‘Succession’ Star Brian Cox Doubles Down on Method Acting Advice

Brian Cox leaned into his now well-known views on Method acting during a late-night visit to promote the final season of Succession.

The veteran Scottish actor, who plays patriarch Logan Roy on the hit HBO series, has publicly expressed his disapproval of the immersive acting approach ever since the viral New Yorker profile on his co-star Jeremy Strong, who plays his onscreen son Kendall Roy, first made headlines in 2021.

Strong, in a later cover story with The Hollywood Reporter, admitted that he was hurt that his co-stars, including Cox, came off dismissive about his process in the piece. “I had a safe forum to share those things — and ultimately that experience was put in doubt,” he said of opening up in the profile. Still, he said of his co-stars, “We’re a family in every sense of the word. But foundationally, there’s deep respect and even love.”

But that hasn’t stopped Cox from sharing his opinion about Method acting (“I don’t hold a lot of the American shit, having to have a religious experience every time you play a part. It’s crap,” he has previously said, among other comments reflecting a difference of opinion between Cox and Strong.) And he again doubled down with a bit on the Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon ahead of the premiere of the fourth and final season of Succession, which returns on Sunday.

When introducing a video that he said would “more eloquently” express his feelings about Method acting, he teed up the clip by saying, “Well you know, Jimmy, I’ve been a little harsh on it. And I’m sorry about that. In fact, I’ve been trying to set the record straight in a Master Class series of acting that I’ve been doing.” The actor then appears in a Master Class spoof on the craft of acting, where he shouts, “Just fucking do it! Say the fucking lines, and don’t bump into the fucking furniture.”

During his visit with Fallon, Cox also weighed in on the shock announcement that Succession would be ending with its previously announced fourth season. Sarah Snook, who plays his onscreen daughter Shiv Roy, had visited Fallon the night before where she shared that she filmed the last episode without knowing for sure that it was the final one.

Cox shared that creator Jesse Armstrong hinted to him that the show would be ending but that Armstrong didn’t officially decide until later on, presumably after filming wrapped. Cox says he “felt in his bones” that it was the final season, and reiterated his acceptance over the show ending: “When the party’s at the best, leave,” he said, quoting the adage. “Jesse Armstrong, our great creator, he won’t let something go past its sell-by date. He knows television isn’t infinite. For him, it’s finite. And each season tops last season; there’s only so much you can do in topping the season.”

When speaking to THR at the premiere event for Succession earlier this week, Cox said the following about Strong: “Doing the scenes with Jeremy has been a truly great experience, he’s a wonderful actor to work with in that sense. That relationship has been very powerful and the writing has also been very powerful. We both had a great time working with one another, it’s been incredible.”

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