Brett Cullen Addresses ‘Under the Dome’ Daddy Issues
Last week, Under the Dome show reps answered one burning question (among others) about the series’ upcoming sophomore season: What is up with Barbie’s family? Well, Wilmywood fans, Barbie has a history — and a daddy. But this announcement creates another long list of questions — primarily, just who do you think you are, Don Barbara? Seriously. Who are you?
This is not a rhetorical question. Maybe we should just ask the man who plays him, Brett Cullen. The Texas-born actor has been insanely busy over the past few years, but has made his way back to Wilmington, North Carolina, to shoot Under the Dome season 2. I knew he couldn’t stay away.
“I shot a Matlock episode [in Wilmington] years ago and shot a TV movie called Something Borrowed, Something Blue,” he said. “My house in Under the Dome is the same house we shot some of Something Borrowed at. The first AC [assistant camera on Under the Dome] reminded me of that, since we had done that together.”
Cullen was also here last summer, filming the indie film River Guard, which will be released in the near future: “I love Wilmington and shooting in North Carolina. It is such a great location. Even though it has become quite a bustling city these days, it retains its beach-town feel — and being a surfer, I love that.”
Yeah, yeah, you love us. Now dish on the juicy details of playing Barbie’s dad. “They have been estranged for two and a half years,” Cullen revealed. “He was a man who is very powerful in Washington and knows the big players. He is also a big player, but he lost his wife and his connection to his son. It is something he has missed.” As far as their relationship as father and son, Brett feels that it’s a bit tense. “He loves his son but it is a strained relationship, I feel, because he was a father who taught ‘tough love’ and wanted his son to follow in his footsteps.”
With Cullen’s crazy acting schedule (see his IMDb page; it’s exhausting), he says it’s hard to find time to actually sit down and dedicate time to a television show, let alone watch anything he’s been in. Did he watch the series before he was cast? “I watched an episode last season, but with my schedule these days, thank God for TiVo!” he said.
While Cullen plays catch-up, we must go back and review the one show that connects the dots onUnder the Dome. It’s like six degrees of Lost. If you’ve read my blog, you know I refer to that show often because, let’s be honest, just about everyone who goes Under the Dome is connected to Lost in some way. Brett played the role of Goodwin Stanhope.
“I have heard about the connection,” Cullen admitted. “The main one being my old friend Jack Bender, who ran the series. He directed and was the showrunner on that. It’s good to be reunited with Jack again.” Jack is directing episode 8, for which Brett returned to Wilmington last week.
Recently, Neal Baer revealed that some Chester’s Mill folks might get out of the Dome,while others might enter. That being said, I know I am not alone when I wonder: How the hell did Don Barbara get in? Or does he? “I’m here because of an offer I couldn’t resist,” Cullen said coyly. “If I answer this, I will be giving plot points away. Then I’d have to kill you!”
Fair enough, but I had to ask. The countdown is on until we find out for ourselves what indeed is happening inside and outside the Dome this season.
Under the Dome premieres Monday, June 30, at 9 p.m. EST on CBS.