We need Kevin to talk about
A Hollywood star makes a long-awaited foray into television, with plenty of advice from his wife, Kyra Sedgwick, writes Michele Manelis
an option. But about four years ago I thought, ‘ What are you doing? You love television, you watch television all the time, your wife (Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer) is on a television show, you direct television, and when you get together with your friends, that’s all you talk about’. And after watching a guy’s head get cut off on Game of Thrones, I threw my hat in the ring.’’
Bacon has enjoyed a diverse career. ‘‘ I’ve done a lot of dark material, like in The Woodsman, and I also do movies that are light, but I’m often drawn to things that have emotional consequences and life and death situations,’’ he says.
‘‘ That’s what I liked about The Following.’’
Given the gruesome content, it wouldn’t be surprising if his day job caused him nightmares.
‘‘ Well, yes, I did have a nightmare the other night, but it was more about doing this press interview than it was about The Following,’’ he says with a smile.
‘‘ Actually, this kind of material is therapeutic for me.
‘‘ To be able to confront fear, darkness, sadness and pain that you have in your heart and expose it and then let it go is what therapy is. I think acting provides that.’’
The Following originated in the dark recesses of Williamson’s mind.
‘‘ I’ve had the idea about serial killers for years, in fact, since 1994,’’ Williamson says.
‘‘ I tried to write The Following as a feature film, but I could never figure out how to end it, and I realised then that it was meant to be a TV show.
‘‘ I knew I wanted someone like Kevin Bacon for the role of Hardy, and couldn’t believe it when we actually got Kevin Bacon.’’
The cast includes James Purefoy as Carroll, Natalie Zea ( Californication), Annie Parisse ( Person of Interest), and Shawn Ashmore ( X-Men movies).
The timing in the BaconSedgwick household couldn’t have been more serendipitous.
The Closer finished shooting last year and pre-production for The Following started almost immediately.
‘‘ It wasn’t so much the passing of the baton,’’ Bacon explains. ‘‘ It just so happened that her show ended and mine started. She gave me some good advice though, like, ‘ Think long and hard, because if the show works, you are
And that’s the other thing; I don’t have the moves any more
going to be playing this guy for a long time’. In some ways, the idea of playing one character was frightening to me.’’
Bacon has been married to Sedgwick since 1988, and they have raised their children, Travis, 23, and Sosie, 21, on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
Clearly, the Bacon-Sedgwick union represents a gold standard in scandal-free Hollywood marriages.
‘‘ Kyra and I have a real solid thing and for the most part we are home bodies, but there’s also a side of us that are vagabonds, my wife and I,’’ he says. ‘‘ We’re like carnies; we have had the suitcase packed our entire lives together and go from job to job to job, to this town to that town.
‘‘ When I am not doing that, I am going out with my rock band.’’
The Bacon Brothers, comprised of Kevin and his brother Michael, have released six albums.
Timing has played into Bacon and Sedgwick’s relationship from the beginning.
‘‘ Kyra and I met doing a play called Lemon Sky off Broadway. The roles were meant for Jeff Daniels and Cynthia Nixon but neither of them was available. So we often joke that we owe our marriage to both those actors who passed up the roles,’’ he says with a laugh. ‘‘ So, we did the play and six months later we were married.’’
Bacon has been nominated for various awards for such movies as Murder in the First, Mystic River, and Frost/Nixon. However, the success of his 1984 breakout role in the music-themed drama, Footloose, still haunts him.
He laughs and says: ‘‘ This is the problem I have with it; it’s rare that Kyra and I get out to dance, although we love to, but if Footloose gets played, it then becomes a performance. The other thing is when I’m at a wedding it’s the bride and groom who should be the stars that night, but if the DJ flips that song, it’s embarrassing and I’m afraid everyone will look at me instead of the bride and groom.’’
That’s impressive. Nearly 30 years later, he can still do the Footloose dance?
‘‘ And that’s the other thing; I don’t have the moves any more,’’ he adds with a smirk. The Following, Channel 9, tonight, 8.40pm