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Joseph Fiennes on Flash Forward

Published September 2, 2009 in Television
By Fred Topel | Image property of ABC
Flash Forward Flash Forward

Remember when Joseph Fiennes did Shakespeare in Love? That was a star making vehicle in a surprise Oscar sensation. Over a decade later, Fiennes joins the ranks of movie stars who headline TV series that are potentially higher profile than any movies. He is the lead on Flash Forward.

Joseph Fiennes Leads Flash Forward


“I think I have David [S. Goyer] to blame and his extraordinary team[’s] good writing,” Fiennes said. “I think film is a director's medium. [Television] just seems like it's a medium for writers. I was really excited by the script and the complexities and also really that the idea of a self-fulfilling prophecy, I think, is there's this conflict.”

On Flash Forward, the world gets a glimpse into its future on April 29. Fiennes plays a character who sees himself regressed back into alcoholism and separated from his wife, not a future to which he’d look forward.

“We discover characters that have such potential to become incredibly well rounded more so than you might get in film because you are not a slave to the generic one-, two-, three-act arc. I love the idea that they contradict themselves. There's this impending doom. They seem to judge each other before these dates arrive. There's no absolute. It's not set in stone that it would happen. So I love the conflict element.”



ABC hopes viewers will get obsessive about the potential futures of its cast week to week. “I’m attracted to the idea that if you were to pursue, to either embrace and make the future happen as you saw it, because we've got to understand there's a lot of positive flash forwards, and if you try to avoid your negative flash forwards, that if you build a strategy in which to either embrace or reject it, that it could absolutely bring about it in a sort of self-fulfilling-prophecy way. So I love that.”

Oh yeah, and now Fiennes gets to play a modern day action hero. “Good writing ultimately and, I think, the opportunity to get off a horse, out of a flouncy shirt, into a guy that wears a gun on his hip and some cuffs on the back of his belt, I'll tell you, that's quite nice.”

Flash Forward premieres this September on ABC.

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Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of ABC
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