John Kiesewetter reports:
Twenty years after “Cheers” ended, Woody Harrelson returns to a TV series in HBO’s “True Detective” crime drama (9 p.m. Sunday).
Here are some comments from my interview for my Sunday A&E story with Harrelson, a 1979 Lebanon High School graduate I’ve known since shortly after his debut as Woody Boyd on “Cheers” in 1985.
Woody and Matthew McConaughey play Louisiana detectives investigating a cult murder of a prostitute in 1995. The story is told in flashbacks from 2012, when new officers investigating a similar murder quiz former partners Martin Hart (Harrelson) and Rust Cohle (McConaughey).
His reaction when I told him with his paunchy makeup as Hart in 2012, he could pass as detective for the Lebanon police or Warren County Sheriff’s office: “I hope the Warren County Sheriff’s office reads this and thinks about deputizing me!”
He agreed with me that viewers (including me) might not recognize McConaughey’s present-day Rust Cohle character, with his shoulder-length hair. (HBO didn’t provide photos of the long-haired Cohle):
“I remember when I first saw him – Oh my God! I really didn’t recognize him when I first saw him. He was outside of his trailer… He was just walking along, and it took me a minute to recognize him. I really liked that look.”
Was switching from 1995 to 2012 difficult? Did they shoot all the 1995 scenes together, then the 2012 scenes?
“No, we bounced back and forth between the looks. Even in one day, we’d go from ’95 to 2012, you know.They could never book it that way (chronologically). It would be too expensive.”
So how did you keep it straight in your head?
“Matthew had it really psyched out. In his Airstream… there on one wall, he had the whole chronology start to finish. And it took up a goodly amount of space, but it was really helpful. If I had any questions, I’d just go in there and take a look. You really had to keep abreast to where you were in the story. It was one long sheet of paper, as long as a couch, across the back of his Airstream. That was up the whole time.”
Did you have a nice trailer too?
“I have a bus. It looks like what you’d expect of a hippie who lost his way from Maui. Or I guess I should say from Lebanon. But I wasn’t a hippe then.”
You’re now shooting “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” and “Part 2” till June in Atlanta with Josh Hutcherson from Northern Kentucky?
“He’s a great guy, Josh. I love Josh. Its really so fun hanging with him.”
When my Sunday story is posted, I’ll add the link here.