Stewart Looks Forward To 'Eleventh Hour', 'X3'

By Michelle
December 30, 2005 - 6:41 PM

While many Star Trek actors have protested that they felt pigeonholed by the television roles that made them famous, Patrick Stewart (Picard) says he has a different problem: he's typecast in Shakespearean roles as much as sci-fi.

"I was restless and envious of those actors who were wearing ordinary clothes and driving cars," Stewart told Dreamwatch (via Sci Fi Pulse). He said he had taken a role on the new British series The Eleventh Hour because of its contemporary setting and themes.

"The chance to do Eleventh Hour was for me absolutely perfect because I wanted to do some mainstream television work," explained Stewart. "A series like this – which is contemporary, urban and gritty [with a focus] on subjects that interested me and were fundamentally quite serious and yet still entertaining – was exactly what I was looking for." Though he was hoping to do more location work instead of being confined in a studio, he joked that Ashley Jensen "did all the driving...there’s one scene which was one day's work in the 12 weeks that we were in Manchester that was shot on a set in a studio."

Stewart acknowledged that the other franchise with which he is closely associated, The X-Men, went through "pre–production drama" when director Bryan Singer withdrew from the project and said that the pressure was "enormous" on the production crew. "The last 10 days that I was shooting – in fact a scene with myself and Sir Ian McKellen – we were shooting in the studio but from six o'clock in the evening until six o'clock in the morning," he recalled. But the script, he added, "is the best script of the three. It's very intense, it's very emotional, it's very personal about the individuals that we've already got to know in the first two movies."

Stewart warned that the upcoming film has "a number of quite significant deaths." He added that from the footage he has seen, "it's likely to be extraordinary" and that fans have no reason to be nervous.

The Eleventh Hour premieres on ITV on January 19th. The full interview with Stewart may be read in issue 137 of Dreamwatch; these excerpts are from Sci Fi Pulse.

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