Andrew Scott may have played the villain in Sherlock and Spectre well, but it’s not something he particularly wants to continue doing.
The actor, whose upcoming film All of Us Strangers sees him star opposite Paul Mescal, portrayed the James Bond villain C in the 2015 Daniel Craig film, but it’s not a role he’d likely take on again.
“If I’m honest, it’s not a territory that I feel like I would want to go over again,” Scott told British GQ. “Now I know who I am a little bit more, I feel like the work that I’m just interested in doing is more in the grey areas. I suppose it’s just that I didn’t think… I just maybe wasn’t that good in it.”
All of Us Strangers is already garnering Oscar buzz for the Fleabag actor and writer-director Andrew Haigh. Loosely based on Taichi Yamada’s novel Strangers, the film follows Adam (Scott) as he begins an intense and intimate relationship with Paul Mescal’s Harry.
When Adam visits his late parents’ home in the English suburbs, he finds them alive and well, unchanged from the day they died when he was 12 years old. As the story plays out, the protagonist goes between reality and the supernatural, unable to stay in the past or present for very long.
In the same GQ profile, Haigh revealed that he and Scott kicked off shooting while “holding each other’s hands” because it was such a personal story for both of them, primarily Haigh who weaved his own life experiences into the script. The shots of Adam’s parents’ house were even filmed in Haigh’s childhood home.
In one All of Us Strangers scene, Adam comes out to his parents, and Scott told the publication that he reflected on his own experience coming out to his parents in real life while shooting.
“I had a very happy childhood,” he said. “But there’s an inevitable pain that you have to go through when you have to take a risk telling your family something about yourself. I really do think that that is a gift now, because to have to risk everything, and for your family and friends to say ‘we accept you no matter what,’ that’s a real feeling of love that you get confirmed at a very young age, that actually some people who aren’t queer don’t get. I mean, some queer people aren’t so lucky.”
Noting that making the film felt “gratifying and cathartic” because he brought “so much of my pain into it,” the Sherlock actor explained that it also helped him realize that his sexuality can be a blessing of sorts.
“There’s this expression ‘my burden has become my gift,’“ he added. “I remember when I was 22 reading that and thinking wouldn’t that be amazing? If something that you think is a shameful part of you is actually a bit of you that gives something back?”
All of Us Strangers hits theaters Dec. 22.