Exclusive Interview: The Mentalist’s Jack Plotnick Talks Playing Brett Partridge, Being A Red John Suspect & Flies

The Mentalist season 6 is slated to premiere this coming Sunday and if you know anything about yours truly, I am VERY excited to see how it will pan out especially since we know that the Red John saga is coming to an end.

With so many exciting news & spoilers coming out, we are very fortunate here at TV Equals to have gotten the fantastic honor and opportunity to chat with someone who knows a little bit about what is coming this season, Jack Plotnick who plays Brett Partridge, one of the Red John suspects.

In our chat, Jack talked about been playing Brett Partridge since the pilot episode, working on the season 6 premiere and more. Check out what he had to say below and don’t miss him in the season 6 premiere episode of The Mentalist this Sunday September 29 at 10 pm on CBS.

I’m such a fan of your character. Isn’t this an exciting season?

Jack Plotnick: I’ll say, definitely very exciting.

You’ve been with this show from the pilot onward. What’s that adventure been like for you?

Jack Plotnick: Well it was really cool to have been part of the pilot because I was there when all those actors were just meeting each other, and actually because I was in the pilot episode, I even went with them to meet an actual, I think he was, an FBI agent to discuss how they do what they do. I really felt like I was part of the family because I was there when they were all just meeting each other, getting to know each other. That feeling really continued every time I would go to the set. Everybody remembered me and welcomed me in a really warm fashion. So it’s always been a wonderful place to return to, and I have some really wonderful memories along the way. It’s been fun to get to each appearance to learn more and more about my character and have him go from just getting to know him better…and yeah.

How did you react when you found out that your character was going to be on the list of seven suspects?

Jack Plotnick: I was incredibly excited. I had heard a rumor that it was possible, and I just thought that was wonderful and couldn’t wait to find out if it was really going to happen or not, and then when I found out it was happening, it was just so cool. It was really exciting. I love the way that it was presented on the episode. I think the way those pictures come down like that was so cool, and getting to be the last photo was especially chilling. So that was a lot of fun.

Let’s say you turn out to be Red John, is there something about your character that you would’ve liked to incorporate from the get go, or are you fine with not having known the whole time?

Jack Plotnick: Well, I played it like I was Red John from the beginning.

You’re actually in the premiere episode of season six. What can you tease about that episode? There’s a photo that’s out where you’re with Jane and Lisbon on a beach.

Jack Plotnick: That beach was next to the Salton Sea. There was a tremendous amount of flies in the air. So what I recommend watching is how many times the flies actually land on our faces while we’re trying to act. It was really one of the most difficult things I’ve had to deal with as an actor, staying in character while flies land on your face. It was incredible because when we would sit down, I remember I saw Robin [Tunney], she was sitting there and there were like sixteen flies on her leg and there’s nothing you can do about it. Simon [Baker] came over and just swatted them away, but ten seconds later they’re right back again. What I loved is that Simon and Robin had such a wonderful sense of humor about it. They’re such good sports, and nobody ever got upset. Simon certainly teased the location manager about it because on top of the flies, the smell was just excruciatingly terrible.

The Mentalist Season 6 Premiere The Desert Rose (3)

Is there a difference in how you approach Brett Partridge now as compared to the beginning?

Jack Plotnick: No. I always approached it like Red John because that seemed appropriate.

The character has always been super specific, to the point that Patrick Jane was irked by him from the get go. Was that in the script, or did you add that in?

Jack Plotnick: The creepiness was in the script. However, in the pilot, Simon adlibbed an extra line and it’s been a while since I’ve watched that scene, but that final line where he says – shoot – on his exit, he added an You’re ghoulish.’ He says, ‘You’re ghoul,’ and then he said something else. The point is that he added and he definitely really enjoyed that aspect and played it up even more. But it was written in the script. That’s kind of what they wanted from the character, the idea that he’s a little too into the…he’s always been ultra fascinated by the different acts that Red John does and by the violence. It doesn’t even matter if it’s Red John. I think he just seems a little too into gore.

What can you tease beyond the premiere for this season for your character this season?

Jack Plotnick: I’ve been very busy and we all worked really hard to make this season awesome and exciting, and that I can’t wait for the audience to see it. I can’t really say anything past that.

Do you have any other upcoming projects you can talk about?

Jack Plotnick: Oh, yes. I directed a feature film called ‘Space Station 76‘ that stars Patrick Wilson, Liv Tyler and Matt Bomer and Jerry O’Connell. We hope that will be in festivals and theaters next year. It takes place in the future as we had imagined it in the 1970’s and it’s a dark comedy, and it’s sort of like ‘Space 1999’ meets ‘The Brady Bunch’ in space.

That’s been a big part of my life in the last year, and also a musical I co-wrote called ‘Disaster!’ It’s going to be premiering off Broadway next month and people in New York can see that. It’s a 1970’s disaster movie musical with all hit songs from the ’70’s. They can find that on Facebook. The website is disastermusical.com and I’m really, really proud of that. That’s premiering in October.

If you could guest star on any TV show, which one would it be?

Jack Plotnick: Oh, gosh, well for me there’s no question. For me it has to be ‘The Love Boat.’ I’ve got to be on ‘The Love Boat.’ I’ve got to walk in front of the blue screen and go up on the deck with that blue screen and sky, and I was to have a drink with Gofer. I want to sit at the captain’s table. I want my character and Julie to have some torrid affair. Yeah, that’s what it’s going to be.

(Top Photo Credit: www.BradenMoranPhotography.com )