Michael Emerson is featured in Entertainment Weekly magazine.
Here's what the text says:
Over the course of 20 years as a stage and screen actor, Michael Emerson has played a sniveling serial killer and Shakespeare's Iago. But it wasn't until the 52-year-old's searing and perturbing turn as Ben Linus—the Machiavellian leader of the Others on Lost—that he got to pretend to murder a bunny, among other devious deeds. "It's a way to live out a delicious fantasy," he says. "I'm a fairly mild-mannered and polite person. To play a character who seems to be all that on the surface and yet jerks people around...that's fun."
The heady role is the peak of a late-career boom for Emerson, whose ability to portray an unsettling mix of Midwestern naiveté and scheming intelligence came to national prominence with an Emmy-winning turn as a killer on The Practice in 2001. On Lost, he is a study in understated inscrutability, using pointed stares, pursed lips, and cutting delivery to play the master manipulator. Although to Emerson, Linus is hardly your typical creep. "I have no evidence from the script that [Ben's] really a bad, bad man," he says. "I'm still not convinced that he isn't some kind of freedom fighter." Great, yet another Lost mystery.—Michael Endelman
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