Brian Cox has expressed worry over his “Succession” co-star Jeremy Strong’s Method acting in the past, but he was more blunt than over on the topic during a new cover story for “Town & Country” magazine. Cox, who plays the father to Strong’s character on the Emmy-winning HBO series, said point blank about Strong’s Method acting: “Oh, it’s fucking annoying. Don’t get me going on it.”
“He’s a very good actor,” Cox added. “And the rest of the ensemble is all okay with this. But knowing a character and what the character does is only part of the skill set.”
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“He’s still that guy, because he feels if he went somewhere else he’d lose it,” Cox continued. “But he won’t! Strong is talented. He’s fucking gifted. When you’ve got the gift, celebrate the gift. Go back to your trailer and have a hit of marijuana, you know?”
Cox stressed that he wants Strong to relax and not be so committed to the Method process. In the past, Cox has told the press that he fears Strong will burn out early because of Method acting. During an interview on “Late Night With Seth Meyers” last year, he added, “[Jeremy] does get obsessed with the work. And I worry about what it does to him, because if you can’t separate yourself — because you’re dealing with all of this material every day. You can’t live in it. Eventually, you get worn out.”
“Like, to me, Daniel Day-Lewis got worn out at 55 and decided to retire because [he] couldn’t go on doing that every day,” Cox continued at the time. “It’s too consuming. And I do worry about it. But the result — what everyone says about Jeremy — the result is always extraordinary and excellent.”
Oddly enough, Cox’s “Town & Country” interview published on the same day that Strong appeared on the cover of GQ magazine and directly addressed his co-star’s fears about his Method acting. Strong said he never spoken directly with Cox or any of his other “Succession” co-stars about all the headlines his Method acting creates.
“Everyone’s entitled to have their feelings,” Strong said. “I also think Brian Cox, for example, he’s earned the right to say whatever the fuck he wants. There was no need to address that or do damage control… I feel a lot of love for my siblings and my father on the show. And it is like a family in the sense that — and I’m sure they would say this, too — you don’t always like the people that you love. I do always respect them.”
Through all of the complaints about his Method acting, Strong told GQ he’s never once considered changing his approach.
“Am I going to adjust or compromise the way that I’ve worked my whole life and what I believe in? There wasn’t a flicker of doubt about that,” Strong said. “I’m still going to do whatever it takes to serve whatever it is. Which is not to say that that is the same thing as riding roughshod over other people. It has to do with autonomous concentration. It’s a very solitary thing. I think there’s very low impact on others except for what they might want to project onto it and how that might make them feel.”
HBO’s “Succession” returns for Season 4 on March 26.
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