“I think I’ll take a break”
Confession interview with the hero of the series “Mentalist” wich Season 5 begins Tuesday on TF1
After his summer holidays, Simon Baker has taken the path of the Warner Brothers studios in Burbank, Los Angeles. Since late July, the Australian is shooting the first episodes of season 6 Mentalist – perhaps the ultimate… Meanwhile, from his home in Hollywood, the actor reveals the secrets of the fifth season, which starts on TF1, and discusses the future of the series.
Simon Baker, last year, we told you have spent holidays in France, incognito, in Lyon. Have you repeated the experiment this summer?
I just popped in in July at the Prix de Diane in Chantilly, with a detour to Paris, and then I went on vacation in Australia with my wife and our three children. I also went surfing in Indonesia, right the opposite, a paradise for fans of board sports, like me.
The Mentalist Season 5 is eagerly awaited, as we get closer to the revelation of the identity of Red John, the enemy N° 1 that Patrick Jane, your character, hunts for years …
We are not far from the goal, a list of seven names of the characters will be revealed and among them is really Red John. I myself was surprised by some of the mentioned names, frankly unexpected …
But do you know from the beginning who is Red John? Has Bruno Heller, the creator of the series, entrusted you?
No, and even better: I’ve never asked! And I do not know if my playmates know the answer – I have not asked either. In fact, I try to guess by myself who is Red John. Besides, I’m getting a pretty good idea. I will not tell you, I can just say that, if I am right, the fans will be both pleased and shocked by the revelation …
Will Americans viewers get the answer before the end of the year, during the season 6?
Won’t the revelation of Red John identity be the end of the series?
Hum … “Peut-être” (he said it in French), but it’s not sure. Obviously, this chapter, or rather the Red John saga will indeed close. And if there’s a sequel, a season Seven, the investigations are likely to be different. Patrick Jane could remain with the CBI and keep his consulting work, who knows? Everything will depend on how the American public will react to this season 6: it will be based on the audience figures. The future of the series has more to do with it than with the resolution of the Red John plot.
Some fans think that Red John has psychic powers. What is your opinion?
I do not think he has such gifts.
What about the announced departure, but not confirmed, of actors Amanda Righetti (Agent Van Pelt) and Owain Yeoman (Agent Rigsby)?
It’s difficult for me to comment, I don’t know about it and I do not even know if it’s true. You know, in any case, some actors are dependent on the script and do not really have a choice to stay or not. Then there are those who go away due to weariness.
In the Episode 100 of season 5, we will pull the clock eight years back: we will discover a Patrick Jane we’ve never seen, right after the murder committed by Red John of his wife and daughter…
The fans should not miss this episode, which I especially love. It was very fun to play because it has changed the usual plot for me. And I was able to explore a new facet of Patrick Jane, who then suffers from things more than he can act on them. I don’t know how the production did it, but they make us look eight years younger simply by changing our hairstyle: a true miracle! (Laughs.)
“I really want to direct a movie”
What would you do if the series ends at the end of season 6?
What would I do if the series ends in a year or two or three – who knows? That’s a good question. I did not really thought about it. I’m already trying to make The Mentalist end in an aura of success and to keep it interesting to watch until the end. Then when it’s over, I think I’ll take a break from the small screen, take a well-deserved holiday, travel around the world, and probably produce some films.
Will you return to TV?
I’m not against it, but later and with different roles, even though I love the character of Patrick Jane. It’s really a part of me since 2008, but if I ever do another series, I will wait and allow time for the public to forget a little about the Mentalist.
You directed a new episode in this season 5…
And I’ll do it again in the sixth season. I love it, it’s really my thing. Besides, I really want to direct a film and I know I will as soon as possible! It’s really one of my goals in life.
What are your plans with your production company, Windalong?
I still intend to adapt an Australian initiation novel about surfing: Breath, by Tim Winton. It looks pretty good and the author will sign the movie script if the project succeeds. I have other ongoing projects, a lot of ideas that I’d like to develop!
You’re not the kind of actor who have a Twitter account and share beyond the scenes photos or pictures of your children…
Definitely not, indeed! It’s not even by choice: I’ve never taken the time to look at the social networks or see how they work or their interest. And to be honest, I don’t think I’m interesting to “follow” on Twitter, I don’t think my life or what I think is worthwhile to be followed every day…
The actress Naomi Watts, your best friend and compatriot, slipped into the skin of Lady Di, for the film Diana. What famous person would you like to play if you had the choice?
Ernest Hemingway: this creative genius has always fascinated me. He is a man of contrasts.