From: Andy

Just thought you might be interested in an interview with Andy Serkis which has appeared in todays “Metro”, a free newspaper distributed in Manchester, UK. Not sure if this info is already available, but I’ve not seen it before.

Its in a slot called the “60 second interview” and amongst other things, Serkis describes his role as Gollum:

Q. How did you get in touch with your inner hobbit? (the newspapers question I hasten to add!)

Serkis: The director, PJ, wanted him to be driven by an actor as opposed to just being an animated character. Although the majority of it was CG, the camera picked up all my movement using motion capture. I play him as if he’s a junkie and his fix is the ring – he goes cold turkey when he’s not near it. He’s a compulsive liar, he talks to himself – he’s psychologically damaged by the desire to possess the ring – and I’ve tried to make him as human as possible in that way.

Q. How does it feel, looking nothing like yourself?

Serkis: As Gollum depletes into this emaciated creature, he goes from looking like me through a prosthetic transformation into the CG image, which is unrecognisable. It was quite a liberating experience. He’s a split personality, Smeagol and Gollum, and I have two voices for the two different characters, with internal dialogues between them.

Q. Do you have to be partly schizophrenic to be an actor?

Serkis: Well, I know I am, there’s absolutely no doubt about it. It’s a prerequisite of the job. But also being in touch with parts of the psyche – our dark side – and not being afraid to go there.

The rest of the interview is then about his past characters ( such as Bill Sikes in Oliver Twist) and his favourite sinister character (Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs). Then theres just a couple of other quotes of note:

Q. What has been the “lost ring” in your life?

Serkis: I suppose it’s my family – my children. I’m completely addicted to them. They’re my addiction.

And then just finally at the end, he’s asked how he prepares for different parts and his comment about Gollum is:

Serkis: I went through five Red Bulls (energy/stimulant drink, for those unfamiliar) a day for Gollum.