Ewan McGregor has revealed he hadn’t seen the first two seasons of Fargo before being approached about being in Season 3.
The actor said he was asked about being on the FX show while he was on a ski trip, and binged both seasons in a week.
He also admitted that he found doing the Minnesotan accent for his dual role as Emmit and Ray Stussy extremely difficult. He said: “It’s a very, very hard accent to lock into…it’s the hardest accent I’ve ever done — and I’ve done Dutch.”
However, he said he didn’t find playing two roles at the same time difficult, as he has previous experience doubling up characters, like he did in 2005 movie The Island.
And he revealed he turned up unscheduled on the first day of filming because he “didn’t like the idea of it starting without my being there”.
McGregor made the revelations while speaking at the Television Critics’ Association winter press tour alongside executive producer Warren Littlefield, and co-stars Carrie Coon, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, David Thewlis, and Michael Stuhlbarg.
Winstead told the event that the movie Fargo was one of her favorite films, and when she got the call, she immediately said yes.
She plays Ray’s cunning and “crafty” bridge-playing ace girlfriend, Nikki Swango — who she described as “smart and savvy, and with the capacity to be conniving”.
Meanwhile, Coon said she loved both the first and second seasons of the series. She also admitted she originally thought FX was mistaken to turn the movie into a TV show, but said she is happy that she was proved wrong.
Showrunner Warren Littlefield said the Coen Brothers — who made the film — had been “incredibly respectful” in allowing the series’ creator Noah Hawley to take control of the project.
It is one of several FX series Hawley is working on, as he is also a showrunner for Legion — which the creators have called a “superhero show like no other” — and a new series based on Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle.
However Littlefield said Joel and Ethan Coen had an “open invitation” to write or direct episodes, adding: “It would be sensational.”
Hawley has said in previous interviews that the third season of Fargo will take place in 2010, four years after the first season’s storyline. Count on Allison Tolman and other Season 1 Fargo players to resurface in guest spots.
Fargo has added to the cast of its third installment, with Thewlis, Stulhbarg and Jim Gaffigan among those who have joined previously announced stars McGregor, Coon and Winstead.
Season 3 is a true crime-type tale set in Eden Valley, Minnesota, and centered on Emmit Stussy, the Parking Lot King of Minnesota, and his slightly younger less successful brother Ray Stussy (both played by Ewan McGregor).
Emmit sees himself as an “American success story” whereas Ray is a complicated mess.
In his brother’s shadow his whole life, Ray is a “balding and pot-bellied parole officer” with a chip on his shoulder over his lousy cards.
The brothers’ animus comes to a head with a “petty” theft which expands to “murder, mobsters and cut-throat competitive bridge”.
Watch for divorcee mom Carrie Coon cast as Gloria Burgle, the steady chief of the local police department.
David Thewlis portrays V.M. Vargas, an enigmatic loner and “true capitalist” who delivers Emmit the bad news that the Parking Lot King of Minnesota has just become partners with his employers, whose business interests lay outside the law.
Michael Stuhlbarg is cast as Sy Feltz, Emmit’s right-hand man and consigliere.
Jim Gaffigan (The Bleeder) will play Donny Mashman, Gloria’s deputy at the local police department.
Scoot McNairy is cast as Maurice LeFay, a dodgy stoner with a criminal past, Shea Whigham as Meeker County Chief of Police Moe Dammick, and Karan Soni plays scientist Dr. Homer Gilruth.
Fred Melamed is cast as Howard Zimmerman, a “mover and a shaker” for telling tales and making money plus Thomas Mann will play Thaddeus Mobley, a science fiction author of note.
Production is set to begin in Calgary in January for an April 2017 premiere.