Kyle speaks with Simon Fisher-Becker at Salt Lake Comic Con
Kyle speaks with Simon Fisher-Becker at Salt Lake Comic Con. His more notable roles include The Fat Friar in the Harry Potter film Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, and Dorium Maldovar in series 5 and 6 of Doctor Who, where he asks the first and final question.
Question: How was it to be cast in role of Dorium on Doctor Who?
Simon: I was Very happy go get the audition, I was a fan of Doctor Who, and originally it was just the one scene, they brought in many actors and I was lucky enough to be chosen.
Q: Did you realize or did Steven [Moffat] talk to you about the significance of your infamous last line “Doctor Who?”
S: When I got the script, I could see immediately the significance as well as the privilege of being the one to deliver it. What I did first was bounce around my kitchen, and then I had to decide how to deliver it, what pitch, and variations on the theme you heard. The question had been asked by many people over the years, but then Doran really punctuated the significance. And we all thought we would then get an answer, but what we got was “who is Clara”. If we found out who he actually is that would be the end of the series itself, I think we will find out more of what he is about.
Q: what is it like to be in Utah?
S: This morning looking outside the window, it looked like a car park with lots and lots of trees. I am rather fond of trees so I didn’t mind, and then you look the other way and I saw the mountains, and everyone is so lovely, not that I say I was expecting everyone to be completely horrible. I consider myself to be very lucky.
Q: they filmed an episode or two here
Q: how long did you walk around your house repeating the like, practicing “Doctor Who?”
S: I had the script about a week before the read-through, then about two weeks after that. The strange thing, now that I’ve done that people assume that I know what I’m doing, so nobody talks to you they just accept what you do. The only thing they might say is ‘could you give us another option’ but they won’t actually tell you what they want. They have such a generally relaxed atmosphere you’ve got the freedom to experiment to some degree. And they can choose what they like, of whatever I do.
But it was when I first got it, and the significance, and that it was given to me, I have to admit, I was like a rabbit in headlights. They gave to me, the last line, of the last episode, of the series.
Q: Is there something you wish people/fan recognized you from, other than Doctor Who
S: I’m not yet in a position where it feels ‘oh god they’re going on about Doctor Who’, I haven’t reached that yet, long may it be so. I think it’s great just to be there, just from the reception. I do occasionally get questions about something else; the downside is they will ask about something I did 20 years ago. Blimey, what was that? I have done lots of stuff, from television to film, so I’m really grateful to Doctor Who to keep myself alive, and as a result of that I’ve gotten involved in lots of other things in the UK some is hush hush about.
Q: what would you be most proud of?
S: I come from a family who were medical and scientists, teachers, nobody was an actor, where that came from must be a throwback in the genes. so I left my front door, and I had no idea where to get going, and you meet lots of people who try to help you, some are very well intentioned but have no idea, and some that are just a total waste of time, and I’ve managed to wade my way through that and through hard work and determination I’m here in Utah. People invite me from all over the world; I get fan mail from literally all over the world because I was lucky enough to get Doctor Who. I joke with my family; it’s taken me 25 years to become an overnight success. When you’re an actor, so much relies on these productions, I’m of an age now most contacts I’ve made have either retired or died. So younger casting directors don’t think of the actor the same, 20 years in the national theatre means nothing at all, which is a shame. There is a phrase, what’s he been in, no it’s what’s he done, which means what has he been in on telly or film that I would recognize him. So what I’m proud of is that I’m here, and I’m talking to you. However, the great thing is meeting the fans, who are wonderful. I know there are some people that are a bit cautious to meet me, and I know that feeling. There are actors I’ve worked with; I’ve had to walk around the block three times to get the courage to go in. So I know that feeling. And I find it uncomfortable that others might feel that about me. Denholm Elliott was my mentor, he said, if some success comes your way look after your fans, so I’m doing that, but it’s not a task or a challenge at all.