Follow Us on Twitter

Basic Instinct 2 - David Morrissey interview

David Morrissey and Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct 2

Interview by Rob Carnevale

DAVID Morrissey talks about appearing in Basic Instinct 2, the pressure of being nude and what it means in terms of his career…

Q. You are a self-confessed fan of the first movie. How big a surprise was it that you were approached for this sequel?
A. I never questioned it really. The script came along and like any film I read it and judged it on that. I thought it was fantastic and it was a privilege to go up for it. I met Michael Caton Jones first and then Sharon Stone in LA and all the way along, I was thinking to myself: “God, I hope I get this job.” When it happened, it was just a pleasure to do. But you take each job, be it a sequel or whatever, on the strength of the script and this was a cracker, so we just got on with it.

Q. How do you think this film differs from the original? Were you ever concerned that it was simply a re-run?
A. It was important for me to look at this film in itself, rather than thinking of the first film. I think one of the beauties of it being relocated to London is the fact that the audience is slightly ahead of my character because they already know Catherine Tramell. They’ve seen her and are up on her story. So there’s a sense in this film that I’m on a journey and the audience is saying “don’t go there” because they know the character better than I do. That’s one of the pleasures of seeing this film.

Q. You are quoted as saying how you thought the boundaries were pushed back in the first film. How daunting was it to play your part in pusing them a bit further?
A. As far as the sexual content is concerned, it would have been a bit weird of me to read Basic Instinct 2 and think: “Oh, you want me to take my clothes off?” You can’t be surprised by something like that. It is a sexual thriller and I think the film delivers on both of those words in spades.

Q. But there is a sense that the first film set new standards of excitement in terms of that combination of sex and violence?
A. Only because it was a good story. There’s a sense that the sexual content of that film worked because it was a great film. Likewise, in the second film. You see films that have sexual content and you don’t like it because you don’t like the film. It has to be telling a story all the time.

Q. So how far is too far in your opinion?
A. I guess too far is when it suddenly becomes gratuitous from the story. Sex scenes or love scenes are like every other scene that you do. They have to tell a story within themselves and as an actor you approach them in exactly the same way – how does my character change within this story? What are they trying to achieve? What’s the character trying to get? And how does it move them on? So you look at those scenes in the same way as every other scene that you’ve done – just with your clothes off!

Q. Did you see this as a step up in career terms? As a way of getting bigger work?
A. You recognise that you’re on a bigger stage. But how you approach it in terms of creating a character and what you do on a daily basis is exactly the same. I hope that will always be the same. The one difference, obviously, is that if you’re doing British TV and it’s raining and the whole dialogue is about sunny, they change the dialogue. Here, there’s money to say “let’s do it tomorrow when the weather might be better, or let’s do it next week”. There was no difference in the approach, although I’m obviously aware I’m in a big film.

Read the review