“Game of Thrones” Season 3 cast member Mackenzie Crook is heading to Fox this fall, playing a future-dwelling technician who helps out Karl Urban’s John Kennex on cases in “Almost Human,” a new series from J.J. Abrams and J.H. Wyman.
Although he played the rather serious Orell, a wildling who loved Rose Leslie’s Ygritte, and was distrustful of Kit Harington’s Jon Snow in “Thrones” (and rightly so), Mackenzie is well known for his comedy roles, including playing Gareth in the original British version of “The Office,” and Ragetti in “Pirates of the Caribbean.” And on Thursday, after his panel for “Almost Human” at the Fox portion of the Television Critics Association Summer Tour in Beverly Hills, Mackenzie said he is likely to bring some humor to his new role as Rudy in the drama.
“Yes, there is humor to be had there, mainly through his social awkwardness,” Mackenzie told Access Hollywood. “I think there’s quite a bit of scope for humor and I don’t know how much scope there is for the rest of the show in this — it’s quite a serious role that they’ve created. … I’m not saying it’s gonna be relentlessly grim, but if they need some comic relief, they’ll come to Rudy.”
Taking on two big budget American series’ in a row (“Game of Thrones” and now, “Almost Human”) has proved to be a fresh experience for the veteran actor.
“It’s all kind of new to me,” he said of doing the two American shows in a row. “The TV industry in the UK is very small. … We make six episodes per season, six half hour episodes, so to come to ‘Game of Thrones,’ which I only had a small part in five episodes, but to see the scale of it, and again, with this, the scale of the monster – it’s quite daunting, but incredibly exciting.”
As “Game of Thrones” fans know, Mackenzie’s journey as Orell didn’t end in Season 3, but rather transformed. As his wildling character lost his life, he used his warg abilities to enter the body of a bird, and the actor would love to see that presence carry on in the series.
“It would be great,” he smiled. “Yeah, I’ve thought about that, and things like ‘Game of Thrones’ – there’s no rules. They could probably bring me back if they wanted to.”
Whether his character will continue causing Jon Snow trouble as a bird is up to producers of that HBO show, but looking back on his “Game of Thrones” experience, Mackenzie said it was a good one.
“That was an amazing show to do,” he said. “And that eagle – I had my own eagle. It was a really nice family. It’s been going for two seasons, so to come into that and be made to feel welcome was great.”
Mackenzie’s new show, “Almost Human,” with Karl Urban and Michael Ealy, will premiere November 4 on Fox.
-- Jolie Lash
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