Jeffrey Dean Morgan has been making the press rounds for P.S. I Love You, so everyone has gotten a chance to grill him about Watchmen. He plays The Comedian, and confirms that the movie is capturing every glorious moment of his story as depicted in the original Alan Moore/Dave Gibbons graphic novel.
“You walk on these sets and it boggles your mind, and I’m in it,” said Morgan. “I saw all these designs and sketches and, ‘This is what we’re building,’ like the New York set. ‘This is what we’re doing.’ I would walk down just this 10-acre piece of land, nothing there, with girders. They’d be like, ‘Here’s where the newsstand’s going to be. Here’s where The Comedian’s last breath is taken on the pavement. This is where he falls out of his high rise building.’ It’s all up now, and I walked on the set the other day. It’s working New York City streets with lights and taxis whizzing by you way too fast. It’s like you’re in New York. It is the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen in my life.”
For those who haven’t read Watchmen, note that the opening death of Comedian in New York City is kind of a big deal. “It’s so true to the book I can’t even begin to tell you how. Everything is so true to the book it’s insane. You can put anything that has been built for Watchmen next to a panel in the book and it’ll trip you out. It’s amazing.”
Playing the story’s iconic villain is a tough job for Morgan. “Well, The Comedian is The Comedian. By his actions, he’s hard to sympathize with. I think my job is trying to kind of humanize him because I want to humanize him as much as I can because you know you don’t hate The Comedian. No matter what he does, and he does some horrible f*cking things, so my job, at least this is what I’ve kind of taken upon myself, is you read the book, you get to the end of the book and you don’t hate The Comedian.
“Yet he is one of the most despicable people ever written, I think. So if I just play the character as written, there’s going to be no sympathy for him. You just won’t. You have to understand how he became this man and somehow leave the movie theater understanding why he did it somehow, whether that be killing a pregnant woman or trying to rape somebody. Still, my job is to kind of make that make sense for the audience, which is hard, harder than reading it.”