Matthew Goode interview: ‘The Offer’
Few actors this year took as big of a swing and connected as hard as Matthew Goode. On the Paramount+ limited series “The Offer,” the British actor plays legendary Paramount production boss and all-around raconteur Robert Evans and nails Evans’s recognizable accent and devil-may-care vibe with aplomb. The performance is so strong that Goode, an Emmy Award nominee for “The Crown,” has earned some of the best reviews of his career for the project – even from his normally picky friends.
“I’m not on social media – which is probably a very good thing – so I got some nice feedback off of my friends because they haven’t seen me doing anything like that,” Goode tells Gold Derby in an exclusive video interview. “They were all like, ‘Jesus, you’re actually alright.’ Thanks, guys.”
Based on the experiences Al Ruddy (played by Miles Teller) had as the producer of “The Godfather,” the 10-episode series recalls the ups and downs on the road to creating one of the greatest motion pictures of all time. It was Evans who ultimately greenlit the project, and as the series shows, the mogul went through his own journey during the film’s production – including his high-profile split from actress Ali McGraw.
Goode says when he initially got the script for “The Offer,” producers were looking at him for another role. “It had a lot of buzz around town,” he says of the project, which was created by Michael Tolkin (“The Player”), who wrote many of the episodes. Goode never heard back about the initial role, but two months later he got a call from his representatives while playing golf.
“They said, ‘You’re playing Bob Evans. We’re not asking why. Clearly, a big star has pulled out or something, but it’s you. And we said yes on your behalf,’” Goode recalls with customary self-deprecation. “It was quite daunting, but it’s good when you get to your mid-40s to have a bit of fear in your belly and to have something that is a challenge. You don’t always necessarily get stretched with every particular role you have, it doesn’t mean that you don’t put the same amount of effort into it. But this one required quite a lot of work.”
Besides, he adds, “I think as much as I was scared of playing Bob, I was just like, ‘Well, it could be worse. I could be playing Brando.” (Justin Chambers plays Marlon Brando on “The Offer,” another strong performance on a show full of outstanding work.)
Production on “The Offer” lasted almost seven months and Goode has spent the last two months doing press for the project, which wraps up on June 16. His most recent trip to Los Angeles was his last, for now, done in conjunction with “The Offer.” (Emmy Award nominations, however, are announced on July 12.) With that in mind, Goode decided to end this chapter of his career with another “pilgrimage” to Evans’s iconic Hollywood home – which is now owned by Warner Bros. Discovery boss David Zaslav. Goode says he started the journey of playing Evans by visiting the house as well.
“Once again, I couldn’t get into the house,” he says. “I tried. I just desperately wanted to see the swimming pool and the tennis court. But I couldn’t get in, so once again I said a couple of words and buggered off. But yeah, I feel like it was a real gift to get [this role]…. To be cast without having an audition really puts more pressure on you because you really haven’t proved yourself. And that’s quite a big swing for the producers. It’s not like any of my other work and said, ‘Oh, yeah, he’s a shoo-in.’ So I think I’ve gained a lot of confidence from someone having that much faith in me. And hopefully, I haven’t messed it up.”
All episodes of “The Offer” are streaming on Paramount+.