I had the incredible honor of sitting down with acting legend John Noble. I won’t lie, as the conversation began, I had a bit of a fangirl moment. You see, I’ve seen every episode of the “Fringe” series (image below) where Noble starred as Dr. Walter Bishop. I’m also a huge fan of The Lord of the Rings franchise, in which Noble starred as Denethor. He has also starred in series such as “Sleepy Hollow”, “The Resident”, “Elementary”, and DC’s “Legends of Tomorrow.”
I could go on and on about me being a fan of Noble’s work or how talented he is. But the main topic of our discussion was his latest film, Silencio which is “A carefully underplayed sci-fi time displacement drama in the realm of The Butterfly Effect and Quantum Leap” (Starburst), Silencio fixes on a factual mystical marvel in the heart of Mexico that charges a young psychiatrist the mission of unraveling a real-life X-File!
In order to save her son’s life, Ana must find a powerful stone. Her grandfather (played by John Noble) originally discovered it in the Zone of Silence, the Bermuda Triangle of Mexico. Throughout her desperate search, Ana stumbles upon family secrets and enemies who believe the stone’s power is worth killing for.
From visionary filmmaker Lorena Villarreal comes Silencio – on VOD and DVD on May 14, 2019, from Uncork’d Entertainment.
John: “Tell me about Horror Fuel.”
Horror Fuel: “We do news, reviews, and interviews for horror movies, shows, books, games, and more.”
John: “Wow! It’s a huge area isn’t it, horror?”
Horror Fuel: “It really is.”
John: “I remember a couple of years ago I went to Horror Fest and I said to the booker, ‘This is a horror fest. What am I going here for?’ I went along and I was sitting in this area and I looked across and see these lines going out the door. I thought, ‘What the hell is that?’ It was The Walking Dead. My god, get me on it for at least one episode.”
Horror Fuel: “Between the show and all of its spin-offs and movies, I’m sure you could get a character. I’d love to see you in it.”
John: “This old corpse (laughter)? When it first came along I looked at it and thought, ‘Well, this won’t last very long.’ Well, I was wrong.”
Horror Fuel: “It’s been huge.”
John: “Very huge, Kelli. I just noticed your accent. Where are you from?”
Horror Fuel: “I’m from smack dab in the middle of Georgia.I’m a little southern.”
John: “It’s beautiful. I was there just recently filming for The Resident. So much stuff to do.”
Horror Fuel: “(dogs barking) I’m sorry. It’s storming pretty severely here and my three Labs don’t like bad weather. They are a bit on edge.”
John: “They don’t like the storms. My last dog was a Border Collie and she could hear them coming. If she got out she’d sprint wildly.”
Horror Fuel: “I saw every episode of Fringe. I’m a big fan of that series. How did you get into the headspace of Doctor Bishop?”
John: “I took that pretty seriously. I did my research in several ways. One, I researched the laws of genius and all of the anti-social behavior. You have to learn how to talk to a genius, an eccentric. He’s nuts. I was very interested in Bishop’s situation and the drugs that they would be giving him. That stuff was really important. You have to think, how long was he on these drugs and how long did it take to come off? What are the side effects and how long do they last? What physical mannerisms would he show? What did it do to his memory? It was quite a big undertaking. It was worth it.
I was also an avid reader of science magazines and love quantum mechanics. A lot of the stuff was really interesting, I mean really interesting. We never went too far off. I told the writers that I would do anything as long as it’s feasible. Sometimes they would give me the silliest things, but I would do it. I just felt that character. I don’t know what that says about me.”
Horror Fuel: “You were fantastic in Fringe. The whole series was fantastic.”
John: “Thank you. I really enjoyed doing it. For me, it’s my favorite show I’ve done.”
Horror Fuel: ” I have to ask about The Lord of the Rings.”
John: “That’s my other favorite. What would you like to know?”
Horror Fuel: “What was it like to be in that world?”
John: “Brilliant question. It was a world. He created a world in all of New Zeland. And all of New Zealand got on the bandwagon. The atmosphere was extraordinary. There was only one fellow that I know of that did not love it, but that’s because he didn’t show the right spirit. I remember turning up there because I was the last to go over there and I got off the plane and went to a fitting. Oh, it was astonishing. The costumes were beautiful. It was amazing what they did. You know, the beautiful weapons were all made by a master sword maker. My character was to never draw his sword, but it was perfect in every way. It was a beautiful sword. I think it went on tour.
There were no stars on that stage, ones not really known. Well, there was Elijah and Viggo. The reason for that was the language was quite difficult, it was quite Shakespearian. That was the reason I was given anyway.
There was nothing like it. Peter Jackson used to do fashion work. He had never done anything like this, he had done a few horror films and such. He had to work so hard to get this up and going and he brought us along for the ride and I’m extremely grateful for that. But emotionally it was tough. It was really demanding. I worked it out, but I had to do a lot of background work because some of it was what was in the movie but was not in the book.”
Horror Fuel: “It’s an amazing story and it was an amazing franchise. The films are so beautiful to watch.”
John: “They are aren’t they. It’s been nearly twenty years now. I’m still crazy about those people at the time we released it. Now, it’s being re-released for a whole new generation and I love it.”
Horror Fuel: “Oh, yeah. It’s brilliant. Everyone needs to see it.”
John: “Yes. Our photographer was Peter. What he did was unbelievable. He’s a wonderful man.”
Horror Fuel: ” I can only imagine what it was like.”
John: “Well, I’ll give you one more thing. It was one of the big horse charges, they called for some horsemen, people came with their horses from all over New Zealand. Everyone wanted to be in this, everyone. There were big battles, they were wonderful, but some of them could not ride very well (laughter). It was the experience of a lifetime.
I have photographs from the film. I was literally just looking at them. I don’t really collect things, I’m always moving around from place to place. ”
Horror Fuel: “If you will, please tell our readers your new film Silencio? I watched it this morning and really enjoyed it. It’s very different. I like that. I love films that aren’t carbon copies of dozens of films.”
John: “I think it’s a very interesting movie, I do. So far, we’ve gotten a lot of good reviews, but you know how that goes, you get a bad review and it will stick with you for life. Get a good a review and it just disappears.”
Horror Fuel: “Please tell me about your character James?”
John: “It happens all the time you know, scientific finds come from odd places. Somehow or other scientific teams find these discoveries. The Cone of Silence is one of those strange places. It’s true, there is a place where they found a meteor, it’s a mystery, instruments stop working. It’s a fascinating place.
A meteor did crash and that’s what this scientist found. The search every year. That’s what he does. In a sense, it’s really straight forward and mundane. There’s an older scientist and a younger scientist, and their team looking for bits of this particular meteor. We don’t know what qualities these meteors possess. The one in this film, if you have contact with it, strange things can happen. It can bring the dead back by time travel but there are consequences. It’s a hard thing for audiences to have to get ahold of ‘What is this quality? Why is this man suddenly being time traveled back?’
We have to just take a leap of faith. You have to take it and believe it. I didn’t mind taking a leap of faith because I know that there are so many things that I don’t know. The older I get the more I know. I’m fascinated by this brain plasticity stuff. The last twenty years it’s gone through the roof.
The second half of the movie is really all about children, he and his daughter. It’s really a charming love story about the family.
There is a bit of a tree line because it was originally in the Spanish language. The translations sometimes was a bit strange. The translation is a bit dodgy. I talked to Lorena every day. If she wanted me to try something, I would try it. I had a wonderful repour with Lorena. You have to sell it as an actor. We did. What else can I tell you about it?”
Horror Fuel: “Were did you film?”
John: “Mexico. That desert is bloody magnificent. We were about a hundred miles west of here. So bloody magnificent. Very nice people. Those days were brutal, but I liked it a lot. I had a beautiful time with those folks. The people, god, they looked after us so well. It did so much for morale. It was beautiful, this village. We stayed down there an extra week. We were sort of guests of the town. I want to go back. ”
Horror Fuel: “What do you hope that viewers take away from Silencio?”
John: “Well, more than anything, you should see an incredible depth of love. The character I play, what he’s going through is bloody awful but the love between him and his daughter is just beautiful. It’s very touching.”
Horror Fuel: “It is a very touching film, one filled with interesting science and a lot of hard decisions. But there are a lot of sweet moments in the film.”
John: “It is a very sweet film.”
It was a pleasure talking with John Noble about his projects and his role in the film Silencio, coming to VOD and DVD on May 14, 2019, from Uncork’d Entertainment. Be sure to visit the film’s official Facebook page.
If you haven’t seen The Lord of the Rings franchise, I urge you to do so immediately.