Lightning can strike once for a television star when a singular series role creates a legion of fans. For Noah Wyle, he's had three such turns — first as Dr John Carter in ER, then as rebel leader Tom Mason in Falling Skies, and now as bookish adventurer Flynn Carsen in The Librarians.
"I've had an atypical career in that I've done a lot of long-running shows," Wyle tells WHO. "Where it could be a grind, you have the opportunity to take a methodical approach to a long evolutionary arc for a character, to take them from a place of naiveté to wisdom, or from inexperience to jadedness, whatever road you want to map out. I find that the most rewarding part of doing television."
Of his current alter ego, Wyle says enthusiastically, "Flynn's been great. He's changed quite a bit."
Flynn Carsen started as a one-off TV movie protagonist in 2004's The Librarian: Quest for the Spear. He then appeared in two more movies before anchoring The Librarians series in 2014 (season three airs Wednesdays at 8.30 PM on the Universal Channel).
Now Wyle stars as Flynn but also directs some episodes and serves as a series producer. In one key move, Wyle helped cast young Australian actor John Harlan Kim as misfit Ezekiel. "In a lot of ways, this is the first job he'd ever done," Wyle says, "but I was so impressed by him and have been, and one of the best things about him is that he's good natured and doesn't mind a little teasing because he's the youngest and the newest."
Taking a bit of ribbing in stride is a natural part of on-set life for Wyle, the subject of some merry hazing from master prankster George Clooney when Wyle's career started in 1994 on ER. "I think it's very important to create sort of a collegiate atmosphere," says Wyle. "You want to take the work seriously but you don't want to take yourself seriously. It's very important for morale."
Wyle, 45, who has Frances Harper, his 15-month-old daughter with wife Sara Wells, and son Owen, 14, and daughter Auden, 11, from a previous marriage, is proud of keeping the Portland, Oregon, set family friendly for crew members with children and cast, such co-star Rebecca Romijn. "My son was on set with me the whole week I was directing," he says. "He was sort of my right-hand man, and my baby daughter is on set constantly. Rebecca brings her twin girls, so it's chill when we are making it."
In short, Wyle says, "This has been a dream job."
As for Romijn, who plays guardian and team leader Eve Baird, Wyle says, "she's terrific. We have the same work ethic, we both love our families, we both want to go home at the end of the day and be back with them, so we don't waste a lot of time, and she's really funny. She's got tremendous comic timing and I love playing opposite her because she plays great tennis. She and I have a good time figuring out ways to keep them both wanting to be together but inevitably being pushed apart."
To hear from Rebecca Romijn about her experience on The Librarians, pick up a copy of this week's WHO on newsstands everywhere.
You may also like...