Interview with Max Thieriot, Kenny Johnson & Ryan Hurst from "Bates Motel" on A&E - Primetime TV Show Articles From The TV MegaSite

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By Krista

Interview with Max Thieriot, Kenny Johnson & Ryan Hurst of "Bates Motel" on A&E 4/9/15


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. Go ahead.

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 this point.

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 it's been.

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 know.

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 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 favored brother.

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 know.

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 together.

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 it.


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 really say.

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.

Man: Excellent.

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 know.

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 a similarity.

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 open.

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 member.

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 going.

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 with him.

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 or thriller.

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 with somebody.

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 and downs.

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 Norma.

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.

Man: Thanks.

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 shady past.

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 question? Sorry.

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.

Man: Awesome.

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 expect next?

Kenny Johnson: You can explain episode six and then she'll know. Max?

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 her picture.

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 boar jerky.

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 Your line is open. Please proceed with your question.

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 everybody?

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 know.

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 Your line is open. Please proceed with your question.

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 guy?

Man: Or at least we think you do.

Courtney: Wonderful, thanks guys.

Operator: Mr. Kim, I'll now turn the presentation back over to you.

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 line.


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