Hollywood legend, Angela Bassett, has graced both the small screen and the silver screen for years. Now, she’s bringing her talent to the Mission: Impossible franchise in Mission: Impossible - Fallout, which is now playing. She sat down and talked about joining the blockbuster film franchise, her role in Marvel’s Black Panther, and the next season of the Fox television series 9-1-1.
Screen Rant: I love the Mission: Impossible franchise. Now, a lot of younger fans only know it as a movie series. But a lot of older fans know it as a TV show. Were you fan growing up at all?
Angela Bassett: Yes. You know, to see that match strike, that fuse.
Screen Rant: What got you on board for this?
Angela Bassett: I got a call early, early one weekday morning from my agent about seven o’clock in the morning. And, you know, that's before business even began.
Screen Rant: You're like, what?
Angela Bassett: Yeah, right. What mish? What mission are you talking about? I really was like a bit confused. I couldn't believe it was this franchise, which is huge. And it's been a part of our lives and some form of fashion, as you say, for decades.
Screen Rant: Hollywood legends like yourself, Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin, all shared screen in the same movie with a lot of younger actors as well, like Henry Cavill. Going through this film and with the process and everything. Was there any fun stories that you guys were able to share with each other about the filmmaking process or even just this alone?
Angela Bassett: Oh, I mean the, I mean, although we go to some glamorous locations, there's some times where you were really out in the hinterlands and it is not glamorous at all. It is cold. It is frigid. It is uncomfortable. But you know, everyone's so warm, so wonderful. The crew is bar none, just excellence, bar none. So, you’re just having a great time and really grateful to be a part of it.
Screen Rant: I know. It's so amazing. The shots are so beautiful in this film.
Angela Bassett: From the opening shot, right? I was like, oh!
Screen Rant: Goosebumps, right?
Angela Bassett: I don’t know what to look at. Whether I'm listening to the score, I'm looking at the beauty or the…trying to decipher and stay at least, you know, not let them get too far ahead of me in terms of the story. Because there's so much twisting and turning going on. I'm leaning forward in my seat. I'm making noise because, I'm getting surprised every now and again.
Screen Rant: Talking about those twists and turns your characters very complex in this film. Very complex. So, for the audience, can you describe who your character is?
Angela Bassett: Erica Sloan and she's the deputy director of the CIA. And she's recently come up in the world from assistant to Hunley, who played by Alec Baldwin. And she has a very different way of taking care of business at hand. Walker works with her in this, played by Henry Cavill. And so, she sends him on a mission. He's going to be her eyes and her ears and take her directive.
Screen Rant: Where would you like to see your character go next in the Mission: Impossible world?
Angela Bassett: Hmmm, I've not even thought about that. But I have thought about… about returning to see that. And I have to. Because I don't know, I don't think I fell off into a ravine anywhere. So--
Screen Rant: Not that I saw. Speaking of returning, Black Panther was a huge hit. And one of my favorite films.
Angela Bassett: Thank you.
Screen Rant: What have you talked to Ryan Coogler and Marvel about possibly returning for the sequel? Because it's obviously in post post-production now. I’m sorry, pre-production now.
Angela Bassett: Is it in pre-production already?
Screen Rant: I believe so.
Angela Bassett: You would think they'd be busy coming up with the script. You know, Marvel Universe or something. It'd be coming up with something. Last time I saw him, I think Ryan was still just decompressing as you can imagine. It was huge. It was a huge undertaking. So, he looked good, but you say, hey, you ready to get back at it?
Screen Rant: It paid off though.
Angela Bassett: Wooh. Like, just give him a moment.
Screen Rant: Do you think your character disappeared with the Thanos snap?
Angela Bassett: No.
Screen Rant: No? Okay. That's interesting.
Angela Bassett: Neither did my daughter. Shuri, she's a bright girl there in Wakanda. So…
Screen Rant: Two of my favorite characters. Now, what can we expect from your character on 9-1-1 this season?
Angela Bassett: 9-1-1 going into our second season. I don’t know… it ended with this potential of a budding, interaction with one of the firemen. And they've been both been going through their own personal struggles and stuff. So, maybe they can be there for each other.
Screen Rant: I'm excited.
Angela Bassett: In a more intimate way. We will see.
Screen Rant: That’s a little bit of a spoiler. A teaser, right?
Angela Bassett: I don't know. I don't… I'm just talking about the way it ended. I was like, what! I'm reading, I was like, what!
Screen Rant: It's pretty crazy. Second season, it's going to be a lot of fun I'm assuming. Have you guys started shooting yet?
Angela Bassett: We haven't. Well, literally we're supposed to start yesterday, the tenth. So, we're gearing up.
Screen Rant: Little by little.
Angela Bassett: Slowly, softly and then we're going to hit it with a bang.
- Mission: Impossible - Fallout (2018) release date: Jul 27, 2018