“No matter what they think is going to happen, people have no idea,” he tells Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast. “I think that people are going to love it. This is the last season, so they pulled all the stops out. It’s all in, let’s burn the house down. Literally. They just really made sure that no stone is left unturned. There was some episodes that I read, that had me jumping up and down in the place that I got in Albuquerque. It’s super exciting to see that how it’s all going to pan out. One thing is reading it, the other thing is filming it.”
On this episode of the Variety Awards Circuit Podcast, “Better Call Saul” baddie Tony Dalton talks about the flair he brings to playing the charming but deadly Lalo Salamanca on the show, and also doing something different on “Hawkeye.” But first, our Awards Circuit Roundtable discusses the return to Emmy season and the ridiculous number of TV premieres this spring. Listen below:
We’re all still in mourning following last week’s death of Nacho, played by Michael Mando. Nacho was desperate to get out of the cartel game, but it was too late for him. After Lalo managed to escape the assassination attempt against him, Nacho he’s currently on the run, presumed dead by authorities. But in the season opener, Lalo calls his uncle, Hector, to tell him he’s alive — and he knows whose to blame for the attempt on his life.
“This thing that happened to this character was sort of very shocking for him, he never saw it coming,” Dalton says. “So he’s got vengeance in his eyes.”
Lalo is a cold blooded killer, but he’s also a charmer with a smile — which may make him the scariest villain in TV. “It’s great, because when you’re charming, people are really nice back to you always,” Dalton says. “If you just have this sort of demeanor of Lalo, where he just looks like he doesn’t care about anything, everyone’s a little more happy around you. It was educational for me, how much if you’re just smiling around through life, people are a little more kind to you, at the bank, at the supermarket. Lalo’s like that.”
It’s been a big year for Dalton, who played Jack in the 2021 Disney+ Marvel series “Hawkeye.” Many viewers assumed Jack was a villain on “Hawkeye,” and they were all so very wrong.
“I was happy the fact that it wasn’t, again, the villain, and he ended up just being a nice guy who likes swords a lot,” Dalton says. He notes that shooting “Hawkeye” in the midst of the pandemic was unusual, as many of the actors shot their scenes in entirely different locations from each other.
“There was a lot of scenes where Hailee (Steinfeld) was in one town, Jeremy (Renner) was in another, and Vera (Fermiga) was in another city,” he says. “And you’re just doing shots of one person and then reacting to nobody. They’re going to end up filming that later on, in another studio somewhere else. And it’s like, wow, this is weird. And then you see it and it looks like everybody’s in the same room!”
Variety’s “Awards Circuit” podcast, produced Michael Schneider, is your one-stop listen for lively conversations about the best in film and television. Each week “Awards Circuit” features interviews with top film and TV talent and creatives; discussions and debates about awards races and industry headlines; and much, much more. Subscribe via Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify or anywhere you download podcasts. New episodes post every Thursday and Friday.