Q: You’ve directed episodes of “Elementary” and will be directing one of “Why Women Kill.” Does that change how you view your role as an actor?
A: I think it just gives you a greater depth of where your mind is because you’re not just a part of something in a very exterior way but you’re also very enmeshed in a greater picture. You know, because when you’re directing, you have to see something from the microcosm of it, not just like zoomed in and I’m just focusing on my lines and the scene. You know, you really have to understand everything from the production level and I think that makes it very important that you’re a greater part of the team.
And it’s a much more dimensional way of working to me because when you’re just acting in something, you just have to show up and do your lines. But when you’re directing, you really have to have an understanding of the inner workings of what’s going on. And I enjoy that because you also get to work in tandem with actors and I enjoy actors so much … . That’s a highlight for me.
Q: Was it sad putting Joan Watson away after seven seasons of “Elementary”?
A: No, I felt like Joan is never away. You know, she was such a part of my life and I didn’t feel sad about the show ending. I felt like it was such a victory, really, to accomplish seven seasons and to have mastered that kind of work ethic with that team of people. I felt really grateful. I learned an incredible amount of knowledge. I gained so much respect for people who work on that kind of intense level and I also started directing network television on that show. It really led me into another direction so I don’t feel sadness. I feel pride and I feel like I gained a family and a great deal of friendships that I don’t know that I would have if I had just been working on short shows or movies. So I take with me a rainbow of memories from that show that I will never forget.
George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.