Brian Cox wants you to know he's in much better shape than Logan Roy
Warning: This article contains spoilers for the most recent episode of Succession.
The frail health of Waystar Royco chief Logan Roy has been a running plot point through the hit HBO show Succession. In the pilot episode, Brian Cox's character suffered a stroke which, for a while, had him at death's door and, on Sunday night's episode, Logan collapsed while on a lengthy hike in the Hamptons with his son Kendall (Jeremy Strong) and Waystar Royco investor Josh Aaronson (Adrien Brody). Or, as Kieran Culkin's Roman Roy said to Kendall in a subsequent phone call, "We're hearing you took an old man out to die in the sun...You tried to assassinate our dad with the sun."
Cox himself is keen for people to know that he is in much better physical shape than the media mogul he plays.
"I don't get worn out in that way," says the Scottish actor who, it's worth pointing out, appeared on Broadway in the play The Great Society just a couple of years ago. "It's what is known as the art of acting!"
Below, Cox talks more about Sunday's Succession and working with Strong and Brody.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How much actual walking did shooting the episode involve?
BRIAN COX: A fair amount but, of course, this is what slightly annoys me. It's the writers, and I love them, but they made him that he couldn't cope with that walk. I walk all the time! I don't have any problem walking. I had to pretend that I was worn out and it was too much and his health and all that. But actually, the truth of the matter is, I would have no difficulty whatsoever. You know, my arthritic insteps might play up a bit but, no, apart from that, not too bad.
I didn't mean to annoy you with the question. I've seen Manhunter. The last thing I want to do is piss off the original Hannibal Lecter!
[Laughs] No, I'm not pissed off. It's just fact! That was it. It's just that fact that, whenever there's a problem, I love the way the writers will [say], we need to negotiate this problem, so we'll make him sick! [Laughs] He'll have some kind of ailment. But it's fine. It's legitimate and it works in the context. But then I'm a lot younger than Logan, so that's probably why.
Logan and Kendall have this icy, rancorous series of confrontations during the episode. What can you tell us about shooting that?
Well, you know, Jeremy has what he calls his process, which I respect. He completely inhabits the world. At night-time he's fine, he drops it all and it's gone, but when he's working he's completely obsessed with what he's doing. And it works! There's no question it works for him. Actually, we were surprisingly more social than we'd been on previous episodes or even subsequent episodes. We were all filming down on Long Island, we were filming in Montauk, so it was quite good. We had a good time.
What was it like working with Adrien Brody?
Great. Adrien was superb. He's a wonderful actor and he just dives straight in. Because it's always hard to come into our show, [but] the material was there and he really delivered. I'm hoping that maybe we'll find a way to get him back.
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