VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: Jared Harris Enjoyed Playing ‘Despicable Person’ In ‘The Beast Must Die’
The Beast Must Die star Jared Harris revealed the challenges of playing a “despicable person” in his new uInterview.
“I play George Rattery, I guess he’s potentially the titular beast of the title,” Harris told uInterview Founder Erik Meers. “He is the patriarch of a family that Cush [Jumbo]’s character [Frances Cairns] manages to unveil her way into, who she suspects somebody in this household is responsible for killing her son.”
“[The suspect’s] a hit and run driver, so he hit the boy and left him on the side of the road,” the actor explained. “The story starts out with her she’s frustrated that the police haven’t been able to find who did it and who’s responsible and essentially the police have exhausted all their lines of inquiry and they basically said without saying they’re giving up that they’re giving up. And she decides to take the matter into her own hands and she’s going to exact her own justice, her own form of justice, and she’s gonna find out who did it and then she’s gonna kill them.”
Harris described the process of playing a villain like George while trying to “keep alive the intrigue with the audience, the mystery with the audience.”
“You want to keep the audience guessing,” Harris said. “You know, once an audience has decided that they pretty much may’ve figured out who you are then particularly if you’re playing you know quote unquote villains the interest in those characters tends to wain and you get written off.”
He complimented the series writer Gaby Chiappe for her ability to keep the audience guessing.
“He’s a despicable person and you want to hate him,” he said, “and of course you think that she’s probably found the right person after doing some digging but then you’re not quite sure.”
Harris also described some of the challenges he faced on set including script rewrites, pretending to drive a car and COVID restrictions.
“Weirdly, like the scenes in the car — I was driving with Frances, Cush, in the car — those scenes can be tough just because you know it’s not really happening. You’re in a car, you’re driving, you’re being pulled on a low loader, you’ve got an entire crew four feet from your face shivering in the cold, you know, as your trying to pretend that you’re actually driving a car.”