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Michael Emerson—What’s in Store For Person of Interest

Written by Blue Finch   // March 28, 2014

Michael EmersonWhat’s in Store For Person of Interest


Michael Emerson was interviewed by CBS News reporter Lauren Moraski about what is in store for viewers of CBS hit drama Person of Interest.


As well as introducing Michael as an Emmy winner and his current role as Finch , she went on to mention most everyone will remember that he played antihero Ben Linus (Lost). Benjamin Linus is often considered one of the greatest TV villains of all time.


That elicited a chuckle from Emerson and when asked, he said it was a fun role to play. For him those are the characters he likes to play because they have more fun than the good guys, at least for him he has more fun playing the villain. Emerson now plays hero and good guy Harold Finch on POI. When asked Michael says he enjoys playing Finch because the character is eccentric. That’s what he likes about Finch, that makes the character fun to play.


 I heard that James Caviezel said that, your co-star said “You know this is the hardest working cast he’s ever seen before.”


Emerson agreed it is hard work. They put in a lot of hours. Many of those are spent filming a lot of scenes out doors in winter. The one New York experienced this season was rough and has made him question his career choice at times. They filmed in a snowstorm in Washington Square Park one day all day. Filming in those kind of conditions you get so cold it’s hard for you to even speak ‘properly’. If you can’t speak clearly then you can’t do the scene correctly.


Amy Acker, Michael Emerson, Root, Finch

Finch (Michael Emerson) and Root (Amy Acker) Washington Square Park


We’re in the midst of season three. What can we see the rest of the season? What can we expect?


Emerson talked about how there is now competition for the Machine. [We learned in the previous episodes Lethe and Alethia other agencies were trying to build their own versions and when the Machine went online, the other projects were terminated. One programmer tried to save his machine by hiding its drives and now that program has fallen into the hands of Decima and it’s leader Greer (Jonah Nolan). Samaritan, as it is known, hasn’t been activated, yet. Will it be an anti-Machine?] The Machine is not playing by the rules any longer. So Finch and his team don’t know if they will get numbers or even the right ones. They still save lives, but are they now pawns of the Machine?


Your character has evolved. The Machine has evolved. The show has evolved. What can you say about your character’s story arc?


Any character on a long running series has a chance to evolve, become more complicated or at least Emerson hopes they do. We are starting to see a different Finch than the one from seasons past. He has grown weary from all the events happening this season, numerous powerful forces are surrounding them, at times seeming almost unstoppable. Finch may have to face moral choices of his own. I don’t think Finch will make any immoral ones but he might have to fight a little dirty himself in the upcoming battle of the machines, one against the other or those that want to destroy or abuse them.


When asked about himself and acting as a profession, Mr. Emerson talked about how he had always liked acting but gave up on it for almost ten years. He spent some of that time as an illustrator. Eventually he found himself doing plays, Shakespeare mostly and that will always be something he likes to do. He had to find other jobs to support himself carpenter, teacher among other things, but acting was his passion.


It wasn’t until in his fifties Emerson was finally able to make a living from acting. He often tells young actors you may have to wait for success. He says if someone  had told him that when he was in his twenties, that he’d have to wait 30 years to succeed, he’d have said that’s crazy and ‘bagged’ the idea. (Thank you Michael Emerson for not ‘bagging’ the idea).


Emerson thinks younger actors some times find fame early on and can’t hold on to it and look far it again the rest of their lives. Michael is thankful he has found his fame late in life because he is in the rest of his life.


My thanks to Michael Emerson for his hard work on Person of Interest and his decision to keep acting, New York City winters and all.


Michael Emerson Discusses Person Of Interest And More

Person of Interest airs Tuesdays on CBS 10/9c



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