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Serie - Homecoming S02 : Interview Hong Chau & Chris Cooper

  • Par Mulder, Los Angeles, le 18.05.2020

    The critically-acclaimed series Homecoming returns for its second season with a fresh new mystery and an exciting new star, Janelle Monáe. Her character wakes in a rowboat adrift a lake, with no memory of how she got there — or even who she is. Her ensuing search for identity will lead her into the heart of the Geist Group, the unconventional wellness company behind the Homecoming Initiative.

    Q : Hello Hong and Chris, please what can you tell us about your characters in this second season ?

    Chris Cooper : Leonard Geist is the CEO and creator of Geist industries and he is also a kind a botanist. He is following in his father's footsteps. Well his father was a World War two vet so Leonard he looked up to his father they went on survivalist trips out into the wilderness. He learned to appreciation for Botany. He was volunteered for Vietnam was crushed by the uselessness of that war and turned away from, well just wanted to pursue a different a different way of life through this small company that grew to such a giant.

    Hong Chau : An Audrey Temple is we see her in the first scenes and she is a lower level employee in that first season then we see her working at the reception. Tasks she has since she knows Colin Belfast played by Bobby Cannavale. In the second season we're going to see Audrey Temple tries to gain more power, more of a position of leadership and influence within like I S. corporation. It's still a bit of a mystery to us what exactly Geist has a company does. We know that it makes general household products. But we're going to see what else they do and how far their ambitions are reach. Leonard is somebody who could potentially take her under his wing and help her professionally and in her career so she's really trying to impress and endear herself in deer herself professionally to him.

    Q : Hong is the only actress that is also in the season two. What's different for you to work in the first and second season with the completely different story line ?

    Hong Chau : No it wasn't when I signed up for the first season it was with the understanding that I would come back my character Audrey Temple would come back as a larger of further explored character so I knew going into it that she wouldn't just be a lowly receptionist the entire time and that really interested me. I was ready to take that leap of faith writers are scripts for season one was so great I had listened to the original podcast and was very impressed by their ability to tell a such an engaging story. It reminded me of the old radio that we used to listen. That we used to have and they were so engrossing and it's really just our sitting is similar to the experience of cedar just sitting in a dark space and only connecting to this to the voice of the actors and that that was mainly what season one was. In season two I think the writers can delight really wanted to challenge themselves and blow up the world and see moreover from the characters outside of the workplace. We see with Janelle and Stephan stuffs on characters. Where all of these different story elements and details that come up where we don't quite know where how it all ties together, we do at the end but good Micah and Eli really did a great job this season of teasing those are little details and get some information throughout its.

    Q : Hello, congratulations to you both .What does playing a character and you know in this one as opposed to a character in a movie and items of experiences since you can you know explore air through different episodes and you know make it like look out at how it involves us while telling me what's your perception of it ?

    Chris Cooper : My perception Is no different. this is seven episodes half hour that gives us what three and a half hours. What is that a feature and a half two features I just don't see any difference. Yeah it does. It in the way I work. No difference at all.

    Hong Chau : I think Homecoming is a bit different from other TV series and that. These episodes are really all tied in together. We had all seven episodes before we started filming so we already knew where the characters were going to go I think that's different with our other episodic shows where the scripts are coming out week by week and the authors writing them as they go so they themselves don't know where the characters are going yet. So with that with a show like that I think it would be different you're planning as an actor are your character just within that one contained a circuit. With homecoming we had the same director for the entire season. We blocked shot kind of the same way that a film. So, it was a lot of jumping back and forth so as an actor you're keeping all of that information in your head while you're shooting the scenes so in that way it felt more like a feature film.

    Q : I want to talk about the relationship that you have both with your characters. Leonard Geist assume to be a kind of trying to maybe shrink from a better control it and Audrey was trying to grass more. Can you guys talk about your characters and their relationship with you know with Leonard in the season ?

    Chris Cooper : I don't think that Leonard ever considered the idea of being a CEO was the farthest thing from his mind. In his product simply took off. And I think we'll see. I can’s giveaway here but He's happy. He's happy in his own world. And. It's often not in the guts of Geist industry.

    Hong Chau : I think concerning Audrey Temple that she is a person who Is decent and good at her core. But she questions a lot of things and feels what like there are certain things that she's supposed to chase after she's supposed to chase after power and influence and she's supposed to want a higher-level job. She's supposed to want respect she's supposed to want all of these things and. Those sorts of values are ingrained in us through a culture that really celebrates ambition and material gain and material wealth and so this is just the society in the culture match we all live in and she's a little bit of a victim of that where she is a very smart capable person and can't think for herself but just the influences the pressures are really get to her. So she is chasing after something that she's not quite sure she personally really wants but feels that she's supposed to want and that creates a bit of a moral dilemma for her in the season and we'll see how that that works out but it's a very uncomfortable desire for her.

    Q : So my question to you guys, since you repeat about the core of the story, i want to ask you what do you believe are the motivations of the characters ? what part of their personality resonated with you ?

    Hong Chau : I think for me what resonated about my character even though I don't think that were similar I think. I understand her desire to be a good person but also not feel like a champ. So. It's very easy to, especially within the workplace, certain qualities are not celebrated if you are a flexible person or somebody who is willing to compromise or somebody who's willing to let somebody else speak before you or maybe get a hat or to take credit and. Those sorts of things are not really rewarded in the workplace and you have to develop some sort of you know killer instinct in order to really rise in the ranks at a corporation like Geist and that's not really an Audrey Temple DNA. I don't think it's a struggle for her. So, I could empathize with that am I being. It's a part of growing up professionally. But, It's a part of professional maturity. Learning how to deal with power dynamics within an organization.

    Q : What can you tell us about your work with Janelle Monáe on this Homecoming second season ?

    Chris Cooper : I can give you a quick wrap up with that as far as I'm concerned we have we have many stories. going on and on. I think Janelle and I are together within one shot but a whole different story going on between Janelle and myself.

    Hong Chau : I'm in I will just say in general Janelle is a star. She's smart, she's beautiful, she’s going to have a very long acting career end I think her fans will be Very pleased with seeing this more stripped-down ragged version of Janelle Monáe and that we've come to now.

    Q : So you recently played in A beautiful day in the neighborhood then you also play in The Little Women and other are coming. How would you describe the status of your career ?

    Chris Cooper : This phase of the career has not changed. I'm blessed to be able to choose the material that interested me. I'm still extremely active in the business. It was a last year in the previous year I was very busy. And I hope that continues. So, I'm just a coasting along looking for the next job.

    Q : This question is primarily for Hong. I watched a few episodes. Inside them Audrey's arc. She has a bit of a you know a woman of color in the workplace. She's like making some big armed teams come to life and one of them is being seen and heard by her fears in the office place. It seems like Leonard is the only one in management and who's you know a white guy who's actually sees her as a person who is worse. Why is it that you know do you think that Leonard has that ability to see her work and you know what she can do for the company and then the others could not. They actually use her terribly.

    Hong Chau : Well I think. I think Leonard can probably recognize a little bit of the “homegrowiness” of Audrey Temple's character. I think when you're at the top you don't really have to try and I think that there are other people at the company who are still trying to get to a higher place where as Leonard cases already are the highest you can go that's where the Buck stops insulting your guys and so he doesn't have anything to prove to anyone at a company and he can be in a position there look at everyone very soberly and she sees that this is a young woman who is really trying and wants to work hard and I think that somebody like Leonard guys really appreciate. I don't think he's looking for a smooth talker or somebody who's really flashy. There is nothing gimmicky about Audrey Temple and she's just very earnest in the way that she approaches him and I think that's what he's responding to god. There's another character that Audrey Temple really gravitates. That lady played by the great Joan Cusack. Her character's name is Francine. And similarly, there I think. Audrey Temple is just taken a back when somebody in a position of leadership are really show that they believe in her and I think that Francine is someone who Audrey can look up because she is a woman who is thriving in a historically male dominated the institution, the military. And that's I think she just thinks Francine is just so fascinating and wants to learn as much as she can for her as well.

    Synopsis :
    The critically-acclaimed series Homecoming returns for its second season with a fresh new mystery and an exciting new star, Janelle Monáe. Her character wakes in a rowboat adrift a lake with no memory of how she got there -- or even who she is.

    Homecoming Season 2
    Created by Eli Horowitz, Micah Bloomberg
    Based on Homecoming by Eli Horowitz, Micah Bloomberg
    Directed by Kyle Patrick Alvarez
    Producers : Eric Simonson, Marc Bienstock
    Starring Janelle Monáe, Chris Cooper, Stephan James, Hong Chau, Chelsea Wallace, Monica Zhang, Chip Chinery, Jake Sidney Cohen, Nicole Alicia Xavier, Johann Carchidi Abreu, Albert Bensabat, Ari Frenkel, Timothy E. Goodwin, Michelle Haro, Anna Jaller Jeni Jones, Mary Anne McGarry, Bilal Mir, Milo Stein and Audrey Wasilewski
    Cinematography : Jas Shelton
    Editor : Matthew Ramsey
    Production companies : Esmail Corp, Gimlet Pictures, Crocodile, We Here At, Red Om Films, Anonymous Content, Universal Cable Productions, Amazon Studios

    We would like to thank :
    Amandine Rouhaut (Serieously) (France), Jonita Davis (USA), Lorenzo Ormando (Angleterre) and Ravi Bansal (PIT) (Inde) who were present with us during this great press roundtable
    Our San Diego editor and photographer Felipe Acevedo for his reread and help
    Hugo De Luca and Amazon Prime Video for this great press roundtable

    Photos : Copyright Amazon Prime Video