Walton arrived in Park City, Utah January 23rd to attend The Sundance Film Festival to support his film Them That Follow which debuts January 27th. While in Park City, Walton attended The Creative Coalition’s Teachers Making A Difference Luncheon on January 26th. You can find photos from the event in the gallery now.
TVGuide.com — The end of the calendar year is a time for lists. In the world of TV criticism, it’s a time for lists that purport to rattle off the 10 best shows (or more!) of the year. As I tried desperately to remember 10 shows I watched this year that I would classify as being deserving of such accolades, I realized two things. First, I realized that the best show I watched in 2018 was actually Justified, which went off the air three years ago. And second, the first was true because 2018 was the year I finally gave up trying to stay current on the glut of new programming every network and streaming service was trying to shove into my eyeballs and just watched whatever the hell I wanted. So yeah, I rewatched Justified.
Let me tell you: It was liberating to return to the crime-ridden hills and hollers of Harlan, Kentucky, and spend time with U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) and outlaw Boyd Crowder (Walton Goggins) instead of worrying about whether or not I was caught up on the newest TV show. It’s exhausting trying to consume everything on TV so you can stay relevant at parties or whatever. So while all my coworkers were obsessing over the emotional stories of The Haunting of Hill House, I was happily reliving the glory of the Bennetts and Drew Thompson. While they were talking about Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, I was thinking about this photo of Timothy Olyphant leaning in a doorway …
While they were all about [insert some other new show here], I was dreaming of buying cross-stitched pillows featuring some of Justified’s best asshole-related quotes, like the most iconic one below:
There’s not a living room in the country that wouldn’t be improved with those words stitched across the couch pillows, and you know I’m right.
But Justified was all too frequently overlooked when it was on. Developed for TV by Graham Yost from a short story by Elmore Leonard, the series aired on FX from 2010 until 2015, which means it unfortunately sometimes got lost among the Breaking Bads and the Mad Mens of the supposed Golden Age of TV. In fact, it only made a fruitful showing at the Emmys when Breaking Bad wasn’t eligible. And although Olyphant and Goggins were both nominated for their excellent work that year, it was just supporting actress Margo Martindale who walked away with a shiny statuette for her work in the show’s perfect second season. And yes, Martindale more than deserved that Emmy, but Justified as a whole deserved far more recognition than it actually received. This is why I sometimes shout “Justified was robbed!” into the void completely unprompted. This was a damn good TV show, and one that is far better than some of the shows airing now.
However, what I learned during my most recent rewatch (obviously this was not the first time I’ve rewatched Justified since it ended) is not just that Season 3 was Peak Raylan Sexiness or that there’s real, honest comfort in revisiting shows, but that the series and its story are universal. The obstacles the characters are all trying to overcome are familiar; even if you didn’t grow up in a small, corrupt town like Harlan, you can understand the overwhelming feeling of being trapped by your hometown and never leaving it alive. Even if you don’t support Boyd’s lawless actions, you can appreciate his clever mind and understand his drive. (Though I will probably never forgive him for what he did to Dewey Crowe.) Every character was drawn with such depth (the Crowes of Season 5 excluded) that you were empathetic toward them even if they were also technically a villain.
But what made Justified so successful was obviously the complex relationship between Raylan and Boyd, two men who not only dug coal together, but were also two sides of the same coin. Raylan could have easily ended up an outlaw instead of a lawman, and although it’s something he isn’t likely to forget, knowing this always made his scenes with Boyd, full of banter though they were, feel loaded and that much more electrifying. The series’ sense of humor was also one of the sharpest I’ve seen anywhere, which is notable mostly because Justified is ostensibly a drama series. But the show was littered with instantly iconic moments and quips and memorable back-and-forths that went down like the smoothest Kentucky bourbon. It is also responsible for what might be the single most badass line in TV history:
Near the end of the show’s final season, Raylan told Boyd, “I gotta admit, there’s a small part of me that’s gonna miss this when it’s over.” He said this after revealing that he was coming for Boyd and the two men exchanged some of their trademark banter. But in 2018, there’s no reason any of this has to be over. Even if there are great new TV shows debuting year after year — and there absolutely are — there are still plenty of old ones that are just as good, if not better. And there’s absolutely no shame in embracing those shows and the comfort they provide simply because there’s something bright, shiny and new out there. That’s why I will probably continue to rewatch Justified every year and fall in love with it over and over and over again.
The actor and co-owner of spirits brand Mulholland Distilling gives his recommendations for dinner, drinks and holiday recovery.
HollywoodReporter.com — Like so many who work in Hollywood, I spend a lot of time on the road. On more than one occasion, the song most often played on holiday radio stations that I hear is “Please Come Home for Christmas.” But not this year… The schedule has changed and Daddy is coming home! Thank you, scheduling gods! You know that saying: There are four stages in life — you believe in Santa Claus, you don’t believe in Santa Claus, you are Santa Claus and you look like Santa Clause. I’m in the third group, showing early signs of joining the fourth, and I love it. It means after our beautiful family has opened presents and shared gifts of appreciation, my wife and I get to step out and have a date night (or two) on the town, reflecting on the year that’s passed and giving meaning to the year to come. These are a few places I’m looking forward to visiting the most.
FOR DINNER Dama in the fashion district is one of my newest favorites. Vintage Latin vibes, indoor-outdoor seating, tropical plants, dim lights and dark wood make you feel like you’re in Cuba. There’s a sense of nostalgia that I love, and the drinks and food reflect the relaxed blend of traditional and modern that Los Angeles does better than any city. I spent an evening at Dama when I was last home and wound up having a long chat with co-owner Steve Livigni. What a lovely human being. He opened a mezcal that I’d never tried. I’m hoping he still has some left.
FOR DRINKS Apotheke is just beautiful. I’ve been going to the one in NYC for eight years and am over the moon that we now have one in our own backyard. The moment you step into the unassuming Chinatown bar with velvet curtains, ornate furniture and a glowing marble bar, you feel the warmth of a bygone era, just what you want during the holidays. The cocktail list is also fucking insanely good. Order the Dizzying Intellect: It’s made with our gin, jicama, Kummel, lime, Spruce beer and Angostura bitters.
FOR HOLIDAY RECOVERY When I need a deliciously healthy meal after all the parties (I’m the dude who stashes cookies in his pockets), Botanica in Silver Lake is my go-to spot. It’s relaxingly health-conscious. Plus, the airy, bright space and serene, cozy patio are perfect for breakfast meetings, lunches and sharing a meal with friends.
The actor and co-owner of spirits brand Mulholland Distilling recommends his favorite L.A. haunts for every occasion, whether pitching a project or trying to feel right at home.
HollywoodReporter.com – Hey, everybody! Goggins here. THR has asked me to try writing a series of columns highlighting some of the hippest bars and restaurants in the City of Angels. I said, “If I can do it my way.” To which they said, ”Sure … yeah … OK … we think!”
A disclaimer: I own a spirits company called Mulholland Distilling along with my partner, Matthew Alper. We have an American whiskey, a New World gin and a vodka. They’re all award-winning and delicious. We hope you pick up a bottle. Some of the places I talk about serve Mulholland spirits, and some do not. OK, let’s do this.
To pitch a project
Where do you go for that meeting that can change your life? There are a number of places I could go to get my “yes” or “no,” but nine out of 10 times, I go to that mansion on the hill — yes, Chateau Marmont. There is something about the time it takes to walk up that long driveway, past the sitting area downstairs where the “cool” people smoke, and up those two flights of steps to the hostess stand that allows me to think, “I got this. I fucking got this!” It doesn’t matter if you get a table in the garden or inside one of the most romantic rooms in our city, you have the wind of the mighty Chateau at your back. I feel like I’m standing on the shoulders of the people that have been pitching and listening to stories in this hotel (once an apartment building) for almost 90 years. I feel a part of the history of this great exchange of ideas. That goes a long way when for a moment you step into that ring of vulnerability.
I always get a salad and fries, a sparkling water and a cappuccino with whole milk. I eat, small talk, eat and small talk until my lunch is finished, sink into the sofa, relax my shoulders, exhale and begin. If you get a “yes,” great, if you get a “no,” fuck it. I’ve had and given both. Regardless of the answer, you’ve had the chance to spend an afternoon in one of the most storied places in our city, the Chateau Marmont. Or the Chateau. Or, simply, the Chat!
Whenever I want to hang with an actor buddy or a director I want to impress, I take them to Manuela in the Arts District’s Hauser & Wirth building. If you haven’t been there, trust me, you’ll say, “Wow, I never knew this was here!” It’s beautiful, with a menu that will satiate the appetite of the most discerning Angeleno. It’s inside, yet outside, and quiet. It’s just what you need to dip into a long conversation about creativity. Ask for the Pearl (named after my partner’s daughter), made with our American whiskey, summer fig, vanilla bean, lemon and mint. Wish I was drinking one right now. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!
To feel right at home
Like all Angelenos, when I’ve been out of town working for a while, the thing I miss most (besides family and friends) is Mexican food. Nobody does it like Los Angeles. There are so many incredible places, but my go-to is El Compadre. It’s been in its original location on Sunset Boulevard for 45 years. I’ve been going for 20. In a world where everything is constantly changing, it’s nice to have a place that remains the same. I know everyone there — they’re like family. Nothing says, “You’re home, Goggins” like hot chips, a carne asada quesadilla and a flaming margarita!
Deadline.com — Justified and Vice Principals alum Walton Goggins will headline and executive produce the upcoming eight-episode second season of Deep State, I have learned. The spy thriller from Fox Networks Group Europe & Africa airs in 50 markets across the region.
Goggins will take over for Mark Strong, who starred in the first season. He will play Nathan Miller, a former CIA operative who now works in the private sector as a “Michael Clayton-like” fixer for the deep state. Also joining the series as new cast members are Victoria Hamilton (The Crown) as Meaghan Sullivan, a Republican U.S. senator who is determined to bring the illicit activities of the deep state to light; Lily Banda (The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind) as Aicha Konaté, a Malian aid worker intent on improving things for her country; and Shelley Conn (Liar), who plays Miller’s ex-wife.
Returning cast members for the second season include Joe Dempsie, Karima McAdams, Alistair Petrie and Anastasia Griffiths. Production takes place in South Africa, Morocco and the UK, with Season 2 set to premiere globally in 2019.
Co-created, directed and written by Matthew Parkhill (Rogue), Deep State is described as a grounded, visceral thriller that moves between the deeply personal story of a family man fighting to escape his past and the violent, dark excesses of government and global corporate power.
The first season centered on Max Easton (Strong), an ex-spy whose past comes back to haunt him when he’s summoned away from his new life in the Pyrenees by George White (Petrie), head of covert MI6/CIA team called The Section. White convinces Max to return to the field to avenge the death of his estranged son Harry. But the stakes are soon raised when Max finds himself at the heart of a covert intelligence war, immersed in a widespread conspiracy to profit from the spread of chaos in the Middle East.
The second season will expand and delve deeper into the murky world of the deep state. Having failed in the Middle East, those powers now are turning their attention to Sub-Saharan Africa and the scramble to plunder its natural resources. This is the first dirty war over clean energy. The season also will explore the origin stories of some of our favorite characters from Season 1 alongside witnessing the fall of a hero and orchestrating the making of a terrorist in the eyes of the West.
“At the heart of this project is this major new character, Nathan Miller (Goggins), an ex-CIA agent, who now acts on behalf of the deep state,” said showrunner Parkhill. “Our aim for the show is to move beyond the first season, expanding the shadowy world of the deep state and encourage viewers to delve deeper into how it goes about ruthlessly achieving its goals.”
The show, produced by Red Arrow’s Endor Productions, also airs on U.S. network Epix and has been sold to broadcasters including SBS in Australia, NBCUniversal in France, Super Channel in Canada, TVNZ in New Zealand and DRTV in Denmark.
HollywoodReporter.com — Lionsgate TV and New Regency’s take on the James Ellroy novel was eyed at CBS All Access but a deal could not be reached. There will be no eleventh-hour rescue for one of pilot season’s most promising dramas.
Efforts to find a new home for L.A. Confidential, originally developed for but passed over by CBS, have failed. The drama, based on the James Ellroy novel and subsequent feature film, had been eyed to land at CBS All Access, the subscription service from co-producers CBS Television Studios. However, following extended talks, a deal ultimately could not be reached.
Sources say Lionsgate TV, who produced the pilot alongside New Regency and CBS Television Studios, may have asked for a higher licensing fee than the SVOD home had expected. Others maintain that finances had little to do with it — given CBS All Access’ financial commitment to Star Trek: Discovery and the franchise’s other forthcoming series. What’s more, CBS All Access already has period drama Strange Angel, which is set in the 1930s.
L.A. Confidential revolved around three homicide detectives, a female reporter and an up-and-coming actress whose paths intersect while the detectives pursue a sadistic serial killer among the secrets and lies of glamorous and gritty 1950s Los Angeles. The drama, starring Brian J. Smith (Sense8) and Walton Goggins and written and exec produced by Jordan Harper (Gotham) and showrunner Anna Fricke, came in well but was considered darker than the traditional CBS fare. CBS All Access was considered a likely new home for the drama as co-producers CBS TV Studios continues to make a splash in streaming.
CBS picked up five new dramas for the 2018-19 broadcast season: Dick Wolf’s FBI, military drama The Code (which is undergoing recastings), Greg Berlanti and Ava DuVernay racial drama The Red Line, light drama God Friended Me (also from Berlanti) and a reboot of Magnum P.I.
Lionsgate TV and CBS TV Studios declined comment on L.A. Confidential.
Emmys 2018: Walton Goggins, Hollywood’s Ultimate Journeyman, Is Finally a Breakout Star
Walton Goggins delivered one of ET’s Standout Performances of the 2017-18 season.
ETOnline.com — Walton Goggins is, perhaps, Hollywood’s ultimate journeyman.
The actor, who has bounced between film and TV for the past 29 years after first appearing in a 1989 episode of The Heat of the Night, has been this way “since I was a young man,” he tells ET by phone, acknowledging, in some way, that he’s been “that guy from that show” for most of his career. In fact, to many, he has become known for supporting roles on The Shield, Justified and Sons of Anarchy — three shows that have earned Goggins critical praise and steady work if not “it” status or covers of magazines.
Then, in 2015, all of that changed thanks to, yes, another supporting role, but this time as Sheriff Chris Mannix in Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight. It was his second time working with Tarantino, after an even smaller role in Django Unchained. But this time he ran away with the entire film, stealing scenes from Samuel L. Jackson and Kurt Russell.
While on set of The Hateful Eight, outside of Telluride, Colorado, Goggins was offered the opportunity to star opposite Danny McBride in Vice Principals, a new comedy marking the return of McBride, Jody Hill and David Gordon Green to HBO after four seasons of Eastbound and Down. “I read the first three scripts and I was just blown away by it,” Goggins says. “I was just grateful for the invitation to come play with them.”
Soon, he was playing Chris Mannix for Tarantino during the day and at night getting into the character of Lee Russell, a conniving and sociopathic vice principal vying for the top job at a South Carolina high school. “You know, you’re tired when you fall asleep but it’s a high-class problem, isn’t it?” Goggins says of the experience.
The show, which ran for two seasons, premiered in July 2016 to rave reviews and has since earned Goggins photo spreads in high-profile magazines as well as also roles in History Channel’s Six, this year’s big-budget films Maze Runner: The Death Cure, Tomb Raiderand Ant-Man and the Wasp, and the lead in the CBS pilot for a new TV adaptation of L.A. Confidential.
In a conversation with ET, Goggins reflects on playing Lee Russell, the most diabolical character of his career, and how much of his career is instinct versus luck.
ET: You auditioned for Eastbound and Down and didn’t get the role. But then the opportunity to audition for Vice Principals came back around and you got that. What was it about Eastbound that wasn’t a right fit, but Vice Principals worked out?
Walton Goggins: Well, that’s really interesting. I think they were looking for something different for Eastbound and Down, and when I walked in, I knew that. At least, I felt in my heart that if I got into a room with Danny, there would be chemistry. Real chemistry. That’s what you hope with people that you look up to and it was, there was a lot of chemistry in this reading. I think by my very nature, my take on things is pretty dark. I’m not a comedian by trade. I’m just a storyteller, and most of the actors in the room when I showed up were all people from SNL and comedians. So I didn’t think I had a shot in hell of ever getting that whatsoever. It’s not really ever about that for me, it’s just about the opportunity to come play with someone you respect and admire. I think because of that reading, they were kind of going back and forth on whether or not they wanted to go darker with this particular role on Eastbound and Down. Then they made the right decision and they went with Jason Sudeikis. But in their mind, when it came to Lee Russell and when it came to Vice Principals,they wanted to go a different direction. They wanted to mine these characters for who they are, their tragedies as well as their comedic experiences.
You have had such a great track record with The Shield, Justified, Sons of Anarchy and now Vice Principals. When it comes to being involved in these projects and knowing they’re going to be so great, how much of it is instinct and how much of it is luck?
Oh, God, The Shield was luck. For sure. [Creator] Shawn Ryan had been around a little bit, but it was really his first time manning the wheel, so no one knew. But it was on the page. The same with Justified. It’s Elmore Leonard [who authored the short story on which the series is based], so we had that going with us, and the great Tim Olyphant. With all of these things, it is luck. I suppose the instinct or the gut feeling is the other part of that. I read Boyd Crowder and I just saw him immediately. I saw Shane McDonnell instantly. I saw Venus Van Dam immediately and I saw Lee Russell immediately. So I think it’s a combination of luck and just knowing when I can really add something to this or that I can help this storyteller share their story. Continue Reading →
Walton Goggins is the kind of actor whose name you might not instantly recognize, but who you’ve probably seen in dozens of movies and TV shows, quite often as one of the villains, like in 2000’s “Shanghai Noon” opposite Jackie Chan or 2010’s “Predators.” His most important claim to fame—and to household name status—arguably came when he started playing in the award-winning crime drama series “The Shield,” which, in turn, is arguably one of the best and most influential cop shows ever. From then on, Goggins’ career trajectory kept rising, especially on the big screen. Since 2010, he’s appeared in two movies by Quentin Tarantino (“Django Unchained” and “The Hateful Eight”), landed another leading role in another hit crime drama series (“Justified”), joined one of the better-received big screen adaptations of a video game (this year’s “Tomb Raider”) and even joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe (in “Ant-Man and the Wasp”). For sure, picking the brains of an actor of this caliber allowed us to gain a lot of new insight into the what goes on in Hollywood and beyond.
DAMAN: So, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” is set to hit theaters this June. We understand that you can’t really disclose much about the movie itself, but what would you say was the best part of working on this project?
Walton Goggins: Well, I think that the first film was so unbelievably smart and what director Peyton Reed did with that story in conjunction with Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas and all the rest just made me gut laugh. It was as evolved and quick-witted as anything I’ve seen in a long time and that spirit continues in “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” Just to be included in the Marvel Cinematic Universe for any actor is a real feather in one’s cap, you know. They’ve been doing what they’ve been doing for 10 years now and it’s extraordinary if you look at the movies that have come out of these stories over the last decade. And now I finally have some pull with my son’s friends; now they finally know who I am. [ Laughs ]
DA: Right now, however, a lot of moviegoers would best remember you as Mathias Vogel, the villain in “Tomb Raider.” What do you remember the most—what is your fondest memory—of working on “Tomb Raider”?
WG: First and foremost, it was the story. What young person wouldn’t want to make some great discovery in one’s life? It was that journey— turning myself over to that journey and playing Mathias Vogel—that was so exhilarating. And that coupled with getting to have that experience with one of my favorite actors, Alicia Vikander, was a dream come true for me, really. I always wanted to do a movie like that and I thought that it could be done a little differently. And Roar Urtaugh and Graham King, director and producer respectively, also had a similar vision. Whenever you get a group of people that are actively trying to do something different and dig a little deeper on a movie of that scale, you feel like you’re doing something new. And I can speak for all of us when I say we just had the greatest time. Probably the last answer to your question was getting the opportunity to spend so much time in Africa, especially in South Africa.
DA: Your character in a movie, Mathias Vogel, is often described as a relatable villain—or perhaps “understandable” would be a better word. We’ve always wondered: How much of this characterization comes from the writers and how much comes from you?
WG: Well, you know, that’s a great question and I would say it’s a combination of both. When I read [the script] for the first time, it was all there on the page. So often villains in movies like this are one-dimensional and you understand their motivations at first glance, even sometimes without them speaking a word. But this was different and I felt that it’s a journey that I really wanted to go on, because I didn’t fully understand where Mathias was coming from. And I felt that his motivations were pure. In a world where we have so many stories available on a daily basis, throughout the world, I think that audiences by and large are just smarter, and I think that they demand more from their stories. So, it was a real opportunity to dig in and understand this world from Mathias Vogel’s point of view, and to know that he is a very different person today than he was the day that he the book. This show is really a retelling of the novel itself and I’m really proud of it. I can’t talk too much about it beyond that, but suffice to say we’ll find out if we get picked up in the next couple of weeks. You know, the opportunity to go back to an analog world and to explore this city that I love so much—Los Angeles—at a time that was both glamorous and extremely violent and subversive on a number of levels was a real eye- opener. And I had a great time.
DA: You’ve been playing on TV since 1989, what would you say has been the biggest change in how TV series are produced then and now?
WG: I think that the biggest difference is the transition from film to digital. When we were doing “The comes to time. You’re not loading the camera or canning the film, as they say. And that’s been maybe the biggest change. That and the quality of story. You know, when I started in 1989, the storytelling and television was very different. Then came along “The Sopranos” and “The Shield” and it turned into a real serialized format. It’s as if you’re watching a novel instead of reading it.
DA: The 2010s sees you playing in two movies by Quentin Tarantino— “Django Unchained” and “The Hateful Eight”—and now joining the MCU. How do you think will you eventually top all that
WG: You know, I don’t live my life in the past, so I don’t feel like I have anything to top. A new day is a new showed up on that island—and to explore that as an actor. I think that Roar Uthaug wanted to do the same and what you see is really kind of a collaboration to that end.
DA: Moving on to your upcoming works, there’s the pilot for the “L.A. Confidential” TV series. Most people associate the title with the 1997 movie adaptation, so can you tell us a bit about this 2018 version?
WG: Yes, we just wrapped a couple of weeks ago and it is based on James Elroy’s novel. While the movie, “L.A. Confidential,” was also based on Elroy’s novel it really only explored Shield”—I did “The Shield” for seven years—we filmed that on 16mm and you only had two takes, really, for the most part and a take could only go as long as the amount of film that we had in the mag. For a 16mm mag it was about eight to nine and a half minutes. So, you had to get it right and then you had to move on, because you didn’t have the time that you have with digital. Now you’re able to leave a take running for five or six minutes—seven, eight, ten, twenty minutes if you want. While the magic is still there the precision has been lost, I think, because digital is a little more forgiving when it day. The experiences that come from this day will be what they are, not to be compared to what came before it or to what comes after it, to be quite honest with you. I just don’t look at any given day that way, let alone a season of my life and in entertainment. Hopefully, at the end of my experience on this planet, I will be able to share with my son and my friends a body of work that tells a story—bigger than me, but certainly a part of me. That’s really kind of how I approach my life and it’s certainly how I approach my job.
I’ve added high quality screen captures of Walton as Richard ‘RIP’ Taggart from the HISTORY series SIX which premiered its second season this past Memorial Day. You can view those captures along with an episodic still in the gallery now.