Peter Krause is thoroughly enjoying playing Adam Braverman in the hit TV series Parenthood. Adam is the oldest of the Braverman kids, he’s the one his siblings turn to when they need advice, and for the most part, he’s also confident and in control in his role as a husband and dad. Not only is Krause relishing the civilised hours his new role affords, writes Holly Byrnes, but he’s also appreciating the way it’s challenged the way he parents in his own life.
Q. You have some pretty family-friendly hours on this production, by Hollywood standards. What is a typical day?
A. I’d say 10 to 12 hours. Five or six times we’ve gone over 12, when we’re on location. I don’t think we had a day on Six Feet Under that wasn’t under 12 hours. Dirty Sexy Money we had 18 to 20-hour days. This show is very liveable, I get to spend 2 ½ days with my son. Q. Has playing Adam, who is a conscientious dad, changed the way you parent? A. It has. I’m a more focused parent, a better parent. You can love your kids more, you can love your parents more, you can have that conversation. Q. That’s not to say Adam is a perfect parent. Do you like that he fails sometimes? A. There are moments when I read the script and go: ‘ Wow, we’re going to do that?’ Then I think about our own frailty, when we don’t deliver and I think it’s good to demonstrate that. This is a safe place to explore these issues. Q. Playing the father of a son with Asperger’s comes with a responsibility and has helped improve understanding of autism.
A. I’ve learnt a lot about it and feel a sense of responsibility to a point. I’ve gotten more response from this show from family and friends than I have from any other I’ve done. Q. A lot of the more difficult moments are faced with humour, but striking that balance of tragedy and comedy can’t be easy? A. That’s the kind of program I like to watch. Make me laugh, make me feel. If you can sensitise your audiences to the emotional riches of family life you’re doing something good. Q. Do you enjoy doing comedy? A. When I first read the script for Parenthood I told them I was happy to get my Dick Van Dyke on. So they wrote some stuff because of that comment, like dancing like an idiot. Q. How did you overcome the confusion between the film and the TV series? A. We were a couple of episodes in when I felt we had enough of the feeling of that film that there was a bridge there and then we got it off our back.
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