Endgame

Geelong Advertiser - TV Guide - - COVER STORY - SHAWN DOYLE

Pay- TV se­ries Endgame presents a unique vari­a­tion on crime drama, with Its hero, charis­matic Rus­sian chess cham­pion Arkady Bala­gan, left ago­ra­pho­bic af­ter wit­ness­ing the mur­der of his fi­ancée. Three months have passed, and Arkady has been un­able to set foot out­side the build­ing. With bills mount­ing, he hits upon a unique so­lu­tion. Us­ing the pow­ers of ob­ser­va­tion and insight into hu­man na­ture he’s honed over years at the chess­board, he’s able to solve all man­ner of mys­ter­ies – “some dra­matic, some light, some mis­chievous”, ac­cord­ing to Shawn Doyle, who plays the cocky Arkady. lim­it­ing. The spec­trum of who Arkady is and who he be­comes over the course of the show was too varied for my mea­gre in­ter­pre­ta­tion of a Rus­sian di­alect, so I looked to Kas­parov – he’s a very witty man who has trav­elled the world from a young age, so his un­der­stand­ing and per­spec­tive is very cos­mopoli­tan and global. Shawn, what made you want to be a part of Endgame? At first I didn’t want to be a part of it. I won­dered if I re­ally wanted to be stuck in a ho­tel for six months. But I worked with the producers and di­rec­tors, fig­ur­ing out what could be fun about play­ing this char­ac­ter, and I re­alised the only way this char­ac­ter comes to life – be­cause he’s so des­per­ately try­ing to run away from his own pain, hav­ing wit­nessed his fi­ancée’s death – is by seek­ing dis­trac­tion and en­ter­tain­ment any­where he can find it. That means toy­ing with peo­ple and go­ing places in his mind. Did you draw on any par­tic­u­lar per­son or per­son­al­ity type to help bring Arkady to life? I would say the only spe­cific ref­er­ence that be­came im­por­tant to me was [ real- life Rus­sian chess cham­pion] Garry Kas­parov. A lot of that had to do with the di­alect be­cause I started off do­ing a North Amer­i­can ac­tor’s ver­sion of a Rus­sian di­alect, which was quite

The cast of Endgame , with Shawn Doyle, cen­tre. Does putting that kind of big per­son­al­ity into a con­fined space cre­ate some in­ter­est­ing ten­sion for the show? That ten­sion and how it man­i­fests it­self is re­ally fas­ci­nat­ing to play. It al­lows me, play­ing that char­ac­ter, to be very anti- so­cial, to be very un­ortho­dox in my re­sponses, re­ac­tions, choices and move­ments, and that’s so lib­er­at­ing as an ac­tor. You can just go for it, and what­ever you choose, that’s who he is. Phys­i­cally as well, I made the de­ci­sion to be con­stantly mov­ing, so much so the cam­era op­er­a­tors would con­stantly ask me to slow down.

Endgame, FX ( through Foxtel), Mon­day, 7.30pm

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