Based. on the 2014 novel of the same name, The Peripheral is a new sci-fi series on Prime Video that just had its season finale premiere on the streamer. The Hollywood Handle spoke with star Gary Carr who has had a long career and appeared in a variety of projects including Downton Abbey. In this interview — which occurred a day before the finale premiered — Carr discusses his favorite sci-fi films, working with Chloë Grace Moretz and what audiences can expect in the finale and going forward in future seasons.
THH: Congratulations on The Peripheral. I’m like such a sucker for like high-concept sci-fi and stuff like that. And I wanted to ask you, are you a fan of sci-fi? Do you have any favorite sci-fi movies or shows or even books?
Gary Carr: Yeah, I’m a massive fan of sci-fi. My introduction to sci-fi growing up was via my dad, um, he is the original “sci-fi geek.” And so we’ve seen every episode of Star Trek, we’ve seen every Star Trek film, we’ve seen every Star Wars film. But outside of that, I loved [Steven] Spielberg. I was looking at his credits the other day and he’s actually done some of my favorite sci-fi projects. Like I loved A.I. Artificial Intelligence — I thought that was so awesome. And I loved Minority Report
And then I loved like all the other ones from back in the day, Blade Runner, 2001: A Space Odyssey, those are amazing, amazing films. I thought [with] Blade Runner 2049, they did a fantastic job of doing that remake. The list is endless, but I’m a huge, huge fan of sci-fi.
THH: Star Trek or Star Wars?
Carr: [sighs] That’s so difficult. I’ll say this. I love the message [of] Star Wars because I think it’s got a lot of heart to it and a lot of humanity and I love how it’s about they speak about “the force,” using the force for good and that whole light [side vs. dark side]. I love all that stuff. But I think Star Trek is just also very, very cool. What would you say?
THH: I’ve actually never seen a Star Trek movie… I’m only a Star Wars guy, personally. I don’t want to keep you off track too much, but what’s interesting about The Peripheral is that the crux of it is the idea of VR and all that — I know Ready Player One also did that recently — but were you somebody that’s into VR at all going into this show?
Carr: The first time I played VR was this year and I was just like, whoa. It was so immersive and so cool. So that was my introduction. Even like after filming the series, I wasn’t encouraged to jump into VR — I didn’t really care. I’m more of an old-school gamer. Like I love all that stuff, but, it’s [VR] very cool. It’s a vibe for sure.
THH: Well in the show, you share a lot of scenes with Chloë Grace Moretz. My earliest memory of seeing her was in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie when I was like nine, so seeing her progress throughout the years has been fascinating as she takes on more serious roles. Can you talk a little bit about her as a screen partner in the series?
Carr: Chloë, she’s such a sweetheart and she’s also like awesome [at] what she does. And we’re very similar, like, we just want to do our best work every time we come on set. I think what was really nice is that we just really vibed together as people and that just helped the whole process and we had a lot of fun just shooting this stuff together. And we spoke a lot about food and music because we’re both massive friends with those two things.
But she’s also very serious about the work, [she] considers the details, which I’m very much about as well. And yeah, it was awesome working with her. I’ve got nothing negative or bad — not that I would’ve anyway [smiles] — [and] she genuinely is like an awesome person and it was really a great experience.
THH: I think I read that the filming of this series was back last year, so it’s been over a year probably since you wrapped, right? I know you’re doing so many projects and I’m sure it’s difficult to keep track of that, but was it hard with this kind of series where there are things that could be spoiled? Is it ever hard for you to keep details under wraps when we talk to friends or family, especially when it’s been over a year since you filmed the show?
Carr: No [smiles]. We never speak about what I do actually, me and my friends. Actually, I don’t even know what my friends do. We don’t speak about our jobs. We speak about everything else and so no one ever asked me anything — same with my family. No one ever asked me anything, actually [laughs], so it’s really easy for me to just keep everything secret [smiles].
THH: Well my last question for you has to do with the finale obviously airing tomorrow. Obviously, without spoilers, can you just give a little tease as to what people can expect when they watch it?
Carr: I guess people can expect answers to a lot of questions that they have because I know people have a lot of questions. And maybe, I don’t know, [this] probably goes without saying [but] maybe some conclusions. One thing Jonathan [Nolan] had told me was that [in] season one of a lot of his projects, he likes to create worlds and build worlds and [that] it’s usually an introduction and a setup for something else, something bigger and more epic to come. I think people might even have more questions after the season finale, but I guess just expect more of the same,, some cool action sequences.
I actually don’t know because I know we shot some stuff for the last episode and it changed and so I actually don’t know what’s going on. I’m gonna find out tomorrow.
THH: Well, I think I’m out of time with you, but maybe I’ll give Star Trek a chance. Thank you so much for your time.
Carr: Yeah, definitely watch a series as well, like Star Trek: The Original Series back in the day was really freaking awesome. That’s a lot of viewing, but you could jump in anywhere, I guess [smiles].
All eight episodes of The Peripheral are streaming on Prime Video now.