Watchmen - Patrick Wilson Interview
That's just what he's grown up seeing people as
Patrick Wilson: "No. I don't because I feel like the Nite Owl is Dan. I think that's the most human element in this is that you have a character that he's not schizophrenic or bipolar. That's just what he's grown up seeing people as masked avengers and villains, for that matter. This was something that he aspired to be so in playing Nite Owl you have to sort of feel like that's the best, most confident side of Dan. So that was actually more the fun is how would Dan play it versus how would I play him and try and be cool or something."
Did you come up with more of your own backstory than is actually in the graphic novel?
Patrick Wilson: "Well, it's all in there, quite honestly. It's such an unbelievably detailed, complex, dense graphic novel that any questions I had were right in there. We tried to include as many as we could in the finished film version, but luckily we had great source material and we had a director that had the confidence to want to keep pushing towards that and try to get as much as we could in."
How difficult is it to act inside a costume like that?
Patrick Wilson: "Well, I think you have to just sort of imagine how it would have been for them. I know that's sort of an odd response but, you know, Dan ultimately is a very heroic character so I think there's a lot of pride… I mean, I didn't really fool with, you know, changing the voice to not know who he was. I think there's actually an innocence in having a guy dressed like that and still be able to be completely earnest and realistic and heroic. He views it as a job and he's doing something really good – good for the society. So when you sort of play with it like that, you don't sort of…it doesn't feel like you're hiding behind anything. I think that's sort of the whole thing about he and Rorschach is him saying, 'I'm not the one wearing the mask,' and Rorschach says to Dan, 'You're still hiding in plain sight.' In fact if anything, Dan's hiding behind whether it's the glasses or the sort of schlubby-ness that he's become."
How difficult was the sex scene for you?
Patrick Wilson: "You know, I've done a few of them. It's never really super comfortable but really truthfully it was…Malin and I get along great so that was a no-brainer…but it was so important for these characters. You're pulling for them to go for it the entire movie. You really need it. You don't usually really get that, not just on a graphic sense but on an emotional sense. You don't get that in this sort of movie. So, to be honest with you, it's actually one of the scenes I'm most proud of when I'm watching it in a weird way."