Pedro Pascal: 'There’s preciousness around saying I’m in The Mandalorian season 4'
Radio Times Magazine meets man-of-the-moment, Pedro Pascal.
This interview originally appeared in Radio Times Magazine.
After years as a jobbing actor, Chilean-American Pedro Pascal hit the big time in 2014, bagging the major role of Oberyn Martell in Game of Thrones. Big parts in Netflix dramas and superhero films followed, leading to an acclaimed turn in Sky Atlantic’s recent apocalyptic drama The Last of Us.
Not one to rest on his laurels, the 47-year-old is back in another hit show. In the third series of the Disney+ Star Wars adventure The Mandalorian, he plays a gruff intergalactic gunslinger who rarely removes his trademark helmet. And off set, it seems that Pascal may be carrying a little extra armour of his own.
You were the lead in The Last of Us — now you’re back as the lead in The Mandalorian, which is another huge show. Are you getting more attention?
There are, I suppose, waves you can experience when something is airing. I can remember what it felt like when series four of Game of Thrones was on television, starting to see people doing double takes with you on the street.
With that said, kids who watch The Mandalorian are always having trouble understanding what their parents are on about when they’re introducing me to them, because they’re not used to seeing my face! So I guess it varies.
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Do you ever regret signing up for a show where your face is hidden?
I don’t. I knew what I was signing up for, though wearing the mask has its challenges. You’d be fascinated to find out what happens if you can’t see just below your eyes. And in the armour… my shoulders are pretty wide, and then they get much wider. So my depth perception completely changes, and there is no peripheral vision.
I’m like a human pinball machine. But you’re very protected. You have armour from the tip of your toes to the top of your head. A very, very thick, strong plastic.
Next question — and be honest now…
I will not be honest. I’ve got to know you first, and I don’t know you well enough!
Well, I’ll still ask — how often is it actually you in the costume, as opposed to someone standing in and you doing the voiceover?
It varies so much. I hesitate to be totally specific, because I don’t want there to be any spoilers. I was in it the majority of the time for season 2 But when my doubles Brendan Wayne or Lateef Crowder or whoever else steps into it, depending on how many units are shooting at the same time or what the stunt is, it’s all based on the same physical language I interpreted. It’s kind of a collective effort.
This is the third series of The Mandalorian and we’ve just heard there’s a fourth. Will you be suiting up again?
It’s a mystery. There’s such preciousness around even saying that I’m signed up for season 4 if it’s already written. I’m naturally a blabbermouth, but I really get protective of it, because I get a thrill out of the surprises that are in store for the audience. And I don’t want the likes of you to ruin it for everybody by answering your questions. This is all going to go into print, so this banter… it’s not really going to translate very well.
You think it’ll seem like I’m being insulted?
I think you’ll probably come off OK. Another question — in The Mandalorian and The Last of Us, you play these reluctant father figures. Is that something you’re drawn to?
You sort of step through the doors that open. I think this kind of reluctant-father dynamic was familiar to us all along from films and TV before The Mandalorian came around.
It’s probably a coincidence.
Although maybe there is something about me… It doesn’t go into my conscious decision-making as far as work is concerned. But maybe as far as what I can contribute to the character, it comes from a protective part of me. I can be very protective of my friends and family. But I ain’t got no kids!
You’ve talked a lot about your Chilean heritage, and your 34 cousins back home — are they proud of you?
Well, they can’t all be. Some of them say, “You looked nervous.” Some of them are like, “But you haven’t been nominated for anything – that I know of, anyway.” The Chileans are like the English. Reserved and hard on each other. God, I’m going to get cancelled by Chile. And England!
You’re in demand at the moment. What’s next? Some time off?
I don’t have a job! I’ve got some cool things coming out, but they’re already in the can. At the moment, it’s a clean slate. Any ideas? Do I look like I need time off?
I don’t know. As you said, we don’t know each other that well. Anything else to add?
Yes – put in print that I kicked you out. Thanks!
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