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Jacob Mendez
Jacob Mendez

Kyle MacLachlan: He owes his career to Lynch. I don’t always understand his films

2024 is the year for MacLachlan also the fortieth anniversary of cooperation with David Lynch. The two met while working on the adaptation “Dunes” Frank Herbert. MacLachlan played Paul Atreides. One of the agents spotted him when he appeared in a supporting role in “Świętoszko” at a theater in Seattle. After being invited to test in front of the camera, the young actor didn’t even hesitate. He immediately dropped everything and went to Mexico, where the film was shot.

MacLachlan had very fond memories of his first meetings with Lynch. “Before the test shoot, I had never seen a camera before. I was looking straight into the lens and I was completely stunned. David approached me. I told him that I probably wouldn’t be able to do it. He replied: ‘You’ll be great, everything will turn out great. It’ll be all right. I know you can do it’. (…) David gives me the confidence to do things I’m afraid of,” the actor admitted in an interview with Indiewire.

Unfortunately, “Dune” turned out to be a box office bomb, and the producers withdrew from financing Lynch’s next films. So the young actor moved to Los Angeles and tried his hand at castings. He tried, among other things, for a role in “Top Gun” – without success. When he wanted to give up, it turned out that Lynch had collected the amount needed to finance “Blue Velvet” and he was the one he saw in the main role. MacLachlan joked that he arrived on set two weeks in advance – that’s how badly he needed the job.

The film turned out to be a huge success, giving Lynch the status of an auteur and earning him an Oscar nomination. MacLachlan, however, never had to worry about unemployment again. However, this does not change the fact that his career was forever associated with Lynch. The biggest role the actor was to receive from the director was yet to come.

The director had been trying to make a film with screenwriter Mark Frost for a long time. Previous experiences led them to create “Twin Peaks”, a combination of thriller and soap opera. The series told the story of a sleepy town somewhere in Washington state, whose peace is disturbed by the discovery of the body of Laura Palmer – a local high school student. FBI agent Dale Cooper, played by MacLachlan, is assigned to the case. The man enchanted by the town soon discovers that it also hides a second, dark side.

Lynch and Frost wrote Cooper as if he were an older version of the “Blue Velvet” hero. They also gave him a lot of slightly strange behaviors and habits, as well as sayings that he told everyone around him. Let’s add to this a love for cherry pie, black coffee and long monologues recorded for the mysterious Diane – and we have one of the most characteristic television characters at the turn of the last decades of the 20th century.

MacLachlan played Cooper in two seasons of “Twin Peaks,” as well as its 2017 sequel and film prequel, “Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me.” This role earned him a Golden Globe and two Emmy nominations.

The actor revealed in one of the interviews that he does not always know what the creator wanted to convey. “I don’t even pretend to understand much of what David does. However, I realize that I am a kind of conduit through these fictional worlds. And although it is undoubtedly a huge challenge, I feel good about it” – MacLachlan stated.

“There are many aspects of his productions that I still don’t understand – and I don’t have to, I don’t need to. They are empirical films. They ask a lot of questions without providing many answers. I think David knows perfectly well what he wants to do and how to do it. , I just don’t always know why. I think certain things appear on screen just to put the viewer in a certain state of mind. David then seems to say: ‘Stop thinking and analyzing so much, just be here and now, experience this moment’, so I give him control. Because I know he holds a map in his hands,” the actor said.