Joseph Fiennes Gets Tough and Buff in ABC's ??FlashForward'

Fiennes plays a G-man on
Fiennes plays a G-man on "FlashForward." (By Craig Sjodin -- Abc Via Associated Press)
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Thursday, September 24, 2009

After back-to-back leads romancing Cate Blanchett in "Elizabeth" and Gwyneth Paltrow in "Shakespeare in Love," Joseph Fiennes was a shoo-in for A-list Hollywood hunkery. But the roles that should have launched him instead pigeonholed him: For years the British actor all but vanished, appearing in a yawning parade of period pieces and one horrendously bad Heather Graham movie ("Killing Me Softly"? Anyone?).

Now Fiennes is back, and playing way out of type. Think: rippling biceps. Think: American accent. Think: gun-toting G-man. In the much-hyped "FlashForward," premiering Thursday on ABC, the entire world simultaneously experiences a glimpse six months into the future. Fiennes is the California FBI agent tasked with figuring out how to mess with destiny, save his partner and prevent his wife from having an affair. Welcome to the 21st century, Joe.

-- Monica Hesse

How traumatic is it for you to not be wearing tights and poofy britches?

It's very easy. I do miss sliding off the back of a horse, but apart from that it's all good. It's actually rather wonderful running around, blazing a Glock on my hip.

"FlashForward" is being compared to "Lost." In a smackdown between the two casts, who would win and why?

I've watched "Lost" and loved it, so it's really flattering that someone somewhere made that comparison. But I think it begins and ends with the large cast. There would be no smackdown. I think it would be a meeting of minds.

But there is the long-form, sci-fi mystery connection. How well are plot secrets guarded? Does a scary-looking man deliver your scripts and swear you to secrecy?

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