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Conference Call interview with John
I was happy to attend a conference call with the actor John Francis
Daley, who plays Sweets on the FOX show ďBonesĒ. I loved him in ďFreaks
and GeeksĒ, too. I didnít ask any questions, but here is the transcript
of the call for your convenience. Daley talks about his character and
how we will learn more about his family background. He also talks about
his outside projects, some of his personal life, and answers questions
about the showís jokes about how young he looks.
FBC PUBLICITY: Bones Conference
February 3, 2009/1:00 pm. PST
John Francis Daley
Moderator Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for
standing by and welcome to the Bones Interview call with John Francis
Daley. Iíd also like to remind you that todayís conference is being
recorded. Iíll now turn the conference over to Kim Kurland for opening
K. Kurland Hello. I just wanted to thank everybody
for participating. We appreciate all your support of Bones. As
all of you know John plays Dr. Lance Sweets on the show and if anybody
has any follow-up questions feel free to send an e-mail to me at kim.Kurland@fox.com ...I
think we can get started.
Moderator Thank you and our first question is from
Michael Elkin with The Jewish Exponent, go ahead please.
M. Elkin Hello, John, how are you?
J. Daley Pretty good, how are you?
M. Elkin Iím fine thanks. Iím just wondering if
your current role is basically Sam all grown up.
J. Daley One might argue that. I think Lance is
definitely more book smart than Sam was and I donít know if Sam would
have gotten into psychology, probably the same thing that Paul Feig got
into since the character is 99% based on him. But definitely some
similarities in the geekiness and general likeability and handsomeness
in both characters.
M. Elkin Just a follow-up. I enjoy the show very
much and I liked Freaks and Geeks, too, but Iím just wondering if
Sam would have made a really challenging patient for Dr. Sweets.
J. Daley Yes, I think it would have been many
sessions to get past this yearís bullies.
M. Elkin Thank you very much.
Moderator Next we have Daniel Feinberg with
Hello, John, thanks for doing this call. So in the episodes that aired
a couple weeks back we learned a little bit about Sweetsí sort of family
background including that he apparently comes from carnie folk. When
they gave you that information did you ask what use you were supposed to
make of it as an actor?
J. Daley I had to take a step back and sort of
rethink my whole character. No, honestly Iíve no idea what theyíre
intending to do with my character in terms of that, but Iím very
interested to see because not many times you can say that you have a
character that comes from a family of carnies.
D. Feinberg What other information do you have about
Sweetsí background that sort of is going to be disseminated in the
episodes to come?
J. Daley I know that we do sort of learn a little
more about his growing up in foster care and of whatever happened to him
before he was adopted. I canít really go into specifics because itís
ultimately speculative on my part as well. But from what I can gather
from the upcoming episode I think we are going to sort of learn where he
came from and what secrets heís hidden along the way.
D. Feinberg Excellent, thanks a lot.
Moderator Next we have Lynn Devries with b5media.
L. Devries Thanks for doing this. Readers would like
to know more about what youíre working on outside of the show, for
example whatís happening with your band and the screenplay youíve been
J. Daley The band Iím with is, weíre starting up
again this year. Everyone was out of town in various countries
traveling the world and learning whatever they need to learn to become
better musicians. I was just working on Bones. And in terms of
the writing, theyíre going to actors and directors right now with our
magician movie, Bert Dickinson. Weíre doing a rewrite on The
$40,000 Man and in development with the Hours of Fun movie
that my writing partner Jonathan Goldstein and I are working on for
Disney and Scott Rudin. So theyíre all in just various stages of
development or pre-production as it were. So fingers crossed that one
of them will become an actual movie.
L. Devries Right and weíll keep watching for that.
Also since your fatherís a veteran of Broadway, has that influenced your
career in any way?
J. Daley I feel like it absolutely has. When I
was young and living in New York, over the weekends I would go with my
dad to where he worked, whatever show it would be. Iíd be backstage
basically doing my homework in that amount of time and so I was
surrounded by it at a very young age and it was something that I had
immediately become fascinated with and wanted to learn more about until
that fateful day when I was nine years old and asked my parents for an
agent. Thatís sort of where it all started.
L. Devries Weíre glad it did. Thank you very much.
Moderator Next we have Rick Bentley with The
R. Bentley Thanks a lot for the time today, John. I
want to ask one of the sort of running jokes of the show has been your
incredibly young good looks. Can you talk about it? Is that something
you just roll with, because you are young, obviously, but do you just
roll with that or are there roles that youíve missed out because people
just said you look twelve?
J. Daley Iím still not getting any roles for
anyoneís grandfather or father, for that matter unless I have some weird
Benjamin Button condition. But, no, so far the roles that Iíve been
going out for are basically my age or a little younger. I definitely
still have the youthful look, which many actors are thankful for and I
am as well. Iím glad Iím not looking like, Iím not even going to name
R. Bentley Thanks.
Moderator We have a question from Alice Newgen with
The Times Courier.
A. Newgen Hello, John, how are you doing? I was
wondering is thereís anything new coming up in Dr. Lance Sweetís
character that you could tell us about in the next two episodes?
J. Daley Absolutely. My character helps the team
find out who the Gravedigger is in this next episode where Booth gets
captured. And I sort of profile, when they do find out who it is, I
profile that person and help them to find information that will set
Booth free. And I also have a fun little session with Dr. Brennan where
she basically asks me to teach her how to interrogate people in the
So I help her detect the subtleties of human emotions and expressions
and teach her the simplest things that most people already know, but
because Dr. Brennan thinks in a sort of different way, itís all new to
her. I teach her when someone is being angry or sad or submissive and
A. Newgen It does sound great, thanks.
Moderator Thank you and next weíll go to David
Martindale with the Hearst newspapers.
D. Martindale Hello, John. Love the show and youíre
really quite good in it. Is there a lot of Sweets in you and a lot of
John in Sweets or is it almost like when you play the role youíre
putting on a Sweets costume?
J. Daley In some ways I am. I feel like Sweets
is one of those characters where heís very intelligent and has managed
to work his way up the career ladder at an incredibly rapid pace, but at
the same time heís still 22 or 23 years old so we see traces of his
youthfulness in the psychological mumbo jumbo that heís usually
spouting. So I would say that in those glimpses of his youth that is
where I sort of come out as just myself.
Otherwise I think that he is
definitely trying to restrain that side of him and try to stay the most
professional, respected person as he can be because itís the only way he
can get his colleagues to listen to him seriously.
D. Martindale Is it true that a lot of the little remarks
that Booth hurls at Sweets in therapy is stuff that just comes out of
Davidís brain on the spot?
J. Daley Oh, yes. But I would say that for most
of the scenes that Davidís in. He definitely has a knack for that,
rattling off new and interesting things.
D. Martindale Not just your lines, but everybodyís lines.
J. Daley I would say so, yes, absolutely. It
always makes doing scenes with David really fun because I think people
are encouraged to not ad lib so much as give their own sort of flavor to
the character and sometimes that involves ad libbing, doing things you
wouldnít normally expect from the character.
D. Martindale Thank you very much.
Moderator Next is Troy Rogers with thedeadbolt.com.
T. Rogers Hello, John, thanks for taking the time.
J. Daley Thanks for having me.
T. Rogers I was wondering can you give me Sweetsí
psychological assessment of the Gravedigger?
J. Daley I donít want to give too much away, but
I know the Gravedigger is a very tough nut to crack.
T. Rogers Thereís a good comedic vibe between
Sweets, Booth and Brennan. In addition to that, what do you like about
J. Daley About Sweetsí character?
T. Rogers Yes.
J. Daley Aside from that vibe where heís
constantly trying to get through to these people that donít seem to take
him very seriously, he is someone that is very, very stubborn and
determined to be proven right even if heís wrong. And that makes it
funny because you see that this character is really willing to do
anything to get respect and usually when someone is willing to do
anything for respect they lose all respect to begin with.
T. Rogers So if youíre willing to do anything for
respect, can we expect to see some upcoming episodes where he gets his
eyebrows singed off?
J. Daley A la Kitchen Confidential? You
never know. With this show you never knowÖ
T. Rogers Thanks, John.
Moderator Then weíll go to Sara Jersild with
S. Jersild Hello and thanks so much for doing
this. One of the things that I wonder about is it a matter of Sweets
sort of trying to get that respect that heís pushing Boothís buttons so
hard over the last couple of episodes?
J. Daley He also sees something in Booth that
hasnít yet been revealed at least to him and he is waiting for Booth to
basically let it all out. And if that means Sweets getting punched by
Booth so be it, but I think that itís definitely something that he will
not give up on. Heís going to constantly push and push to get what he
wants out of Booth.
S. Jersild Thank you.
Moderator Next is Rick Porter with zap2it.com.
R. Porter Hello, John, how are you?
J. Daley Iím great, thanks.
R. Porter Wanted to ask you about how your role
sort of grew to become one of the regular ones on the show and what that
process was like for you?
J. Daley I started as a guest star on the show.
The first episode that I read was the one where we first see me in my
office talking to Booth and Brennan and basically learning about their
chemistry for the first time. And it was a very interesting episode for
me because Iíve never played anyone with such a demanding profession
before. Iíve played a chef and a leader, but never someone that works
for something as elite as the FBI.
So it was interesting to have that combination of high stakes with his
still coming into maturity and have to deal with all that as a 22
year-old. Thatís something I was immediately attracted to and I heard
that there was interest in having me come on as a regular. When I heard
about that I was very pleased because Iíd immediately gotten very
attached to the cast and the crew, such an amazing group of people to
work with and very rarely can you say that completely honestly these
days. But everyone is just a delight.
So when I did find out that I was going to be a regular I was happy to
know that I would be continuing to work with these people that are just
so great to work with.
R. Porter What do you think itís going to take for
Sweets to gain Booth and Brennanís full respect or do you think that can
J. Daley I think itís always possible. I think
they do even respect him, but they have never told him to his face and I
donít know if they ever will. But it would have to take something like
him taking a bullet for them probably to gain their full respect up
R. Porter Thanks, John.
Moderator Weíll go to Curt Wagner with Redeye.
C. Wagner Hello, John. Iím calling from Chicago. I
read that you were born in suburban Chicago.
J. Daley Yes, Wheeling, Illinois.
C. Wagner How long did you live here?
J. Daley I lived in Chicago for only two years
before my dad joined the national tour of Cats. That got me
traveling all across this nation of ours until finally ending in New
York. But I still have family out there. My momís side of the family
is still out there so I visit every year. Itís very dear to my heart.
C. Wagner I was wondering if youíre ever going to get
to use your
Kung Fu skills on the show?
J. Daley Iíd love to before they completely
leave. Itís been a while since Iíve practiced, but itís something that
I think, itís like riding a bike, you can get back into it. I can be a
deadly killing machine yet again.
C. Wagner If you every get out into the action.
J. Daley You never know. Weíve had glimpses of
him sort of joining in these adventures in later episodes so Iíd say
itís a great possibility. It would be a lot of fun for me.
C. Wagner. Then I was wondering if Sweets and Brennan
are ever going to sort of connect because of the foster care thing.
J. Daley Thatís what it seems like might happen
because they do share that and I donít think weíve seen necessarily a
major connection between the two of them on an emotional level in terms
of their past experiences. So that definitely seems like something that
the writers will explore in later episodes.
C. Wagner Thanks, great job on the show.
Moderator We have a follow-up from Troy Rogers with
T. Rogers Hello, John, itís me again. I just have
one more quick thing. Since you started playing this role do you find
yourself analyzing friends and family?
J. Daley Probably no more than I already did.
Yes, you definitely start to hear yourself repeating phrases that you
use on the show and I know that canít be very fun for my friends. But
the more annoyed by me as a person they are, the more it will help my
character. So itís all for the work.
T. Rogers I just want to thank you again.
Moderator We have a follow-up from D. Martindale with
D. Martindale Hello again. An actor once told me that one
of the things he looks for in a character is a great name and that once
he has a great name heís already halfway home in figuring out what his
character is about. Do you feel that way with a character named Sweets?
J. Daley It is about the goofiest name, character
name, that Iíve ever had or the goofiest until I do some cartoon. Yes,
it definitely puts an image of a person in your mind I would say. When
you say the name out loud and I think that my character has probably his
entire life tried to display the exact opposite of that image that you
think of when you think of that name. Itís probably something that
heís been teased about all his life and hey, maybe the name is what got
him into psychology to begin with.
D. Martindale From just a name you can conjure up all
sorts of character traits.
J. Daley Thatís right.
D. Martindale Thanks so much.
Moderator Our next follow-up is from Lynn Devries
L. Devries Thanks again. Readers are very curious
about whether Sweets will ever try to get Zack out of the mental
hospital now that Zack has admitted he didnít actually kill anyone. Do
you know if thereís anything like that in the works?
J. Daley I honestly have no idea. I havenít been
told about what will happen with Zack, but that would be very
interesting if he did and I know that Sweets probably has some grief in
terms of keeping that incredibly heavy secret to himself that Zack in
fact didnít kill anyone.
L. Devries Thank you again.
K. Kurland I think we have time for one more
Moderator Thank you. That will come from Michael
Elkin with The Jewish Exponent.
M. Elkin Hello again, John, how are you. Just
wondering if Dr. Sweets is able to relax by playing the piano like actor
who portrays him?
J. Daley You never know. I donít know yet if
that will come to be, but I know that Hart, the creator, does know that
I play and knowing how he uses peoplesí actual abilities outside of the
show in the show it would not be something that would be unlikely.
M. Elkin Do you think that would be a special
pleasure, a special delight for your mom?
J. Daley Absolutely. It would be like the
biggest recital in the world.
M. Elkin Thank you very much.
Moderator Thank you. Do you have any closing
J. Daley Thanks for having great questions and I
love each and every one of you.
Moderator Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. That does
conclude our conference for today. Thank you for your participation for
using AT&T Executive Teleconference. You may now disconnect.
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