"He’s quite a dude!" actor Adrien Jolivet on his character in 'Deep State'

The actor-comedian speaks about his role in Fox's upcoming series and what to expect from the show, and his future projects


                            "He’s quite a dude!" actor Adrien Jolivet on his character in 'Deep State'
(L-R) Actors Adrien Jolivet and Melvil Poupaud (Source: Getty Images)

Fox's 'Deep State' will became the network's first-ever commissioned script outside the shores of the United States and will premiere in the country on EPIX on June 17. The thriller series follows former MI6 agent Mark Strong as he's yanked out of his idyllic retreat with his wife and children and pulled back into a world of espionage and betrayal. The series made its bow in the UK on April 5.

With the premiere of the much-awaited show less than a week away, we caught up with star Adrien Jolivet for an email interview. Jolivet, who plays Noah in the action thriller, has made his name as a comedian in France and appeared in numerous French films.

We had the opportunity to pick his brain on 'Deep State,' his career choices, and the projects he may be working on for the future, with Jolivet giving us some crisp answers.

1. You play the role of Noah in 'Deep State,' which will be premiering in the US next month. Can you give us a little bit of insight into your character?

Noah is Anna Easton’s brother and the fun uncle to Max Easton’s daughters. He is a bit of an outsider driving himself around trying to make the best of his daily life. He’s quite a dude!

2. What was the casting process like for the show?

An audition tape made at home. I really like to do casting this way. It makes me, as an actor, feel more comfortable and helps to develop a strong proposal for the character.

3. Because it's so action-packed, did you have to undergo extra preparation/training before undertaking the role?

Definitely, I had to be ready to run, shout and fall. But I have to admit: it’s my daily routine, I like to live an active lifestyle.

4. 'Deep State' has quite the stellar cast. Over the many weeks/months I assumed you worked on the show, did you develop a close friendship with anyone? What was the camaraderie on the sets like?

I’m always thrilled to discover actors' methods on set. The showrunner Matthew Parkhill is such an authentic and gentle person. I knew he would have a bunch of nice actors around him, and I wasn’t disappointed. We are all good friends and that doesn’t happen all the time.

5. Espionage thriller is a subject well-explored in Hollywood. What sets 'Deep State' apart from the rest of them? 

I suppose the show tries to find some links between family/friendship and secret services/politics. It begs the question where is the truth, who is telling the truth and who is really pulling the strings? The daily routine of our hero Max Easton, played by Mark Strong, is interesting as he’s a family man, and yet he’s led such a violent life in the past and again now.

6. 'Deep State' has already premiered in the UK So, without giving away spoilers, what would you say fans can look out for when the show premieres across the Atlantic next month?

You want to know who is the bad guy? Well, I can’t tell you…

7. You've acted in quite a few French films in your career. What then inspired you to try out for a role in a show like 'Deep State'? What is the most glaring difference between working in French cinema and Hollywood?

I think for an actor, the text and the 'thinking' can be your worst enemies. So, I mostly take my inspiration from the actors, directors, and technicians during preparation to help me try to feel and understand what’s going on. Then, I try to find within me something original that will create the very best version of this character. As for the difference, I can’t say because every project has its own specific values.

8. Which role would you say you're the proudest of? Which one did you have the most difficulty portraying on screen?

I’m proud of all the roles and characters I portrayed on screen. All the directors and writers I worked with had something to say to the audience. I feel blessed bringing their message to life. I’m mostly a happy person who enjoys life. In a French TV movie 'Fragile,' I had to commit suicide. It was quite shocking.

9. You've also composed music. Could you tell us a little bit more about that part of your career?

Without music, life sucks. So I decided to make my life better by composing and playing instruments. Actors sometimes have a lot of spare time. But actors who compose music don’t have a minute for themselves. That’s what I love about it. 

 10. Tell us about any future projects you have coming up.

A new music project for cinema. And I’ve got a part in a new show in France. I can’t say anything about it yet because you know what it is like… I feel blessed and I don’t want luck to turn his back on me.