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By Suzanne

Emily Deschanel

Interview with Emily Deschanel (Temperance Brennan) of "Bones" December 3, 2010.

This was an entertaining conference call. Unfortunately, I did not get to ask a question. They only had 35 minutes, and she likes to talk - a lot! It was very interesting, anyway, though! You will see below...

Final Transcript
FBC PUBLICITY: The Bones Conference with Emily Deschanel
December 3, 2010/1:00 p.m. EST

Kim Kurland Ė FBC Publicity
Emily Deschanel Ė Dr. Temperance ĎBonesí Brennan, Bones

I would now like to turn the conference over to Kim Kurland.

K. Kurland: Hi, everybody. I just wanted to thank you for taking part in this call today with Emily. She is going to be taking questions about next weekís episode, ďThe Doctor in the Photo,Ē which is sort of a unique episode for us.

Moderator: Our first question will come from the line of Megan Ward with

M. Ward: In next weekís episode, Brennan feels a strong connection to the victim of the case. How was it play Brennan in such a vulnerable light?

E. Deschanel: Itís hard because you have to go through all the emotions that sheís going through. At the same time, itís refreshing because itís a very different episode than most episodes of the show. Itís kind of strange. Itís a different episode. I think it was one of my favorite scripts. I havenít seen the actual final cut yet, but hopefully, itíll be one of my favorite episodes.

Itís just very unique. Itís very personal to Brennan. She is facing her own mortality and also looking at her life and seeing what she would be leaving behind when she dies. You donít see that side of Brennan very often. She becomes very vulnerable trying to solve this case, which she believes to beó If people havenít seen or donít know basically, there is a woman who is killed. Sheís a doctor. When they started listing the different qualities of this person, Brennan thinks is sounds very familiar, whether theyíre physical or personal qualities. Then, even looking at the photograph of the person who died, it looks like Brennan when she looks at it. Itís from Brennanís perspective, this episode.

Itís very interesting, but kind of terrifying for Brennan and confusing. Sheís visited by a night watchman who weíre not even sure if he exists or not in real life. Enrico Colantoni played that part, who Iíve always loved as an actor, so it was a lot of fun to work with him.

Yes, it was definitely hard to go through that because I was also in every single scene of this episode. There were absolutely no breaks whatsoever.

M. Ward: Speaking of Brennan as a whole, does it ever get exhausting playing Brennan, because sheís so serious and factual? You, yourself always come across as so lively. Is it hard to be in that state of mind a lot?

E. Deschanel: Yes and no. I think that Brennan has (a) become a lot more open over the years and you get to see her kind of dorky, quirky side at times, which is fun. I hang on to those moments and try to incorporate things like that in every episode. My favorite things about people in general is that they have contradictions. Brennan is no exception to that rule. I love exploring the contradictions of her character and all of that.

No, Iím an actor, too. So playing a character whoís very different from myself is one of the best things to happen to me, especially in a television series. So many times people are hired to play something very close to who they are in real life. Itís a wonderful opportunity to play this character who is very different. I canít say that I donít possess some qualities that are similar or that sometimes I donít remind myself of her, when I behave like a real, I donít know, nerdóI say that in the most affectionate wayóbut, Iím very different. So, I love the fact that I am different from the character. But, thatís true sometimes, especially when youíre doing certain episodes. You come home and you take it home a little bit with you.

I have tried to make boundaries for myself where I leave work at work. If I have lines to learn, I do all my acting work on the weekends and then I learn my lines the day before. If thereís any work that needs to be done before the next day, I do it at work. I donít leave work until Iíve finished that. I donít like to take work home with me. That means staying late even after working 15 hours. Iíll stay late an hour or two just to make sure I get everything right. I try to set those boundaries so I donít take things home, but that said, it does leak into your personal life sometimes. I think that was a really long answer to your question, but maybe I answered like ten more.

Moderator: You do have a question from the line of Sandra Gonzales with Entertainment Weekly.

S. Gonzales: In next weekís episode, I think some of us have had a chance to see it, thanks to Fox. You do a fantastic scene with David in the car when youíre talking to him. Itís a really somber moment. Can you tell us a little bit about what it was like filming that emotionally charged scene? That actually had me crying, too.

E. Deschanel: Oh, thatísóI shouldnít say, ďThatís nice. Iím glad you cried,Ē but I guess we always want to affect people emotionally. Yes, it was one of those scenes that you know is there. You prepare for it acting-wise. You know itís coming up, but itís one of those things that says that youíre crying in the scene. Then, youíre like, ďItís okay if I donít cry. I donít have to cry,Ē but then walking in, everyoneís expecting that. So, thereís a lot of pressure of that.

Itís one of those things as an actor that you kind of dread those scenes in a way, because youíd rather it just not be written in and see if your emotions go to that place or not. But, at the same time, itís good to have those markers as an actor to know where your breaking points are for the character, and where in the story is the low point. Iím going backwards.

But, basically the scene, Brennan has to face her own life because this woman has died, she doesnít have much of a personal life. The only people who listed her missing are her people at work. She doesnít have friends. She had some kind of romance with a guy. Nothing ever happened. No one really missed her. I think isnít that almost every humanís worst fears, dying and no one misses you and no one notices. So, this affects Brennan greatly. She starts relating to the character, believing that itís her. She starts seeing her own life and seeing that she made a mistake when she said no to Booth last year. She goes out on a limb and says to Booth, ďIím here.Ē

I donít know how much people want to reveal before the episode airs and I donít know how much I should reveal, but I know that some of you guys must have seen it. It forces Brennan into a place where she is bold and kind of aware of her feelings in a way that she hasnít been before. It takes a huge, very strange experience for her to become aware of her feelings. Hart and IóHartís the creator of the showóweíve always talked about how Brennan may have these feelings for Booth, but sheís the last person to know in a way. Here, it takes a very strange experience for her to face her feelings and to see them. I hope that answers the question.

S. Gonzales: Yes, definitely. It goes to that really somber place, but do you feel that sort of ends on a positive note on this? Thatís sort of the vibe that I got from the episode.

E. Deschanel: I think so. I think so. I think that she realizes that she isnít that woman. She has friends. She has people who love her and she loves. Sheís not as extreme as this person, but itís always good to have those reminders in life to see Who am I?. What am I doing with my life? Am I working my whole life away? Am I not spending time with people that are important? Am I not taking a chance on something that Iím going to regret on my deathbed? If I die tomorrow, would I be happy with my life as it is right now?

I think one thing that Iíll say doing the show, being around death all the time or fake death or whateveróin Brennanís Ö real deathóyou are aware of your mortality. You canít help thinking about that. I think that as a result you have to become more bold in your life and take chances. I think thatís what Brennan is doing.

I think that thatís not a bad thing. I think thatís a wonderful thing to make the most of our lives while we have it. Weíre not here for that long. I think that Brennan took that chance. Whether it worked out or not doesnít matter as much as the fact that she did take that chance. I think that it is a happy ending in that way, even if it is hard and sad, but life is hard and sad at times. The whole point is we get through those times. I think that she still has all those people in her life and she still has all those friends and people who care about her. Thatís what really matters.

Moderator: Next, weíll go to the line of Matt Mitovitch with

M. Mitovitch: Do you think weíll be left with any lasting Ö change for Temperance after this episode or is she kind of like, ďThatís that,Ē after she makes that pitch to Booth?

E. Deschanel: I think youíll see both. Honestly, Brennanís the kind of person that the closer she gets to opening up her feelings, the more closed off she becomes. After that, I think she becomes even more closed off in a way. So, there is a reaction, but it may not be the reaction people want from Brennan. She rarely is predictable in that way. I think youíll see Brennan becoming more protected than she has been even. Then at times, sheís open. I think it affects her, but I think it affects her in many different kind of opposing ways and youíll see in episodes to come. Weíre still reading and shooting episodes that are coming up, so weíre only few ahead of this one.

M. Mitovitch: The Ö and Hannahís Ö dynamic, thatís going to continue on. Might it get even more serious?

E. Deschanel: Say that again. The whole, what dynamic did you say?

M. Mitovitch: Between Hannah and Booth, might that get more serious as it goes on?

E. Deschanel: Yes, it actually does get more serious. That creates the whole situation for all of them. One thing I must say I love about this dynamic between Hannah and Booth and Brennan is tható Hannah is not a bad person. So many times, you see a character come in as a love triangle. The two leads, people want them to get together. I think that you have to like her andóthatís not an order, but I feel like sheís a nice personóBrennan certainly likes her and respects her.

I think thereís a lot of internal conflicts rather than there being external conflicts. Thereís internal conflicts in Brennan because she loves Booth. She wants to be with Booth. Sheís realizing this, but because she loves Booth, she wants him to be happy. Booth is happy with Hannah now and thatís really hard to see. But, then she also wants him to be happy because she loves him and she cares for him. Then, she also sees that Hannah is a wonderful, smart, tough, cool, beautiful woman. You canít really blame Booth for falling in love with her. Thereís all these conflicting emotions just within one character alone. I just love that.

I think itís great to have conflict between characters, within characters where no oneís intending bad things. Itís just life. Itís just what happens. Iíve seen this happen in life so many times, where thereís feelings for people and they donít feel the same way, but then you canít blame them. I think itís a wonderful kind of push and pull and dance, if you will, between the characters. I really like that dynamic, but it does get more serious with Hannah.

Moderator: Weíll go to the line of Marissa Roffman with

M. Roffman: Obviously, you did mention the Hannah and Brennan friendship, but as of now, Hannah isnít really aware of what went down with Booth and Brennan last season. Is that going to complicate the friendship when she finds out?

E. Deschanel: Say that again. Is wható? Sorry, sometimes, itís hard for me to hear this.

M. Roffman: Is the history of Booth and Brennan going to complicate the Brennan and Hannah friendship going forward?

E. Deschanel: Yes, it will. Yes, it will. Itís going to be revealed in some way to Hannah about the situation with Brennan and Booth and Brennan revealing her feelings. It definitely creates a situation with Hannah and Brennan in their friendship. Itís an interesting dynamic between these two that you donít see very often, but it does definitely create some issues and conflict and things like that.

M. Roffman: Are we going to see Booth start to have some doubts about his decision to turn Brennan down at all? Or, is he going to be steadfast, and, ďNope, I made the right decision. Hannah is it.Ē

E. Deschanel: Thatís hard for me to say. Letís just say, so far I havenít seen that yet, but I canít say it wonít come. I mean weíre only a few ahead of this episode. I donít want to speak for another character in a way, too, in what heís feeling while heís doing scenes, but in terms of the actual script, I have not seen that yet.

Moderator: Next, weíll go to the line of Hal Boedeker with Orlando Sentinel.

H. Boedeker: I wanted to ask about the showís run. I mean six years is a really good run. Why do you think the show is doing so well? It seems to beóthe ratings last night were very good. I also wanted to ask about Kathy Reichs and the foundation that she gave the series.

E. Deschanel: Ask about Kathy Reichs and what is the specific questionó?

H. Boedeker: The foundation she gave the series. The start she gave it Ö her career writing.

E. Deschanel: Wow, itís hard for me to say what the success is and itís hard for me to be objective about something that Iím absolutely in the middle of right now. But, when people come up to me and are fans of the show, a lot of people say, ďItís the only show that I can watch with my husband,Ē or, ďItís the only show I can watch with my family, or my wife.Ē Everyone likes different things. I think that one of the qualities of our show that may have been a detriment at times and may have not made us the huge hit right away that some other shows have been is the fact that itís so many different things.

I mean we have science, we have forensics, we are solving crimes, but we also have humor. We have character relationships, which kind of are the backbone of the whole show. Then, you have episodes that are more poignant and more serious and some that are more action filled. You kind of never know what youíre going to get. There are certain things that you know they will have: the relationships, thereís those dynamics, great characters, witty dialog, and stuff like that. But, there are so many elements that different people are drawn to for different reasons.

As for Kathy Reichs, she has a huge, huge following of people reading her books. We had, from the beginning, I think it really helped us to (a) have that, and also have David Boreanaz, his incredible success. So many people are such huge fans of his from Angel and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. So we had some fan base going in. That may be why weíve had such loyal fans, certainly, from the beginning who followed us from so many different time slots.

Absolutely, Kathy Reichs is a very successful writer. So many people love her books; love the Temperance Brennan books. I think that it was hard at the beginning because we had to explain that this Temperance Brennan is actually based on Kathy Reichs, not Temperance Brennan in the book. Itís only loosely based on Kathy Reichs. But, at the same time, if youíre a fan of the books, I think youíll be a fan of the show because this Temperance Brennan is a different Temperance Brennan, but there are definitely similarities from the book to the show. There are manyó

H. Boedeker: Can I ask you a quick follow-up? How long do you want to go with this show? Do you feel like youíre peaking?

E. Deschanel: Itís such a good question. Itís so hard to know. I wish I had that perspective. Itís something that I donít really have control over. At this point, I have a contract for eight seasons, so I canít say, ďIím done now.Ē Iíd rather not say, ďWeíre peaking, Iím done,Ē because Iíd be in trouble for breaking my contract. Iíd rather just think that weíre going for at least eight seasons or something.

No, itís something as an actor that you only have a certain amount of control over. You look at certain shows that last for ten years and that is just incredible. I just canít believe weíve been here for six seasons. Not because I donít believe in the show and I donít love it and I doní think it deserves a huge audience. Itís just that thereís so many wonderful shows that get cancelled in the first season. Thereís so many wonderful shows that donít get picked up in the first place. I know Iím so lucky to be doing the show; the show that I love doing and a character that I have such affection for. Iím just incredibly lucky.

But, I love doing this show. When I started, I thought, ďThree seasons. Thatís the most. Thatís such a long time. Iíll be exhausted by then. I will be done and then I can move on to other things.Ē Then, it keeps going, but Iíve never thought, ďOh, we got picked up for another season. Oh, darn it. I wish that hadnít happened.Ē Iíve always been excited when weíve been picked up for another season. I think that will continue, but who knows. Maybe, talk to meóweíll go for 11 years and I might be like, ďIím done with the show. Iím sick of it,Ē but right now Iím still enjoying myself and loving it, and just counting my lucky stars.

Moderator: Next, weíll go to the line of Lara Martin with Digital Spy.

L. Martin: I was wondering with this case coming up in next weekís episode, is it going to affect how she feels about her career at all or how much time she dedicates to work? Because I know, she was disillusioned before, does that come up again?

E. Deschanel: Yes. It does come up a bit, but not as much anymore. I think Brennan realized when she was away from it how much she missed it. I think thatís a small factor, but not a big one. I think that she realizes that sheís good at this. She enjoys this. She loves solving crimes and she loves doing it with the team that she does it with. She loves seeing the results of her work immediately; well, not always immediately, but you what I mean.

You can actually affect the world when you are solving crimes as opposed to identifying ancient remains. Sure, it can impact science in such a huge way. But right now, youíre solving a crime. Youíre putting people behind bars. Youíre stopping new crimes from happening. You are bringing some tiny bit of peace to family members. I think that she likes being that person. I think she recognized that when she was away from it.

L. Martin: I know that you said earlier that youíre only a few episodes ahead of yourself in terms of the production. But, are there teasers that you can give us about any of the cases that are coming up?

E. Deschanel: Sure. We have an episode about daredevil BMX bikers. We have an episode about people who are polygamists Ė one polygamist who has many wives. So, you have an episode like that which seems to be very popular right now with different reality shows, the Big Love show, and all of that. Thatís interesting.

What did we just shoot? Sometimes I have no memory for a while, just before. We have one with the gravedigger, which is action packed. Thereís a sniper loose in DC. David directs an episode about that, which is great, great fun, action packed episode. Just love that episode. Thatís a really exciting one. Then, we have the BMX biker daredevil episode, which Iím just starting reading right now. Then thereís the one weíre doing now about Ö. Those are some ideas of a few ahead. Weíre just like a few ahead.

Moderator: Weíll go to the line of Lance Carter with Daily Actor.

L. Carter: Now, playing this character for as long as you have, does anything about her still surprise you?

E. Deschanel: Yes, yes. I think I was surprised as she started to open up more. What I just love, this was a couple of seasons ago, but there was a scene where she asked Sweets to help her learn facial expressions because sheís kind almost on the autistic spectrum, almost Aspbergeryónot quite, but has some characteristics that fit into that. She doesnít really understand how to read peoplesí emotions. I just love that she recognized that she didnít know how to do this and she wanted to get better at it. I just love that.

I loved the Jersey Shore episode. That surprised me just how much Brennan had studied this culture of the guidos and how seriously she took it. In a way, things surprise me and in a way, things donít. Because of course, she studied these guidos. Of course, she takes it very seriously as an anthropological study. Sheís going to throw a guy the crab, doing a body building pose to scare someone away. Itís a lot of fun.

Yes and no I guess is my answer. I love so many of her qualities, especially when sheís trying to grow as a person and open up.

L. Carter: Whatís your advice to actors, somebody just trying to get a start in the business?

E. Deschanel: Study acting. Do theater. Play as different kind of characters as you possibly can. Stretch yourself as far as you can. Make it about the acting. So many people get caught up in the looks and the agents and the business of it all and who you know and all of that. I guess thatís valid, but if you concentrate on the acting, I canít say that everything will fall into place, because I know so many incredibly talented actors who are struggling. I heard somebody say once itís 90% perseverance and like 5% talent. I think thatís so true, but I think if you are perseverant and if youó Concentrate on the acting, thatís all Iíll say. Concentrate on the acting.

Moderator: Our last question will come from the line of Fred Topel with Screen Junkies.

F. Topel: After this emotional episode, how nice was it to go back to more case of the week? Was it a relief?

E. Deschanel: Absolutely, absolutely. It took a lot out of me. It was an exhausting episode, physically, outside in the rain at night, all of that stuff. Iím not saying poor me in any way, but Iím just saying it was a relief to come back to doing these episodes about Ö, things like that. Definitely a relief, definitely a relief.

I didnít mention this. We have an episode coming up, which I was supposed to direct. It was reported that I was supposed to direct an episode about a wedding planner, which Iím excited to read. But, Iím not directing that episode after all because it turned out theyíd have to write me out of the episode before it so much and the episode that I was directing so much that Iíd be so light in the episode that it turned out that weíre now after Idol and we didnít know that. Itís just a wonderful opportunity to be after American Idol.

To do that episode, they were worried if we had two episodes very soon early on after Idol in which Iím just not very present in the show that it might take away. I donít know if thatís true, but they were. Maybe the audience would rather me not be in the show that much, but Hart was concerned about it. So, we are talking about moving me to the end of the season. Sorry, that was one thing I just wanted to clear up, because it was reported that I am directing this episode and I am not directing that episode.

But, yes, itís nice to do a moreófluffy may not be exactly the right word for it, but itís on the fluffier side of things, doing an episode about a wedding planner, things like that.

F. Topel: It was interesting to hear you talk about the work you do that you donít want to take home. What sort of extra work did you have to do on this episode?

E. Deschanel: You just spend more time working on it. I work with my acting teacher on it, but thereís just a lot of work you do on your own. I hate talking about the acting process, but itís a lot of creating thoughts and memories and all of that. So, thereís a lot of work to do. When itís such a heavy episode, youíre facing such serious emotions as a character. Itís just more demanding. It takes longer to do. Youíre just working harder on that. Itís stuff I love. I love doing that. I like the challenge. I donít think I could do it every single episode. I donít know, maybe Iíd get used to it, but it demands lot.

F. Topel: Does directing demand even more from you then?

E. Deschanel: Oh, yes, absolutely. When we postponed the directing, so much has happened in my life recently. Thereís a lot going on, so in a way I was disappointed that we had to move the directing episode but I was also relieved. Because I am going to be able to take some time in the Christmas break to (a) Iíll have more time to spend doing things I want to do, spending more time with family and stuff, not having to work as much because Iíd be preparing while I was on Christmas break if I was directing the next episode.

So, since Iím not doing that, I can spend time preparing, but in advance whatever I can do about directing, figuring out, anticipating things that Iíll want and need for the episode. Yes, absolutely. I probably wonít know entirely what it will demand of me physically and mentally and everything, until I get to the point where I am actually directing. I think itís one of those kinds of jobs that you just canít completely prepare for until youíre in it, and certainly, until you actually get the script for the actual episode. Iím sure itís going to demand a lot of me. Iím excited for that challenge, but Iím also happy to push it a little longer because thereís a lot going on right now.

K. Kurland: All right, Lori, I think we have to wrap it up there.

E. Deschanel: Well, thank you guys so much for taking the time to talk with me today. I hope I answered questions well for you. Have a great weekend.

Moderator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude our conference for today. Thank you for your participation. You may now disconnect.

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