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Interview with Sebastian Roché of "The
Originals" on The CW 10/31/14
It was great to speak to Sebastian! He's an actor I've
long-admired. He's been on many of my favorite shows,
"Criminal Minds", and many more. He played Jerry Jacks for
years on my favorite soap, "General
Hospital", and recently stopped by there again. He's now
reprising his role as Mikael on "The Originals" and has a
new movie out.
He was very nice and just seems like a great guy. He
answered all of my questions. I wish I had more to ask him!
He was THAT nice. I look forward to seeing him in a lot more
shows and movies.
Here is the our interview. I hope you
If the audio is not streaming well, please right-click on
this link and save it to your computer. It should work
better that way!
Here is the transcribed version by
1. Is it great being back on "The Originals"?
Sebastian Roché: It is great being back. Yeah, yeah, it
really is! It’s great, because the character always had the
potential of being an extraordinary character, and he’s
become quite formidable.
2. How many episodes have you shot or will you be
Sebastian Roché: I shot now in this season, 7 out of 10,
I think, up to now, so it’s exciting. Next episode is going
to be very, very wonderful.
3. They can’t kill you off on any show, can they?
Sebastian Roché: No, they do. Usually they do, but I seem
to come back, yeah! It’s true that with Mikael it took a few
years for me to come back. Same with Jerry Jacks, I guess.
It’s nice that they want to bring me back, though. I do like
the character of Mikael a lot, especially his dysfunctional
relationship with his family. I’m hoping that there’s going
to be more interweaving of family dynamics, instead of just
me wanting to kill everything that moves. There are going to
be a few episodes actually that will explain Mikael’s
character a little more, but I can’t divulge what it’s going
4. I read an interview where you said that it’s quite an
energetic and intense experience for you playing the oldest
Sebastian Roché: It is, actually. It really is. The
character requires an enormous amount of energy to perform.
Basically, it seems that he runs on hatred, you know? Pure
hatred, revenge, and chaos. To manifest that as an actor it
requires a lot of energy -- internal energy where you don't
become over the top. It's a perpetual internal fury. He
seems to be fueled by pure rage, intelligently, but there is
this underlying fury all the time with the character, so
it's quite fascinating to play.
5. I'm glad they brought you back, because when you were
on "Vampire Diaries," I was so disappointed that they seemed
to kill you off so quickly.
Sebastian Roché: Yeah, I totally agree. I have to admit I
was disappointed as well. They were announcing this huge
character, and suddenly, at the drop of a hat, Klaus could
kill him. I'm glad that he's back for a little while. I
don't know how long for, but hopefully, there will be a
little more of Mikael in the future. I don't think he can be
a character that can be in every episode, because it
wouldn't work, because he's so powerful, but I think little
sprinklings of Mikael are always welcome in different
seasons, so hopefully, I'll make it into the next season and
the rest of this season.
6. Like Jerry Jacks, it's nice to have him come back
Sebastian Roché: It's amazing the reaction when I come
back on GH. It's so funny. When I was there before, people
liked me but not as much, I think. I think they like missing
the baddie that he is. Although this time I couldn't come
back for long, because I was very busy. It was fun, and who
knows, maybe Franco has something up his sleeve in the
future. They're bringing a lot of people back from the past.
7. Being around so many of the really young cast members
on "The Originals" --
Sebastian Roché: I am literally Methuselah. [Laughs] I am
older than Noah.
8. I was wondering if you sometimes feel like you're a
thousand years old like Mikael?
Sebastian Roché: I do. At the same time, one of my sons
is older than most of the other cast members, even though he
doesn't look like it, but no, I don't actually. I relate
very much to the cast. It's funny. I have a very youthful
temperament myself. I do feel like the patriarch of the
family, but I get along very well with them. I hang out with
a lot of the cast when I'm in Canada.
9. How does Mikael feel about being controlled by a teen
Sebastian Roché: As you saw, he's not controlled by her
anymore. He wasn't too happy about it. I mean, of course, it
was a means to an end. I think he wished that he would be
free eventually. He was surely angered by the fact that this
young, this little teenager could actually control him, but
I think he probably warily admired her, 'cause he doesn't
really admire anyone but himself, who knows, or maybe
Leonardo DaVinci or other famous people he met during his
10. Are you still on "Scandal"?
Sebastian Roché: No, no. Unfortunately, the stint on
"Scandal" was short-lived. I didn't know whether the
character was going to return. I absolutely love the show,
and I would have loved to have had a longer stint on it. Who
knows, maybe I'll appear on "How to Get Away With Murder."
I'd love to do a little part on that. I have to admit I'm
quite addicted to it. It's a good show.
11. Are there any big differences acting on ABC Primetime
or the CW or Daytime or a movie?
Sebastian Roché: For me, it really doesn't make a
difference. The only difference is the speed at which you
work. On a film, it's a much slower process, depending on
what kind of film you're working on. If you're working on a
bigger studio movie, it is a bit slower; but, I mean, last
Christmas, I did this thriller indie film that is quite good
actually, called "Phantom Halo." We were working very fast.
We made it in less than 18 shooting days. I don't think
there's much difference. They need the same preparation, the
same level of dedication. Yeah, it's pretty much the same as
far as I'm concerned. It's very different approaching the
daytime way of working which is singularly faster, so you
have to get used to that. You have to get very, very
prepared in terms of your lines and relax into it. It's a
little bit daunting at first and scary, because you're not
used to that way of working; but then you get used to it,
and it's great.
12. Do you know if you're going to be returning to GH any
Sebastian Roché: No, I have no idea. [Laughs] I never
know. I never know with any job. It's always a surprise to
me, so who knows.
13. When you used to be on GH regularly, you did have
sort of a romance with Alexis, and I wish they had pursued
that a little bit better, but I guess it was more
interesting to make you into a really bad guy than to have
you be more of a romantic interest. You didn't get to see
her at all this last time.
Sebastian Roché: No, unfortunately, every time I come
back, I barely see her. It would be fun to come back and
sort of a breakthrough window and appear to her, but no, no.
It's a pity, because I adore Nancy as a person, but she's
actually going to do a web show based on "General Hospital,"
I think, that I was a part of, and we had a lot of fun,
doing a panel that I was a part of, and we had a lot of fun
doing it. I don't know when that's coming out. We already
filmed it. It was a panel that was a lot of fun with these
two comedians, Jen Kober & Jackie Kashian, and I were being
interviewed by Nancy. We had a lot of fun. It was great!
I've done a promo sketch for the show which was really
14. You have a movie out right now, "Walk Among the
Tombstones" that looks like a good private eye flick.
Sebastian Roché: It is, actually. It's a really, really,
very good movie. People thought it might be in the vein of
"Taken," but it's very different from that. It's actually
much darker, a slightly slower pace, in a good way. I think
it's a really well-crafted psychological thriller film noir
type all set in New York, very dark film, of course, but I
love the result.
15. How was it working with Liam Neeson, or have you
worked with him before?
Sebastian Roché: No, I'd never worked with him, but it
was an absolute delight working with him. You know, he's a
consummate professional and the nicest guy in the world. I
mean, extremely approachable. Couldn't be nicer to everyone,
a real gentleman. It's always nice to work with great
actors, because most of the time, the greats are the nicest.
You know, working with Anthony Hopkins, Liam Neeson, these
kind of guys, they're amazing, amazing!
16. Do you play a drug dealer?
Sebastian Roché: The thing is I play this Russian drug
dealer, a drug lord, whose daughter's been kidnapped, so
it's not the archetypal bad guy. Basically it could be
anyone whose loved one has been kidnapped. He's basically
going through a terrible, very human dramatic moment in his
life, so that really is the main story for this character.
Throughout the movie, you don't really see the bad guy other
than the fact that he wants to take revenge on the -- he's
basically trying to gather up money that he has lying
around, because of being a drug dealer, but he's a very,
very human character, actually. You would never know he's a
drug lord, apart maybe from the fact that I'm wearing this
track suit from the late '90s, and I have a Russian accent.
17. Have you filmed anything returning to "Supernatural"?
Sebastian Roché: No, nothing on "Supernatural," no!
That's something I would love to do. I would love to go
back, at least for one episode of "Supernatural." It would
be really fun to just go back. I'm really good friends with
all the cast. It would be fantastic to go back to the show,
18. I see you on all of my favorite shows.
Sebastian Roché: Yeah, these last years have been very
good, since I moved to LA, since I went to GH, and since
leaving GH, it's been great! I've been very, very fortunate,
knock on wood. I hope it continues. [Laughs]
19. Do you have anything else coming up?
Sebastian Roché: No, not apart from "The Originals" for
the moment, but I have a few things that might be happening,
but after that, no. That's it!
20. Of all the characters that you've played over the
years, who's your favorite and why?
Sebastian Roché: Ha! Well, it's difficult, because, you
know, my favorite is usually the last one I'm doing, because
I'm really focusing on the character. I really truly loved
playing Balthazar on "Supernatural," but I really loved
playing Mikael on "The Originals" with what is to come. Some
of the best work that I did still might be "Phantom Halo" in
which I play the father to the actors Thomas Brodie-Sangster
and Luke Kleintank. I just saw the movie at a film festival,
and it's really some of my best work, so I'm really happy
about that. I don't know yet about a distribution deal or
what's going to happen with the film, but I really loved
playing that character. Apart from that, Mikael & Balthazar
are two of my favorite characters. They're pretty amazing --
different but quite amazing.
21. Well, you can tell that your efforts are present on
the screen, that's for sure.
Sebastian Roché: Well, good. [Laughs] I'm glad that
people like the characters so much. It's great! It's been
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