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Interview with Max Thieriot, Kenny
Johnson & Ryan Hurst of "Bates Motel" on
BATES MOTEL CONFERENCE CALL
Moderator: Yong Kim
April 09, 2015 3:23 pm CT
Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by.
Welcome to the Universal Television Bates Motel
teleconference call. During the presentation all
participants will be in a listen only mode. Afterwards we'll
conduct a question and answer session.
At that time if you have a question please press the 1
followed by the 4 on your telephone. If at any time during
the conference you need to reach an operator please the star
and 0. As a reminder this conference is being recorded
Thursday, April 9, 2015.
I will now turn the conference over to Yong Kim, press
manager for Bates Motel. Please proceed.
Yong Kim: All right. Thank you so much. Hi everyone. Welcome
to the Bates Motel Conference Call today. We're currently
joined by Max, Kenny and Ryan on this line and as you know
Bates Motel airs Mondays at 9 o'clock on A&E.
And this call as mentioned will be recorded and if you need
a transcript after the call just let me and I'll send is to
you as soon as it's available. So at this time I'll turn the
conference over to the guys and operator for questions.
And just as a reminder due to limited time please keep
questions focused on the show. Thank you.
Operator: Okay, thank you ladies and gentlemen. If you'd
like to register a question please press the 1 followed by
the 4 on your telephone. You'll hear a three toned prompt to
acknowledge your request.
If your question has been answered and you would like to
withdraw your registration please press 1 followed by the 3.
If using a speaker phone please lift your handset before
entering your request. Our first question today comes from
the line of (unintelligible).
Man: Doing Bates Motel right now. Yes. Yes.
Man: Hi guys. Thanks for doing this call. This is quite a
lineup of Bates Motel characters so I wanted to ask each of
you to weigh in one who...
Man: I'm actually doing an interview for Bates Motel right
now. No. No. Okay. Go ahead Buddy. Sorry. Go ahead. Sorry.
Man: That's okay. Who do you think are the most suspicious
characters. You can weigh in on that Chick, Caleb and maybe
even Dylan. And even Bob Paris and other characters we're
not speaking to today?
Man: I definitely personally think that Chick is for me the
most suspicious character right now. I mean we kind of know,
you know, that Bob Parish is sort of this greasy, scummy
dude. And, you know, but Chick is like such an unknown at
And, you know, one minute like he's kind of friendly and
nice and another minute he's creeping around the house. So
for me he's kind of like the most mysterious and maybe most
suspicious guy. I don't know.
Man: No. Yes, I would totally agree. I would agree too.
Man: You know, who is this guy. Where is he coming from. How
does he know so many little things that he kind of drops on
you, you know, about the town, about who got busted, about,
you know, his guy being in Puerto Rico.
It's like one second, like he says, he's like a neighborly
kind of cool guy, but then he's got these weird trippy
things that he's building a million guns and now he's trying
to make some sort of deal, you know, with Caleb out of the
blue. So he's, you know, talking about crazy things.
So he's, per me, the same thing. I mean he's pretty
suspicious. Pretty suspicious and mysterious. I mean I kind
of get the same thing. It's funny. I get a lot of what's
going on with Norma and Caleb at the same time.
You know, they go in from being, you know, like really good
people and, you know, Norma being very motherly and Caleb
being just like a good guy, to you see this kind of twist
and turn in these guys too, which, you know, again it makes
them a little off. You know.
Man: Well, Ryan, do you want to weigh in that, the way
you're playing, if you want us to be suspicious of Chick.
Ryan: No, what I love about this show is that, you know,
you're suspicious of everybody. You know, it's like you're
turning in and it's always like trust no one. You know.
But, you know, that's it's that they kind of, you know, is
that they create Pecos and then suspicion of, you know,
around all of the characters (unintelligible) for everybody.
Man: Well great. Thank you all for speaking today.
Man: Thank you.
Man: Of course.
Man: I think we should all pretend to be somebody else. Like
I'll answer all of Max questions.
Man: No, I want to be Max. I want to be Max.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Jamie
Ruby from Sci-Fi Vision. Your line is open. Please proceed
with your question.
Jamie Ruby: Hi. Hi guys. Thanks for taking the call today.
Man: Of course.
Jamie Ruby: So this is kind of expanding on what you're just
talking about but we don't know a whole bunch what is Chick
is up to but is he going to be - is he going to start
pulling them back into trouble again after they finally seem
to be getting away and if they try not to is he willing to
take no for an answer?
Man: I mean I can't speak too much to that without giving,
you know, some stuff away but, you know, I think, you know,
but I think the character serves a lot of different purposes
in terms of the narrative and also in terms of, you know,
Jim bringing out different part of Dylan and Caleb.
So it's like, you know, I think, you know, you're never
going to really get a real firm footing with regards to, you
know, what Chick's real motive is. So.
Jamie Ruby: Okay. And then can the three of you kind of talk
about just your scenes with all three of your together, how
Man: For me, they're, I don't know, they're a lot of fun. I
mean, the dynamic between these three guys is so different
and bizarre and for some reason, like when I know for Dylan
when he's around Chick he kind of like, can't help himself.
But be honest with him and like tell him all the stuff that
he shouldn't be telling him. And then he's kind of really
the only guy that Dylan does that around sort of like shows
I guess this weakness. But I don't know.
I think we also just have a lot of fun, you know, we all
kind of get along and, you know, get to have a good time on
set too, so it makes it that much more enjoyable.
Man: Yes, and it makes it, I mean I feel like we end up
trusting each other a lot. So which ever direction any of us
go the others kind of follow, you know, and yes. I feel -
it's a blast. I mean it's really, really intense.
And it gets really heightened but at the same time, you
know, we just really kind of dig on each other so it becomes
a lot of fun.
Man: Yes, I think that's the operative word. There was a lot
of, just like between the three of us there was like just a
real trust, you know, nature of like, you know, let's let
this be awkward, let it be tense, let it be ambiguous, you
And just sort of like, all sort of like, you know, let it
stew in that strange space and, you know, I'm happy that
it's coming off on the screen.
Man: Yes. Yes.
Jamie Ruby: Well, I'm enjoying it very much. Thank you.
Man: You're welcome.
Man: Thank you. Right on.
Man: Thank you.
Operator: Our next question today comes from the line of
(Heather) (unintelligible) from TVGoodness.com. Your line is
open. Please proceed with your question.
Heather: Hey guys. Thank you so much for talking to us
today. I have a - my first question is for Max. So Dylan has
kind of run the gamut since this character was introduced
and now for lack of a better way to say it, he's the more
And you talk a little bit about Dylan's art since he arrived
and kind of where he is now?
Max Thieriot: Yes. It's funny, you know, because when first
got the script, I think I was sent like three and in all of
them Dylan kind of shows up and he's - I mean he's really
prick. Like he shows up and he's really rude to his mom,
which doesn't really jive very well with me.
And like I kind of just didn't get it from the beginning and
my initial thought was wow, everybody's going to hate this
guys. Like I show up, I'm a total dick to everybody. Like
what, you know, what's redeeming about this guy.
But, you know, Carlton and Carrie really kind of know what
they're doing and had an obviously a bigger picture and plan
and he just kind of said look, like, you know, it's all
going to change and he's really going to kind of evolve.
And so I sort of, you know, took the jump there and it's
been cool because all of a sudden, you know, we've seen him
change and become like the leader of the drug cartel in town
and, you know, we've seen him change and bond with this mom
and his brother.
And, you know, ultimately like, in a way, I don't know,
Dylan is kind of like this sort of sign of hope in the show,
I mean. We also don't know his fate and so, you know, we
know what's going to happen to Norma. We know what's going
to happen to Norm.
And so he kind of gives, I guess a little sense of hope.
That like something good can come out of all this. I don't
Heather: Cool. Thank you. And for Kenny, I have to say the
scenes that you all have with each other, they make me sort
of worry desperately about Dylan and Caleb's sanity and
safety at all times. You guys are so good when you are place
So I have to ask for Kenny, how is it for to walk this fine
this fine line as Caleb has become much more sympathetic
while also admitting to some horrible behavior. Can you talk
a little bit about playing that role?
Kenny Johnson: Yes. I mean for me, I mean I don't want to
say about Max is when I first started watching the show, was
a huge fan of it and one of my favorite characters was Max's
character because I didn't know anything about him.
He was that mystic to the whole thing and I think it's
pretty amazing, you know, where his character has come and
how like you say, he's bonded now with Norman and Norma
more. He just seems like - he's like this opened vessel,
right. You feel so much through.
And I think he's doing an amazing job. You know, for me with
Caleb, I just, you know, I mean I just wanted to humanize
him. And, you know, and I thought don't look at him as what
everybody keeps saying he is.
Look at him as a human being who obviously has made this
pretty horrific mistake back in the day, you know, and not
really having to explain the circumstances around it or what
lead up to it or defending himself.
He's just trying to, you know, I'm not going to say redeem
himself but do some good while he's still here. And he's
obviously got a conscious that made him come back to this
place and found out he had a son.
And now he's trying to find some sort of something. I think
he's still searching himself for some kind of forgiveness
and, you know, it doesn't mean that he has to be forgiven
but, you know, he's a human being so I just try to humanize
it for myself as much as I can without, you know, judging
Heather: Great. Thank you.
Kenny Johnson: Oh yes, and I just got to say, Max is an
unbelievable actor to play opposite of because he's
nonjudgmental and open that it allows me to have a lot more
kind of pull out of me. I mean, you know, so.
Heather: Well they're so rich, your scenes with each
other so it's been one of my favorite part of this season so
thank you very much.
Kenny Johnson: Right on. Yes, thank you.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Amanda
Remling from International Business Times. Your line is
open. Please proceed with your question.
Amanda Remling: Hi guys. So my question is directed towards
- well, actually anybody can answer this but last week, you
know, Norma scene of running out of the house. It was pretty
crazy and Dylan had to hold Norman back.
So I was wondering Kenny actually do you think Caleb would
have encouraged Dylan to talk to Norma if he knew the
outcome of that whole situation?
Kenny Johnson: If he knew the outcome of the whole
situation? You know, I mean I have no idea how Norma's going
to react to anything so I don't know what would be right or
wrong in that situation but yes, I don't know.
That's a tricky question. I mean, how do you get to her to
say that, yet he confronts her honestly right at the table
with Norman sitting there. So it was pretty amazing the way
they wrote it, you know, I don't really have an answer for,
you know, if I had them do that or not. I don't know.
Amanda Remling: Okay. All right, and Max, do you think that
your relationship, you know, with Norm now, Dylan's
relationship with Norman do you think that's - well right
now like obviously Norman didn't want to be held back and he
was very emotional about it so do you think they're like
completely on the outs now?
Max Thieriot: You know, I think honestly episode 6 kind of
really answers that entire question. It sort of explains now
like, you know, what's going to happen, what they're
relationship, too. I don't know. That's hard for me to
Amanda Remling: I'm sorry. All right. Well thank you so
much. I really appreciate it.
Max Thieriot: It definitely. It definitely changes their
relationship for sure.
Amanda Remling: All right. Cool. Looking forward to watching
them both. Thank you so much.
Man: Thank you.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Krista Chain from The TV MegaSite, your line is open. Please
proceed with your question.
Krista Chain: Yes, my question is for Max. I was just
wondering, do you think that Emma and Dylan can be together
in the show?
Max Thieriot: Do I think that Emma and Dylan can be together
on the show? I don't know. You know, I think anything's
possible. But I think that's, you know, for me that's has
kind of always been an interesting idea and, you know, I
don't know, I always kind of thought that it'd be
interesting if they explored that.
You know, because they're both kind of like in a way the
outsiders of - on the outside of this relationship between
Norma and Norman and they're always kind of kept a little
bit on the outside, you know, and so I thought that be - I
thought it'd be interesting if they could be so. I don't
You never know. I think it'd be fun to watch.
Krista Chain: And also is there something in Dylan that
you identify with or find in yourself?
Max Thieriot: I don't know. I mean, I guess definitely -
there's definitely some stuff. I think, you know, for me
family is such an important thing. You know, maybe the most
important thing in my life.
And I think, you know, obviously no matter what Dylan goes
through and how he's treated and everything he always sort
of comes back to his family and wants family. I guess that's
Krista Chain: Okay. Great. Good luck.
Max Thieriot: Thank you.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of
(Stephanie Peshay) from Red Carpet Report. Your line is
Stephanie Peshay: Thank you. Hi guys. Very excited to see
Ryan this season on. Loving your character. Can you guys
tell me what you like about your characters development
because, well Ryan, you're still pretty new as far as a cast
But both Max and Kenny have had some time and their
characters have changed. What do you like most about where
your character is going. Or not like where your character is
Kenny Johnson: Well I mean I definitely - I mean I like that
Caleb's come back and he's kind of searching for, you know,
some sort of sense of family and self and maybe getting to -
obviously getting to his son, who didn't want anything to do
Wanted to get to know his sister last season who didn't want
anything to do with him. So I like the fact that there's
slowly, like a slow burn of real time of earning trust, you
know, between the characters a little bit. You know, and
they keep testing it and putting it out there.
So there's something about that, that's really interesting
and intriguing because you don't know which way Dylan's
character is going to react. You know, and basically they
keep kind of writing to put Caleb's heart on the line.
Like the speech - it's just not be like - yes, to just be
sincere and honest and humble and just go from there and
it's been pretty wild. And then, you know, Ryan's character
thrown in the mix of it is obviously a bit of a threat, a
bit of a, you know, a whole past history that comes up.
And this karma is just really unsettling but it's fun to
play with and explore with Ryan. So I really dig what they
're - we're doing with Ryan's character to Dylan and myself.
Stephanie Peshay: Awesome. Next.
Ryan Hurst: I mean the thing that I always like is just is -
I'm always a fan of characters whether they're large of
small and, you know, that bringing in emotion that's a
little difficult to capture and, you know, ambiguity I think
is the name of the game when you're talking about a mystery
And to kind of being in that space of knowing, you know, of
the interaction between the characters and also with the
audience they don't emotionally quite know where to stand
Whether to trust them, whether to be afraid, whether to not
be afraid, I think that's always place to hang out and them
so that's what I like most about Chick. And that he gets to
wear cut off shorts and wool socks, so.
Stephanie Peshay: Definitely funky.
Ryan Hurst: Yes.
Max Thieriot: No Chick, is a really cool character and
really interesting. And speaking of having Ryan on. I think
we were all really excited, Kenny and I and everybody else
when we heard that Ryan was going to be on the show. And as
far as Dylan how he's gone.
I don't know. I think, you know, sort of transformation that
he's made throughout the season has been all really
interesting and fun for me and, you know, one of the things
about Dylan is he's like constantly has this battle of ups
I mean like, he shows up and everything's pretty bad and
then, you know, he financially he starts to improve his
situation and he starts to build his relationship with
Norman, and it's like every time, you know, that it seems
like that they're getting closer something happens that kind
of breaks it apart. And then all of a sudden you introduce
his dad into the equation and it's kind of brought this
whole other element, you know.
Where before he obviously like had love for his mom and
always wanted her love. But now, you know, now that Caleb's
in the picture he's just like - it's fascinating and the way
Kenny plays it is so amazing because he's.
So like sensitive and kind and caring and even though, you
know, Dylan has - Dylan knows what he knows about his dad to
a certain extent, he has so many qualities about him that
are so like magnetic to Dylan.
I don't know. It's been fun. It's been a lot of fun to see,
you know, all of the changes and just kind of keep riding
the wave, you know.
Stephanie Peshay: Well it's really developing great and
hope to have you guys left to several more seasons as it
were. So thanks. Enjoying you. Okay.
Man: All right.
Man: Right on.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Nat
Brehmer from Wicket Horror. Your line is open. Please
proceed with your question.
Nat Brehmer: Hello. My question is for Max. How much of
everything that Dylan has been told about his father, that
he knows about his father - how much of all that about Caleb
do you think he actually believes at this point?
Max Thieriot: Well, that's hard. You know, I think in the
beginning obviously he didn't believe all that much of it
because Norma kind of definitely has a way of being very
dramatic and sort of making up a lot of stuff.
But you know, obviously when they have the conversation when
they sit down at the table out at the farm. I mean he asks
him straight up, and Caleb is honest and, you know, I think
that even though, you know, Caleb may have sort of like a
And a little bit of a - I guess a little bit of a dark side
to him. Dylan can - I think Dylan can kind of see Caleb's
heart and is able to see that like he's being truthful and
he's being honest and, you know, sincere with him and I
think he's just able to see, I guess, you know, he's able to
see all the good that's in him.
And I don't know. So I think - did that kind of answer your
Nat Brehmer: Yes. Yes. Thanks. Well the season is developing
fantastically so that's you all so much.
Man: Thank you.
Man: Right on.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of (Teresa)
(unintelligible) from TV Fanatic. Your line is open. Please
proceed with your question.
Teresa: Thank you. My question is essentially it seems
like - my brain just went completely blank as soon as you
said my name.
Teresa: Isn't that always the way.
Man: Okay. Good night.
Teresa: Yes. Thank you very much, good bye. I'm thinking
that Caleb kind of has the angel of Max on one shoulder and
the devil of Chick on the other. And depending upon kind of
what goes down with Norma, he's either going to kind of rise
above or sink into the abyss.
And now that Norma's kind of out and has learned what
happened with Caleb, what do you think is going to happen,
you know, with her being out there kind of, you know,
running in the streets and without her kids what his
reaction to that going to be and is that - what do you
Kenny Johnson: You can explain episode six and then she'll
Max Thieriot: What can we expect next?
Teresa: Yes. Is he going to take - depending upon what
Norma does essentially is he going to take the high road or
the low road? Because, you know, he sits there and looks at
And it seems like, you know, he's either going to go down -
he's going to go the family way or he's going to take
Chick's way with I think we kind of think isn't the high
road. No offense.
Max Thieriot: I guess. I don't know. It's interesting
because like I think Caleb constantly battles with this
obviously Norma and Norman not really approving of him being
around for the most part. But he wants so badly to - just to
have everything be okay.
And to be a part of this family and to be a part of Dylan's
life. It's - your question is like really something that's
totally going to be explored and stuff. So yes, you're going
to find all of that out.
Ryan Hurst: I'm just going to jump in there and the one
thing that I think is beautiful about, you know, these, you
know, about what these two guys are doing as actors and the
thing that the show creates is that the trajectory of both
of these characters is, you know, is not straight forward.
You know, it's not just like that they have this very
specific goal and it's whether they're going to get it or
not. Yes and they get, you know, and it's a real sort of
rich tapestry that they're sort of, you know, that they're
growing along with the series.
And like the fact that you're asking that question means
that they're doing their job really, really, really well.
Teresa: That's true, that's true. And just one other kind
of fun question. Have any of you ever had something like
Ryan Hurst: I've never had boar jerky.
Man: What was that? Wait what was it again?
Teresa: Thank you. It was really fun.
Man: Have we ever had boar jerky?
Teresa: Yes, something like boar jerky?
Kenny Johnson: Yes, we had - one of the guys on the set,
right around then came up with - Max, what was it? Elk?
Max Thieriot: It was Elk jerky and sausage.
Kenny Johnson: And sausage. It was amazing. There was a guy
who makes it by himself dude. It was phenomenal. I mean...
Teresa: Brilliant. Brilliant. Thank you guys.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Jeff
Owens from Howdy.com. Your line is open. Please proceed with
Jeff Owens: Hi. Thanks guys. I was talking about the show
with a friend and she said she has a horrible feeling that
something bad is going to Dylan. And if you think about it,
I mean Norm eventually ends up by himself, which means one
of the options is that he kills everyone he's close to.
So my question for you Max is if you were writing the show
how would you like to see your relationship or Dylan's
relationship evolve and ultimately resolve with Norman.
Max Thieriot: If I was writing the show at the end the
biggest - the big reveal would be that Dylan kills Norman
and wears his skin and then he actually becomes Norm. Boom.
Drop the mike. Everybody mind is blown.
Max Thieriot: I don't know. To answer your question,
honestly I don't know how I would write it because it's so -
I don't know. Yes. I mean Norman obviously eventually ends
up by himself. But how does he get there? Does he kill
Is, you know, does he - is everybody eventually, you know, a
piece of taxidermy or taxidermy art or whatever in the
house. Who knows. But I don't know. I think that they've
been so kind of creative up until this point that - I don't
I've heard some of the ideas for - four and five and stuff
and they're definitely really cool and exciting.
Jeff Owens: Great. Thanks a lot.
Max Thieriot: Thank you.
Operator: Okay. Due to time constraints we'll take one more
question from the line of (Courtney) (unintelligible) from
ohsorad.com. Your line is open. Please proceed with your
Courtney: Hi thanks for talking with us. My question is
what can you preview for us for the rest of the season?
What's something that people should look forward to?
Man: You guys?
Ryan Hurst: Yes, I don't know.
Max Thieriot: Ryan, what do you have for us?
Ryan Hurst: I'm leaving it up to you guys. You guys do all
the heavy lifting.
Max Thieriot: More of - I mean I think all the family
dynamics just get tested even more. I mean I think they
probably keep going, Carrie and Carlton have a great way of
just going in these directions and then pulling you back
into a completely opposite direction.
And it just the push pull type of thing is pretty amazing
for the characters and also, you know, the family dynamic. I
mean I'm always - I'm just fascinated and intrigued by the
family dynamic and they just push it about as far as I think
they could. Obviously because it's Bates Motel. You know.
Kenny Johnson: I think also like you can obviously expect
like a good cliff hanging finish, you know, that I think
everybody will be really excited to see and shocked by. And
for me what's kind of cool is like this season we sort of
really start to see Norman start, you know, to unravel.
And he's like - it seems like every episode he starts to
lose it just a little more and just a little more. So I
think, you know, by the end of the season three - he's
changed a lot since season one and I think it's cool because
I think, you know, something - obviously the audience is
wanting to see happen.
Max Thieriot: And he, you know, I mean Freddy does an
amazing job this year with his transformation I think he's,
you know, elevated it to a whole new place and like Max
says, between now and the end of the season it's just going
to take you to yet again a whole other place.
And also Ryan, you're going to find out a lot more about
Chick. You're going to find out a lot more. Man. Who is this
Man: Or at least we think you do.
Courtney: Wonderful, thanks guys.
Operator: Mr. Kim, I'll now turn the presentation back over
Yong Kim: Okay. Thank you. Thanks everyone for joining
today's call and thank you...
Yong Kim: Just a reminder. Bates Motel is on A&E at 10
o'clock. So thanks for your time and we'll talk to you.
Ryan Hurst: All right. Thanks guys.
Max Thieriot: Thank you.
Kenny Johnson: All right. Love you Max. Love you Ryan.
Ryan Hurst: Love you man.
Max Thieriot: Love you Ryan.
Operator: Ladies and gentlemen. That does conclude the
conference call for today. We thank you for your
participation and we ask that you please disconnect your
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