'Westworld' star Jonathan Tucker on how his character shakes up the quest for glory (Exclusive)
Both Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) and the Man in Black (Ed Harris) have their sights set on reaching the unknown destination, with Dolores taking what she needed from Major Craddock (Jonathan Tucker) and the Confederados in last week's episode. After appealing to Teddy's (James Marsden) senses and getting cut free, Craddock's journey isn't over -- at least according to Tucker.
"Major Craddock is still after an unknown place called Glory," he promised. "And he is determined, he is hellbent on making his way there, despite any obstacles that might or might not get thrown his way."
The 35-year-old actor found himself thrown into the action of Westworld this season, after meeting showrunners Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy at a panel in Austin, Texas, years ago, where they premiered a trailer for the HBO drama. "I was a fan of the show," Tucker revealed. Joy, who had worked with Bryan Fuller on another project, ended up seeing Tucker on Fuller's American Gods, and pitched him a role in season two. "We started having a conversation about that, and it was a real privilege to come on board for the second season."
Major Craddock made his first appearance in an action-packed scene with Wood's Dolores, in which he was killed and revived in a matter of seconds. It was a big adjustment for the character, as hosts are just starting to learn what they are on Westworld -- and a bigger adjustment for Tucker.
"You jump onto that train at a full run and you do as much damage as you possibly can in the shortest amount of time," he explained of his approach to Westworld -- which he confessed required a bit of explaining from Joy and Nolan. "But one of the things I found most exciting about this character was getting to play him as all the elements of a human being, a fully realized person, but also what I could incorporate about being a host in this world... discovering new information."
"In Westworld, [acting] becomes a slightly different process," he continued. "But you start to carve out your own little interior stories, and then you come to set as you would on any project, and you have to take in the world or the environment."
Tucker also got to play off of Wood, who he had met in acting classes when they were kids 25 years ago. "It's a privilege to become a colleague of contemporary," he said, praising Wood's evolution as an actor. "She has worked very hard for an extended period of time, and shes' made he right choices as an actress. And I mean that not as the projects she's chosen, but the sweat equity that she's put in, and that's been just a privilege to watch."
One thing he's not sure of is how much Craddock's comments to Teddy actually impacted his relationship with Dolores. "I wasn't as aware of what a wedge I was driving until I watched the episode myself," he shared. "But Major Craddock, if he's not willing to acquiesce that the Southern Confederate Army lost the war, I'm hard pressed to think he's willing to give up his place as a divider in other aspects of the war and his life."
"One of the joys of getting redacted, CIA dossier scripts is that I get to watch the show with much of the same experience, as a typical audience member," Tucker said with a laugh. "I have little knowledge of where it's going, but it sure is fun."
Westworld airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HBO.