I love the pictures of Richard Armitage in interviews about his various roles. We see hints of the characters, but also hints of the man behind his theatrical “masque” at such times. This is just such a picture of RA [(1) right]. He is in costume and on location for Chris Ryan’s Strike Back Series 1 from 2010 and talking about his role for the dvd featurette. Mr. Armitage looks at ease with himself and his role–not just the role of honorable man John Porter, but the role of “star” of the mega mini series that would soon become an artistic and commercial juggernaut success.
What is it about Richard Armitage’s portrayal of John Porter that made the character seem so real to us? An interviewer asked Mr. Armitage once about his role of Porter, as to whether RA thought that he could be a special agent now that he had special forces physical and weapons training, etc. Richard Armitage looked at the interviewer–incredulously no doubt, because this was a print interview without blow by blow video to document RA’s every reaction, Ha!–and RA told the interviewer that his portrayal was “about replicating a look” [(2)]–such as this picture [(3) left]. So no, Mr. Armitage did not have the hubris to think that he could “be” a special forces agent. However, Richard Armitage certainly honored the tradition and sacrifice of individuals who put their lives on the line for their country and their fellow citizens through his detailed and meticulous research and training for the role of John Porter that enhanced his performance.
But whether it is real life or fiction, or if it is factual or faking it, Richard Armitage is not only the most exquisitely talented and authentic actor and storyteller of his generation, he is also an authentic human being. We perceive Richard Armitage’s genuineness as a person in his consistently cordial and gentlemanly interview persona, his team player professional ethos with regard to the ensemble artistic projects he is involved in, and his quiet support of charitable causes. In essence, it is Richard Armitage’s own humanity that shines through in his complex character portrayals [(4) right]–be they John Porter in Strike Back, or any of his many character portrayals. Richard Armitage is not artificial and neither are the characters that he brings to life. And despite Mr. Armitage’s protestations, he is a nice guy, with a nice guy face.
P.S. In honor of the creativity inherent in fan based videos and graphics–and to give you a taste of what you’d be missing were SOPA/PIPA to be passed, because they would severely limit what artistic products and their derivatives that might be shared online–here is a fun Strike Back video by the extremely talented bccmee for you to enjoy [(5) below]:
P.S. Yes, I know I said that I was only going to post on Mondays Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays–but that was unless I was “inspired”. And frankly, Richard Armitage’s portrayal of John Porter inspires me. Ha!
(1) Richard Armitage being interviewed about his role of John Porter for the Chris Ryan’s Strike Back Series 1 (2010), Behind the Scenes Featurette http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/StrikeBack/album/series1/BehindtheScenesfeaturette/slides/SBvids016.html
(2) “Richard Armitage: ‘I’m a bit mean, I haven’t got a nice guy face,” from The Telegraph online by Jasper Rees, July22, 2011 linked from RANet to http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/8653223/Richard-Armitage-Im-a-bit-mean.-I-havent-got-a-nice-guy-face.html
(3) Image of John Porter (as portrayed by Richard Armitage) in Strike Back Series 1 (2010) http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/StrikeBack/album/series1/StrikeBackPromo/album/SBPromo-09.jpg
(4) Image of John Porter (as portrayed by Richard Armitage) in Strike Back Series 1, episode 1 (2010) was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/StrikeBack/album/series1/Episode1HD/slides/ep1hd_084.html
(5) “Richard Armitage in Chris Ryan’s Strike Back Fan-Made Trailer” by Bccmee http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GnE8yrTpA_Y
(6) For more information about Strike Back Series 1 (2010), visit RANet’s career page for this project at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/career/138.html
(7) For more about Richard Armitage’s view about his role of John Porter, read “Tackling a Tough Shoot”, in The Stage for May 6, 2010 scanned by RANet was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/articlescans/Stage_060510.jpg