Jeremy Strong on 'Succession' Season 4 and Why He Isolates Himself From His Co-Stars On Set
Ahead of Succession's return with season 4, the cast is opening up about what's in store for the Roy family in the upcoming episodes and what it's like to work on the Emmy-winning HBO drama, particularly when it comes to Jeremy Strong's notorious style of method acting on set.
While playing Kendall Roy, the 44-year-old actor tends to isolate himself from the rest of the cast. "It’d be one thing if I was working on Friends or something," Strong says in defense of himself while speaking to GQ. "I worked on a Guy Ritchie movie, and I approached that very differently."
This season, he even created a playlist that included tracks by A$AP Ferg, Kanye West and Phil Collins to help him stay in Kendall's headspace.
And according to Brian Cox, who plays Roy patriarch Logan, it can sometimes be frustrating -- but it doesn't take away from his co-star's performance. "It's f**king annoying," Cox tells Town & Country. "Don’t get me going on it." The longtime performer, however, does note that Strong "is a very good actor. And the rest of the ensemble is all OK with this. But knowing a character and what the character does is only part of the skill set."
In fact, Cox has a suggestion for Strong. "When you’ve got the gift, celebrate the gift. Go back to your trailer and have a hit of marijuana, you know?" he offers.
Acting aside, one thing is for sure: "[The family] gets tested more than it ever has been," Sarah Snook tells Town & Country. Not only that, but creator and showrunner Jesse Armstrong teases that they are in for "a bumpy ride" filled with a "lot of hard rendering and conflict."
After Kendall (Strong), Shiv (Snook) and Roman (Kieran Culkin) formed a loose alliance in order to take over Waystar Royco from their father, Logan (Cox), and prevent its sale to GoJo founder Lukas Matsson (Alexander Skarsgård), the battle lines have been firmly drawn with the family now officially at war with itself.
In season 4, which premieres on March 26, the deal between Waystar and Matsson moves ever closer, with the prospect of this seismic decision provoking further familial division among the Roys as they anticipate what the future holds for them once the sale is complete. The divide results in a power struggle that sees them also navigating their shrinking cultural and political dominance.
When it specifically comes to his character, Strong tells GQ he hopes "there are rungs on the ladder that are redemptive Kendall." While he has a "broad-strokes sense" of where things are going, he says, "I feel a sense of really wanting to, now that we’re at the one-yard line, finish this season and possibly the show, in a way that delivers a real payload of what this journey has been."
Meanwhile, Logan knows that none of his children has what it takes to take over the business. "He knows that they’re going to f**k it up. He knows that they haven’t got the stuff to do it but they’ll try anyway," Cox says to Town & Country, adding that when it comes to Shiv, in particular, she "can’t keep her mouth shut. She’s got no reserve, no tactical skill, no subtlety whatsoever, and that’s why she fell out of place."
GQ and Town & Country's March issues hit newsstands on Feb. 28.
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