Willie Garson Interview for White Collar Season 4 – You’ll find Mozzie at the New York Public Library| July 11, 2012 at 11:29 PM EDT
With White Collar having started up on Tuesday evening, it was so nice to get a chance to speak with Willie Garson (Mozzie) the day before.
Perhaps I’ve mentioned before that I’m a Twitter fanatic (love me, love my twitter handle: @ceilck) and I regularly tweet at my favorite White Collar writers (@WCWriters) and actors with random thoughts and adulation. So it was a real treat to be able to speak actual words into a phone, and hear Mr. Willie Garson respond with answers comprised of more than 140 characters. I did my best to ask about Willie’s character, and how he felt about it, though I would have loved to ask about his web series Whole Day Down (@WholeDayDown) and his impressions (or perhaps imitations?) of Matt Bomer‘s new movie “Magic Mike.”
But this wasn’t Twitter, and I only was supposed to ask two questions (I brazenly asked three. It was Willie Garson. The temptation was too great.) So here’s my quick chat with Willie:
Ceil Kessler: So when he’s not hatching schemes with Neal or drinking Neal’s wine what do you think Mozzie does with all his time?
Willie Garson: I think he probably hustles old ladies at chess games like in Washington Square Park. I think he explores a lot of art and I think just because we never see him getting all the information that he has my guess is that Mozzie spends a lot of time in the New York Public Library in the reading room. So he – I mean he has an awful lot of information and he has to get it from somewhere.
CK: He does know a lot.
CK: If you could write a detail in for Mozzie’s character or an event in for Season 4 what would you want Mozzie to do or what would you want to have happen to him in Season 4?
WG: You know, because we spend so much of Season 3 with Mozzie like kind of unhappy and dying to get out of here I think I’d like to see Season 4, I’d like to see Mozzie happy with his circumstances and where he is. I don’t know if that’s going to happen by the end of Season 4 but that’s what I would like to happen for him.
CK: Okay. Do you like the twists that his character has taken? I mean he’s been shot, he took out a contract on a guy, he gave his best friend an ultimatum last season. Do you like the twists he’s taken or…
WG: Well I always like it when it’s interesting. You know? I never can guess what’s going to happen. And we don’t get our scripts until like, you know, two days before we start shooting each episode so we never know. And that’s what I like. I like that I don’t know. A lot of actors like to know so far in advance but, you know, I’m – maybe I’m not that good of an actor or it’s just my style of acting. In life we don’t know what’s coming so I’d like to not know what’s coming. It keeps it interesting for me.
We also learned that he’d love a crossover with Sons of Anarchy, the actor he’d most like to work with (again) is Jimmy Smits, and that a recent prank he pulled on Matt Bomer, relating to Magic Mike, left him a little overexposed. He wouldn’t consent to an internet posting of the prank, citing that much of the video was not suitable for children OR adults.
Here are some memorable quotes from the rest of the conference call:
About the characters in White Collar “…I think it was about episode five where we all called each other up after it aired and we were like you know what? These characters are so well drawn and so perfectly complementary to each other, we could be solving the case of the missing Scotch tape on the North Pole and we’d be fine.”
How he’d like Mozzie to end up: “I’d like Mozzie to end up happy, you know, whatever that means we have to figure out and I think we will in the coming seasons figure out what actually Mozzie wants. We’re actually joking a lot this episode about Mozzie’s fake baby that he has that maybe Mozzie wants to have a baby and maybe Mozzie wants to fall in love ”
The friendship between Neal and Mozzie: “I do believe that the relationship can withstand anything even though, you know, because it is a TV show we have to tease every once in a while that, you know, this is it, I’m never talking to you again. But I think we’ve established now after three seasons that there’s going to be a way for these two guys to always keep an eye on each other and take care of each other.”
Working with the White Collar cast: “…We all are very good friends and we try and keep each other entertained and plugged in and help each other out in the scenes. We really do all have each other’s backs.”
Mozzie’s political platform if he ran for President: “Mozzie’s platform would be to dismantle the entire government. That would be Mozzie’s platform and that would be chaos.”
The possibility of a guest appearance by good friend Elvis Costello: “I am not allowed to answer that specific question about that specific person.” Hmm.
What his son, Nathen, thinks of White Collar: “Oh my God. He loves it…kids are not stupid and they want a story and they want to feel smart…parents can watch it with their kids and not feel like they’re watching something mind numbing. And kids can watch it with their parents and feel like they’re watching something intelligent and grown up.”
Working in Puerto Rico: “…We were working, you know, like 6:00 am every day to get the sunlight. And then they don’t eat dinner…until 9:00 or 10:00 at night. So that was really hard. So we were basically in a coma…of tiredness. But, you know, it was fantastic. The local crew was amazing that came and that worked with our crew.
Directing: “…If we’re fortunate enough to get picked up I will be directing next year.”
Whether the actors talk about what they read on Twitter: “All the time. All the time. I mean it’s one of the reasons that Matt is not on Twitter, because he thinks it’s the beginning of hell in a handbasket. That ‘everything about everything’ is on people’s Twitters…And so, you know, I’ll tell him some of the things I see on Twitter just to annoy him.”
If he wrote his own undercover story, where would he and Neal go, and what would their aliases be: “I’d be mistaken if I said we wouldn’t go undercover at a male strip club and Matt would be Hot Cider and I would be Dry Aged Beef.”
Ceil Kessler reviews White Collar for Small Screen Scoop, and writes fiction and humor for MagnificentNose.com. Follow her on Twitter! The more, the merrier!
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