Gary Oldman interview: ‘Slow Horses’

“The material was so good,” declares Oscar winner Gary Oldman while discussing his move from film to the Apple TV+ series “Slow Horses.” “I’ve been a fan of long form TV, limited series. I have been amazed at the level of acting, writing, directing, cinematography on the small screen. It was always my hope. Wouldn’t it be great if something came in and one could have an opportunity to really develop a character rather than have a two-hour window where you tell that story? Unless you’re in a franchise, in some respect, you do get to repeat a character. But really develop a character in different scenarios, in different situations. This came in and I just couldn’t believe my luck.” Watch the exclusive video interview above.

“Slow Horses” is a quick-witted spy thriller that follows a dysfunctional team of MI5 agents and their obnoxious boss, the notorious Jackson Lamb (Oldman). The spies must navigate the espionage world’s smoke and mirrors to defend England from sinister forces. It is based on Mick Herron‘s 2010 novel of the same name.

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While discussing his character of Lamb, Oldman says there is more to the flatulent day drinker than first meets the eye. “We get a sense that he’s maybe just kind of given up,” the actor explains. “He’s just treading water and going through the motions. He gives the impression that he doesn’t care very much, and yet, he probably cares more than most. Some of the slow horses think he’s lazy and he sits on his ass all day in that chair with his feet up on the desk, but the mind is working. And he’s very loyal. He has a great moral compass. He has a disdain for the hypocrisy and self-serving bureaucratic bullshit that is the MI5 establishment.”

“Slow Horses” also stars Jack Lowden as River Cartwright, an up-and-coming MI5 agent who was demoted after a very public training exercise mistake. Oscar nominee Kristin Scott Thomas plays Diana Taverner, the Deputy Director-General of MI5 and head of operations codenamed “Second Desk.” It’s a reunion for Scott Thomas and Oldman, who last worked together on “Darkest Hour.”

Oldman also tells a heartwarming story about his mother, Kathleen, who was “hanging on” until he won an Oscar. “She was nearly 99 and had really never had a serious illness in her life,” he reveals. “I won the Oscar and her health declined. Maybe I’m being romantic about it or being misty-eyed. I think she was hoping and holding on that I would get it. Bringing it home, she was thrilled. It was a quite a magical thing.”

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UPLOADED Jun 1, 2022 8:30 am