Matt Damon on Portraying Liberace’s Lover in ‘Behind the Candelabra’

matt-damon-behind-the-candelabraWhen director Steven Soderbergh begin working on the long-in-development biopic about flamboyant entertainer Liberace, he didn’t have to look far for an actor who would play Liberace’s lover Scott Thorson.  Soderbergh turned to frequent collaborator Matt Damon to star as Thorson in Behind the Candelabra, based on the titular book by Thorson, opposite Michael Douglas as the world-famous entertainer.  During a press event at the Television Critics Association Winter Tour with Douglas and Damon, Damon talked about getting into such a campy character without portraying him disrespectfully.

One of the things that surprised Damon was how he got into the costuming — something that isn’t typical for him — which helped him get into Thorson’s mindset.  He explains, “I’ve always been somebody who goes into the wardrobe fitting and I just try to get out. I try to get out as fast as I can. When they ask me what kind of shoes — at this point — I look for the most comfortable shoes, I look for the most comfortable clothes. I just kind of can’t be bothered with it, but this was a very specific thing and I probably spent more time in the wardrobe fittings on this thing than I had, had on the previous 15 projects. Literally days and days and days.  And I really enjoyed it… And also, reading the book that the character that I play wrote — he really was taken with the glamour of this lifestyle. That was one thing that he really — even when writing the book — he talked about how impressed he was and how excited he was to be involved in that kind of thing.”

Once he got into character, Damon enjoyed exploring the absurdities of the life Liberace and Thorson shared.  He says, “There are aspects of their relationship that were absurd, but for me it just kind of pointed out that there are aspects of all of our lives that are absurd, they’re just not absurd to us because they’re our lives. And we [had] fun making it, but… when you’ve made a lot of movies it’s really rare to even see a script this good. It was so complex.”

Nevertheless, despite the absurdities Damon didn’t want to simply poke fun at the eccentric relationship the two men shared.  He explains, “What it felt like was if this was a relationship between a man and a woman, you’d feel moments like, ‘This is too intimate, maybe I shouldn’t be here.’ But it’s between a man and a man and I’ve never seen that movie before.  So it was fun, but we weren’t giggling about it. We took it very seriously. These are people’s lives and we wanted to get it right… because we know how rare something like this is.”

via Yahoo! News

Leave a Reply

Latest Videos

Watch: Benedict Cumberbatch Film the Smaug Motion Capture for ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’
Though Peter Jackson‘s movie adaptations of The Hobbit haven’t received the same critical acclaim as his films based on the book’s sequel, The Lord of the Rings (turning a 300 page book into 9+ hours of film tends to do that), fans are still eagerly anticipating the release of the final part of The Hobbit […]
Watch: Daniel Radcliffe on the Differences Between American and British Theater Audiences
Though moviegoers can see Daniel Radcliffe in the fantasy film Horns, which opens today, Broadway fans will have to wait a bit longer. Radcliffe is an unapologetic fan of Broadway — he has starred in Equus, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, and The Cripple of Inishmaan — but he hasn’t yet made […]
Watch: Anna Gunn, Jacki Weaver and Virginia Kull on ‘Gracepoint’ and Strong Female Roles on TV
The actresses also speak candidly about how they feel about their characters in the series and why its important for TV to feature series with strong female leads.Check out the conversation above!
Watch: Cristin Milioti Talks ‘A to Z’, ‘Once’ and ‘How I Met Your Mother’
Few actresses have the kind of rise as Cristin Milioti has had in the last few years. A virtual unknown in 2011, she became a bona fide Broadway star in the 2012 hit Once, appeared in a supporting role in the 2013 film The Wolf of Wall Street, and was featured as the titular mother […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/watch-bryan-cranstons-acting-adv.jpg
Watch: Bryan Cranston’s Acting Advice
With Breaking Bad: The Complete Series Barrel being released on Blu-ray with all kinds of goodies today, it gives us yet another opportunity to reflect on the series’ star Bryan Cranston and all of the incredible advice he has offered actors in the wake of his success. In a video he filmed in 2013 for […]