THE BIG ASK
ERIC Bogosian, who plays Capt Danny Ross on Law & Order: Criminal Intent, was in Australia recently. It turns out he’s an honorary Aussie because his wife, director Jo Bonney, grew up here. Are you enjoying your trip to Australia? I’m married to an Australian, so I’ve been here several times. I love Australia. How did you come to play Capt Ross? I’d actually been on very early Law & Order episodes, as a lawyer a couple of times. So (creator) Dick Wolf knew me from when there was only one Law & Order. I met with Dick and he said: ‘‘If you want it you can have it.’’ Do you like playing him? It’s everything I wanted it to be. I made it clear I wanted to get into a Law & Order role a few years ago. Just the whole seriousness of the acting, the intensity of it is something that really appealed to me. That’s all been true, that’s what I get to do, but it’s all been very comfortable for me. The show shoots the next neighbourhood over from where I live and we have a wonderfully warm crew and cast and it’s pretty fantastic. Do you enjoy being able to shoot out on the streets of New York? The New York street stuff is always fun. It gets me to places I never go to. There are parts of Manhattan that I never go to and we’ll shoot there or we’ll shoot on Staten Island, where I never go. We’ve even shot out in the middle of the ocean on barges. I’m personally stuck in the squad room quite a bit because my character is at home base tracking everything as the detectives are out there doing stuff. I’m comfortable with that. Every year when we wait to see if we get picked up again we kind of wonder what would happen if this wasn’t here any more. It’s like a real place, almost. The Law & Order franchise has been going since 1990. To what do you attribute the appeal of the show? I think our secret ingredient is the acting. Because we shoot out of New York we have access to the incredible company of actors who are available in New York. The lead stuff is always good— you can get great lead actors, but everybody in our show, even people who don’t have lines, are top actors. Almost everyone in our show has some sort of theatre background. It gives the show a quality that’s a little more intense. Since being on the show do you find that when you’re walking through Central Park you’re on the lookout for a dead body? It’s funny, I’m playing a guy who works at the largest police department in the world and I live in that city and the police are around all the time. One of the things I do expect and never get is to be saluted by the cops I see on the street because I’m their captain. They don’t understand that. They don’t salute me but they’ll say: ‘‘Hey Captain, how’s it going?’’, stuff like that.