Exclusive Interview: Missing (ABC) Sean Bean Talks Character Return, Upcoming Episodes and Popeye (Yes, The Sailorman)

Missing (ABC) Sean Bean

When the ABC series Missing premiered a few weeks ago, it opened with Sean Bean’s character Paul Winstone being blown to bits in a car explosion.

It turns out that the news of his demise were greatly exaggerated as he apparently was alive and well in the last scene of last week’s Missing episode “Tell Me No Lies”.

TV Equals had the opportunity to chat with the supremely talented Sean Bean about the return of his supposedly deceased character, what impact this will have on Becca (Ashley Judd) and what fictional character he would like to rescue him if he was missing.

Check out what he had to say below and don’t miss the upcoming episode of Missing titled “The Three Bears” which airs tomorrow Thursday April 12 at 8 pm on ABC. (For more information, check out the Missing official site.)


Paul is back. That’s a twist.

Sean Bean: Yeah. I’m glad he is, as well, because I did a few interviews and I had to explain why I was only in one episode, like, ‘There’s flashbacks and this and that,’ but he’s back in present time as it were and also in flashback on occasions.

What can you tease about the upcoming episode in terms of how Paul’s return will impact Becca and her son and the story overall?

Sean Bean: Well, it’s difficult. It’s a kind of a reconciliation – I don’t know if you can call it that. But it’s quite a cold kind of understanding that they have between each other because of the length of time that they’ve been apart and what I did to fake my own death. So, Becca is very reluctant to trust him again. At the same time she’s been involved with Giancarlo and I’ve obviously been with a few other women in between, but it’s not really about that.

I think it’s just about the trust between the two of them and she’s very reluctant to trust me. Paul says, ‘We’ve got to work together on this. We’ve got to trust each other because he’s our child. So, whether you like it or  not, whether you like me or not that’s what we’ve got to do.’

Are we going to find out more about who Paul is, whether he’s a good guy or a bad guy this time around?

Sean Bean: Yeah. Over the next few episodes that’s revealed and he tells Becca why he had to go away, why he had to sacrifice so much, not being with his family and just watching them from afar. That’s something that she can’t quite get her head around in the beginning, and it’s always something that’s been a thorn in his side, that this happened.

But at the present moment Paul can’t really tell her or tell anyone what his situation is. All he knows is that he has to get the kid back. You see him develop over the next few episodes. He turns out to be someone that you don’t expect, I suppose.

You’ve done film and television. Do you approach both mediums the same way as an actor?

Sean Bean: It depends on what you’re doing really. With Paul, he’s an American. He’s a CIA agent. You go, ‘What can I find out about that? What can I do? How can I portray this as truthfully as possible,’ obviously, for the audience and then for myself.

Then there are jobs where you don’t know until you jump in. That’s quite scary, when you’re taking a big jump, a risk and you’re playing a part that you’ve never played before. That’s quite scary, but that’s what acting should be. For an actor, that’s what it should be. It shouldn’t be just easy every day. It should be a challenge. It should be exciting. It should kind of shock people, I suppose.

Since the show is called ‘Missing,’ if you were missing and you could have any fictional character look for you, who would you want it to be?

Sean Bean: [laughs] Maybe Popeye. I don’t know why.