“He thinks he’s stronger and smarter than all the Cleons who came before him…” The American actor tells how his character has changed since season 1.
Season 2 of Foundation was launched on Apple TV+ (and also in France for Canal+ subscribers). The fantastic adaptation of Isaac Asimov continues its biblical enterprise and skips a century altogether, to show us the evolution of the Foundation initiated by the psychohistorian Harry Seldon (Jared Harris), to counter the inevitable fall of the Empire and bring Humanity into a new era.
“After the prophecy of season 1, in which we learned that Humanity was walking towards a very dark era, when the Empire will fall for sure, we find the Foundation 140 years later”decrypts the actor Lee Pace for Premiere. “The Empire is indeed shrinking and at the other end of the Galaxy, Harry Seldon’s Foundation is thriving. Above all, they have developed the ability to “jump” into space, which changes everything! It upsets all the balances. So the Cleon that I play faces this changing, declining Empire. And he is very sure of himself. He has a plan to save his dynasty.”
Lee Pace now plays Cleon 17, four generations after the version of Empire he previously played. The Clone Dynasty has been corrupted (in Season 1) and the sole ruler of the Galaxy has now changed significantly: “He’s a very different Cleon as he no longer shares the same consciousness as his clone brethren.“, confirms to us Lee Pace. “It is no longer a continuation of Cleon I. He is no longer the same man. He knows he’s an individual in his own right, and he thinks he’s stronger and smarter than all the Cleons who came before him. To the point that he wants to end the line to be the last of the Cléons.“
Alone on his throne, he thinks he can count on the only Demerzel, this android who has guided Empire for centuries and centuries: “Cleon sees her as his soul mate! Their relationship, in Season 2, has changed. It is almost intimate. Because for this Empire, no one else can measure up. He takes himself for a God, so he does not imagine that a human being is a valid partner. There is only her in his eyes. She was his mother. Today, she is his lover. He trusts her. Especially since he owns her, literally.“
She raised him and now he sleeps with her. But for Lee Paceit’s not “not so much an incestuous relationship. I don’t see things like that because Demerzel is a machine! Laura plays it with a lot of humanity, but it’s a machine! Cleon is well aware that it’s just a centuries-old robot. But he loves her. There’s no one in the galaxy he cares about more.”
Laura Birn intervenes and smiles:Especially since it’s an easy relationship for his ego! He only cares about himself. And she only cares about him too..”
The actress pursues and tempers this relationship between Cleon and Demerzel, which seems doomed to failure. Because Laura Birn points out that his character is made of metal and electronics”is on a mission to protect the Genetic Dynasty from clones. It’s in his program, in his code. So inevitably, the trajectory of the two characters will end up moving away. Especially since each Cleon may have the impression of being unique. But Demerzel, she has seen them all! She knows that is not true and that they are just the continuation of Cleon I. And in the end, whether she likes it or not, her raison d’être is to protect this heritage…”
No happy ending in sight for this creepy love story! Season 2 of Foundation will continue this Friday on Apple TV+ and also in France for Canal+ subscribers.