It’s been a long time since John Le Carré’s literary hero George Smiley has been seen on screen, either big or small, but with Focus Features’ Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, the English language debut for Tomas Alfredson, director of the highly acclaimed Swedish vampire flick Let the Right One In, he’s back, this time played by Gary Oldman in what many are considering his strongest performances in years.
In this movie, Smiley is looking for a mole in the Secret Service, one that is sharing information with the Russians, compromising their every move, and surrounding Oldman as fellow agents is one of the finest casts in recent memory, including recent Oscar winner Colin Firth, John Hurt, Toby Jones, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, Ciaran Hinds and more.
A few weeks back, ComingSoon.net attended the New York junket for the film and in the video interviews below, we spoke with Oldman, Firth and director Tomas Alfredson about how each of them came to the project, their own relation to John Le Carré and the Cold War, how Oldman prepared to play a secret agent significantly older than he really is and more.
A few days later, at the Gotham Independent Film Awards, we had another chance to speak with Oldman, not just about his role in “Tinker, Tailor,” but also about returning as Commissioner James Gordon in next year’s The Dark Knight Rises:
Since Oldman hasn’t been out and about promoting a film in quite some time, we wondered whether he had any idea that him playing George Smiley would be getting so much attention and awards accolades. “No, you just go and make another film,” he admitted. “We knew that we had something special. It’s not every day that you get a script like this, Tomas and the cast and the opportunity to play a role like Smiley. Yeah, you kind of sense that it’s got something going, but there’s two components actually to the whole thing – You don’t know what the reviews are going to be like and they could kill you, and you don’t know if there’s an audience. I know that there’s an audience for ‘The Dark Knight Rises,’ but generally and especially for an indie movie – and ‘Tinker, Tailor, Soldier,’ it’s an indie. Universal wouldn’t touch it, they have a title with Working Title, but it was understandable why. It’s a spy genre thing set in the ’70s, first English speaking film (for the director), but you just go in for another day’s work.”
When Oldman told us the producers have been talking about doing another movie with George Smiley based on John Le Carr