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Listen: Michael C. Hall on ‘Thom Pain,’ Queer Roles and More ‘Dexter’

Michael C Hall
Joan Marcus

Michael C. Hall is always hearing about the return of “Dexter” — but not from anyone actually involved in the show.

“People on the street are always telling me about the talk of a ‘Dexter’ reboot,” said Hall of the popular Showtime series in which he starred for eight seasons. “There’ve been little percolations, but nothing that’s felt worth pursuing.” The actor is open to the idea — “it’s an amazing world, and he’s not dead” — but, he added, “I don’t have any immediate, definitive plans to do any of that.”

Hall addressed the enduring interest in “Dexter” on the latest episode of “Stagecraft,” Variety‘s theater podcast. Hall is best known for TV work in shows like “Dexter” and “Six Feet Under,” but he got his start in the theater, appearing in Broadway musicals including “Chicago” and “Cabaret.” Even after his screen career began to heat up, he made a habit of returning regularly to stage work, with gigs including recent Broadway stints in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” and “The Realistic Joneses.”

His latest theater project, “Thom Pain (based on nothing),” reunites him with playwright Will Eno, who also penned “Realistic Joneses,” in which Hall starred on Broadway with Toni Collette, Tracy Letts, and Marisa Tomei. In “Thom Pain,” being revived at Off Broadway’s Signature Theatre some 15 years after the play first made a splash in New York, Hall is the lone actor, addressing the audience in a funny, rambling, occasionally enigmatic monologue.

There’s something about Eno’s writing, Hall said on the podcast, that matches up with the way the actor’s brain works. “My wife read the script and she said, ‘This was written for you. This is how I often experience you constructing thoughts,'” he recalled. “Maybe not as artfully or concisely as Will does, but there was some sort of inherent affinity I had for his language from the beginning.”

Also on the new episode of Stagecraft, Hall talked about life after his battle with cancer, whether he’d be open to starring in another open-ended TV series, and why he didn’t hesitate to play a queer character back when he was making his breakout in “Six Feet Under,” portraying a man wrestling with his sexuality. “It didn’t really give me pause, and I didn’t take the part in spite of the fact that he was gay, but because he was gay,” Hall remembered. “The fact that he was gay, and his relationship to his sexuality, was such a fundamental part of what made him a great character. … I was more just aware the character was unique in the television landscape, and I wanted to get it right.”

New episodes of “Stagecraft” are available every Tuesday. Download and subscribe to “Stagecraft” on iTunesStitcher, or anywhere finer podcasts are dispensed. Find past episodes here and on Apple Podcasts.