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Monday, January 3, 2022

Clancy Brown Talks About The Events of Episode 9 ‘The Family Business’, Kurt Caldwell's Fate, And More

The man who portrays Kurt Caldwell discusses episode 9 "The Family Business".


Clancy Brown, one of the co-stars of Dexter: New Blood spoke by phone with Carly Lane from website Collider about the events of last night's penultimate episode titled "The Family Business". How he was approached to take the role of Kurt? What it was like to face off against Michael C. Hall on-screen? Find out more, below!

Collider: In terms of the role itself, how much did you know prior to joining the show? Or was it a matter of just hearing that there was a Dexter revival and thinking that you wanted to be involved?

Clancy Brown: I didn't know there was a Dexter revival until Clyde came to me with the possibility. So I think they were keeping that under wraps pretty well until they had it all set up and ready to go. The way I heard Clyde and Michael tell it is that, there had been gestures to do the revival to sort of fix what they thought they broke a little bit, I guess, the last few seasons. Personally, I had no problem with the way it ended. I thought it was just fine. But I think Michael had to get some distance on it. Clyde had to get some distance on it. I know they'd been trying to sort of figure out how to do it for a while, and I was glad that they decided to come around and do it. I think you had to wait, right? You had to wait until Harrison was old enough to be part of it, I suppose.

So I thought that was a good idea. When they came to me, I went back and started watching. I watched it early on and then I kind of stopped watching it after a while. And then I watched the last season and I remember the stigma. And I enjoyed the last season. I was a huge James Remar fan, so I was kind of bummed when he wasn't involved in this part of it. And then Jennifer does a great job standing in. I think that makes total sense how they've carried on that tradition. And now, it's Jennifer that's doing it. It's just brilliant. Then they sent me the scripts that they had and I thought it was a really good idea. And so had my meetings and then they said, "Yes." So I fooled somebody again. Fooled them all one more time.

Collider: Does it feel like a different experience to join a show like this, that's already come and gone and, like you said, been off the air for a little while and then had this resurrection, so to speak? Does that change how you approach things or is it just another gig?

Clancy Brown: No, it's not just another gig, because it does have its pedigree. That could be a problem if everybody was going back to Miami and all the other cast were going to be there, but the new cast outnumbered the old cast on this one. And I remember asking Michael that question and saying, "Hey, is this weird for you, coming back to this after 10 years and reviving this character and going back to the well?" And he sort of smirked at me and he said, "You know what's weird is that it's not weird to me. I'm stepping right into this and it's pretty easy and I didn't expect it to be."

And plus, they put the team back together. They put the band back together pretty much at the creative shop. So it all had the same feeling. Marcos Siega, he was a familiar director to those guys. I'm not sure if Sandy Bookstaver had done any, but Marcos I know had done a couple and everybody liked Marcos. So it was being well-managed, well-curated, well-constructed, so that makes it a lot easier to step into [it] in a way, because you're already in a boat that floats.


Collider: You touched on one of the things I definitely wanted to talk to you about, which is working with Michael. Because you've joined this pantheon of actors who have become kind of the big villain of the season, like John Lithgow or Jimmy Smits. Getting to face off against Michael this time, does anything stand out in your memory from working with him?

Clancy Brown: Oh, working with him? I'd say working with him is a joy. I don't think there's any actor that won't tell you the same thing. He's really fun to work with. He's very present. He's, he's awfully good. It was a great, fun show to work on and no small measure because he's such a generous and complete actor. I mean, so easy that way.

I love that you called it a pantheon. Certainly, the greatest among all those is probably Lithgow, but it was a pretty good group of knuckleheads to face off against. And I had friends among all of them, a couple of people that I knew, and so they all had good things to say about the experience. Yeah, it's fun. I mean, I don't think about what John did. I don't think about those characters and those bad guys, what they ended up being. I felt the first guy, whose name escapes me that played his brother that was just the Ice Truck Killer. [He] was just terrific, that guy. If I had thought about it at all, it was like I just hope I measured up. To any of those guys. They were all so good. A lot of that is also the writing. The writing is really terrific.

Collider: The thing with Kurt, too, is he feels like the guy that everybody in town knows, the big guy, but then obviously he has this darker underbelly. And it's fair to say you've played a lot of bad guys before, but was there anything that you found yourself doing differently in terms of research to play Kurt, or maybe in trying to understand him and his motivations?

Clancy Brown: Back in the day when behavioral science units and stuff were really sexy and everybody was doing that work, I did a couple of shows where I was either supposed to be a bad guy or a good guy trying to find the bad guy or whatever it was, but the way they approached those kind of sociopathic and psychopathic roles ... we know about them now. They're part of the culture now. We kind of know these little markers that you have to hit, that there's always some kind of abuse as a child, and there's always some kind of a reason, which is a good thing. That the culture knows there's a reason these people are the way they are.

But we also are pretty familiar now with narcissists and sociopaths and how that can even evolve into psychopathy and all the rest of that. So as long as those things were in the script, then that becomes very easy then. You don't have to find those moments and sneak them in. They're all there. We got Kurt's reason for being the way he was. And we got his ritual. We understood his ritual. It starts to fall off the rails, of course, when Dexter discovers who he is, and it falls off the rails when his son is killed. So there's all those things that send him over the edge that make him not a good serial killer anymore. Because there are good serial killers. That's what the show is about.

But did I do any research? I sort of did. There was a guy up in Alaska that killed women this way, but also? Those are dark paths to go down. I wanted to make sure in the script that he was loved in the town. That whatever his dark side was, whatever his perversion was, was well covered up, was well hidden. And I was kind of relieved that he didn't have any partners in this crime. He didn't have anybody covering up for him. I mean, I guess there was Elric [Kane] that was a henchman in a way, but I don't think Elric was really smart enough to know exactly what was going on. Maybe he was, but we'll never know. So I just wanted to make sure that [Kurt] sincerely cared about the people of the town, and that this was just a dark side, the addiction that he had. That he kept away from everybody.


Collider: A relationship, too, that Kurt seems to have a lot of sincere feeling for is Harrison. Do you think that Kurt always had the thought in the back of his mind that things could turn sort of kill-or-be-killed, and that was the motivation behind him trying to bring Dexter's son under his wing? Or was it more that he really did care for Harrison in his own way, and the plan had to change when he realized Dexter's role in his own son's death?

Clancy Brown: I don't think sociopaths care about anybody, to be honest with you. I don't think Dexter really cares that much about Harrison. I mean, he might try. And I don't think that Kurt really cared that much about Matt. I think they care about what they mean to them in terms of their own existence, in terms of whatever and however it might be accomplished. But I don't think Kurt had any illusions of affection for Harrison. And probably Jack [Alcott] will not agree with that, and maybe Clyde will disagree with it, but I just think these people like this, they're sociopaths. They really don't care about anyone else and they enjoy manipulating them. Sometimes they're really good at it, and I think Kurt has gotten really good at manipulating a lot of his life around his addiction. But I don't think he's a good guy at all. And I don't think Dexter's a good guy, by the way.

Collider: It's what makes the dynamic so interesting, right? Neither of these guys is morally... there's not a lot of gray area here.

Clancy Brown: Yeah. I mean, part of the brilliance of the show is that Michael is such a charismatic actor. He's attractive. He's got all of that. He ticks all the boxes for TV star, movie star, all that stuff. And part of us wants him to get caught. We want him to answer for it. But then the other part of us doesn't want him to get caught because Michael is who he is, has brought what he brought to that show. It's really a great acting job. What he's created, it's quite a monster. It's kind of an amazing thing. I don't think there's anything like it in television or film. The Dexter phenomenon.

Collider: Unfortunately, for your character, he ends up on the business end of Dexter's knife this week.

Clancy Brown: Did you see it? How'd it go? I don't know how they've cut it. I was trying to keep the battle for Harrison going until the very last second.


Collider: It feels very much like a race to see who can beat the other one first scenario, with Kurt going to the cabin versus Dexter and Harrison finding his secret little stash of trophies.

Clancy Brown: Did it surprise you that Molly was in that?

Yes. Very surprising.

Clancy Brown: I know. That's a freak. That's a freak, that one.

Because we think that she's left and been fine. And then, obviously, that's not what happens.

Clancy Brown: I know. That's when I knew he had to die.

Collider: I know you had said you had gotten some scripts, but was it made clear to you that Kurt wasn't going to survive the season?

Clancy Brown: Oh, well, yeah, I mean, it's Dexter. He's not going to survive. We know he's not going to survive. We don't know how, but we know he's not going to make it. The last episode, I don't know what happens in it. That's been completely redacted from me. Which is fine. I'm looking forward to seeing it. But I read through Episode 9. I read up until then. And I think it started to get redacted right after I got killed. It gives me a reason to tune in.

Clancy also talked about his new role in 'John Wick 4' and whether he'd return to do a 'Goon' movie. Click here to read the rest of the interview.


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