Noah Emmerich goes beyond the badge in ‘The Americans’ (Exclusive Interview)

Noah Emmerich goes beyond the badge in ‘The Americans’ (Interview)
By Michael Aaron Gallagher of StayFamous.Net

Noah Emmerich. Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/FX
Noah Emmerich. Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/FX
In a shadowy world of international espionage, FBI counterintelligence agent Stan Beeman is treading a fine line between love and loyalty. The man behind the fictional character in the critically acclaimed drama The Americans is Noah Emmerich, an accomplished actor and graduate of Yale University, whose previous roles include the J.J. Abrams film Super 8, The Truman Show and The Walking Dead.

In a recent interview with StayFamous.Net, Noah talked about his new role on the popular FX series.

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “I was watching Super 8 and The Americans the other night and you do an awesome job in the law enforcement, military-type roles. Were you ever interested in being an agent or a spy when you were a kid?”

Noah Emmerich: “Thank you, first of all. I think there was maybe some brief moment where I thought being in the FBI would be cool. I was probably very young; it wasn’t a long or protracted fantasy. But I can’t say it was a real significant part of my adolescent fantasy.”

“And somehow I’ve ended up playing quite a few of these military/law enforcement [roles], I think partially driven by the material that we’re creating them in our culture. For actors there’s a lot of cop shows, a lot of military stuff… We’re interested in that world. It’s dramatic and exciting and makes for good pictures. But I never imagined I would do it so often… When I first read this pilot, I discounted it immediately just because I didn’t want to carry a gun anymore. Although… this show isn’t really about guns in the end, but it does create a great dramatic context in which to tell human stories.”

“But no, it wasn’t really a very strong part of my fantasy as a child to be an agent or a spy. Maybe more so a western; I think I had a gun belt when I was nine or ten, one of those western six shooters. That was my bigger fantasy with a gun was to be Billy Jack, and that’s about the extent of it.”

Noah Emmerich (left) as FBI Agent Stan Beeman, Richard Thomas as FBI Agent Gadd. Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/FX.
Noah Emmerich (left) as FBI Agent Stan Beeman, Richard Thomas as FBI Agent Gadd. Photo by Craig Blankenhorn/FX.

Michael Aaron Gallagher: “I was also looking at some of the lists that people make on IMDb, and they had included you in the list of the greatest supporting actors of all time, as well as a list of often overlooked actors. What has it meant to you to be in such a prominent supporting role not only in this show, but in so many other great projects over the years?”

Noah Emmerich: “Oh I’m very flattered to hear that. That’s very nice. I don’t know who makes those lists, but if you can get me their number, I’ll send them some flowers.”

“I’ve been very fortunate. I’m very grateful for a lot of the roles and the people I’ve had the chance to work with. There are a lot of really talented, incredible, people working in this business, and I’ve been blessed to work with a good number of them, and each time I learn more and I have a wonderful time, and I’m glad people are appreciating it.”

“One thing that’s wonderful about this job, it’s unprecedented for me, is the time frame. There’s much more time. You get to do so much more material. There’s so many scripts and so many episodes, and you have sort of a sustained relationship with an audience, which doesn’t happen in film, it’s a one shot deal. So it creates room, I think, for a more intimate relationship between the audience and the character. It’s wonderful. It feels great to be seen and appreciated. It’s really it’s been fantastic, and I’m very grateful.”

The Americans airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on FX. You can also follow Noah on Twitter @NoahEmmerich.

Noah Emmerich goes beyond the badge in ‘The Americans’ (Interview)
Copyright 2013 by Michael Aaron Gallagher
Photographs courtesy of FX Networks

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