along the course of my career,” Emmerich told PTI in a Zoom interview from New York.

The 56-year-old actor, who now features in Apple TV Plus series “Suspicion”, said he is aware how an FBI officer or any other law enforcement official functions as he has observed them up close.

“I spent quite a bit of time in the research phase of these jobs with policemen, FBI agents, DEA agents and all different sorts of emergency workers. So I came to know them pretty well.

“I’ve come to understand the culture, language and the physicality and just the essence of what it is like to live in that life. So I guess that informs my work as an actor,” he added.

Though playing these law enforcement guys has become sort of an easy job for Emmerich, he believes it is now time to take a break from such roles.

“It’s been a lot of years of research and living in that skin, so it comes relatively easily to me now – that mindset, that perspective and that way of understanding the world.

“With every new job, you still have all the information and the experience of the previous job. So hopefully it gets deeper, grows and becomes more realistic each time. But I’m ready for a break from law enforcement. I think I need to play a criminal soon.” In “Suspicion”, Emmerich will once again be seen as an FBI agent. He plays Scott Anderson, who investigates the kidnapping of an American media mogul’s son.

The Apple Original show follows five people — three men and two women — as their lives turned upside down after being identified as possible suspects by London police in the kidnapping.

Emmerich said that “Suspicion” will certainly be liked by the audiences, especially those who loved “The Americans” as there are some similarities between the two shows, especially the theme of identity.

“There is some relationship between the two shows. I mean the dominant connection is this question of identity. This question of ‘who are we’ versus ‘who we are and how people perceive us’. Those questions can be asked in both shows and they’re both central in terms of the tension of the drama…

“It’s interesting to have these characters confront themselves via the police examination because we all kind of fudge ourselves in terms of perception.” Another similarity is the exploration of two opposite Western cultures. While “The Americans” was about the American people and their Russian counterparts, “Suspicion” is a transatlantic show, set in London and New York.

“It’s kind of fun and sexy and international. ‘The Americans’ was also international with two different cultures — America to Russia. Here, it is America and the UK. So there are similarities in a way, and yet it’s a totally different meal.

“So hopefully people that enjoy ‘The Americans’ will enjoy ‘Suspicion’. And even people that didn’t enjoy ‘The Americans’, maybe they will enjoy this show,” he added.

“Suspicion”, show run by Rob Williams, also stars Uma Thurman, Kunal Nayyar, Georgina Campbell, Elyes Gabel, Elizabeth Henstridge, Tom Rhys-Harries and Angel Coulby.

The first two episodes of the series started streaming on Apple TV Plus from Friday. PTI RB BK BK

This report is auto-generated from PTI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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