Jeff Daniels Made a Death-Defying Leap Between Two Galloping Horses

Jeff Daniels Made a Death-Defying Leap Between Two Galloping Horses
    -You´re doing another thing that I always dreamt of doing.
    This new series, limited series, "Godless" is a Western.
    -Yeah. -I would --
    Oh, I would love to be in a Western.
    -No, you wouldn´t. -Oh, yeah.
    No, it is like my dream to be in a Western.
    -Can you ride a horse?
    -No.
    -See, that´s not what actors say.
    -Oh, yeah, exactly. Oh, yeah, sure, I can ride a horse.
    -And that´s the problem. That´s the problem.
    And I had done "Gettysburg" years ago
    where I had to walk on a horse.
    So I knew that when they go, "Can you ride a horse?"
    and you say, "Absolutely," when you can´t, go out and learn.
    Because on "Godless," you are in the Kentucky Derby on day one.
    30 horses across, you´re going,
    and it´s only a matter of time
    before you are either thrown off or fall off.
    -I know you told me this story, and this is a true story.
    You won´t believe this. This is an amazing story.
    You´re in a scene and you´re on your horse,
    and what take is this?
    -Well, we did one, and then we had to do a second one
    because there was an actor behind us
    who was riding like this.
    [ Laughter ]
    He did. Because you -- you go --
    Scott Frank, the director, you go, "Scott, take one,
    everyone survived."
    -Yeah, let´s take this as a win. We´re good.
    -Yeah, and he goes, "Well, the guy was back there doing...
    Okay, all right, we´ll frame him out, do it again."
    They move the camera car 15 yards.
    Now we´re in, like, a different lane on the highway
    through the prairie kind of thing.
    -Now the horse doesn´t know where to really go.
    -Oh, you´re riding, riding, riding,
    and I´m riding and I´m shooting over the top of the horse
    and I´m John Wayne and I´m just --
    All the training is working. -Yeah.
    -And then there´s this sagebrush pile as big -- bigger --
    twice as big as your desk, and we´re heading right for it.
    And the horse is going to jump.
    He´s going to jump it. -Oh, no.
    We haven´t done jumping. We haven´t trained jumping.
    -No, no.
    -I got a wrangler right next to me and a wrangler --
    Mark and Ricky, and their job is to save my butt
    when things go wrong, and things are about to go wrong.
    And I get right up to the thing,
    and I´m going to jump to him, and the horse veers.
    -You´re going to jump off your horse onto another horse?
    -I´m jumping over to Mark´s horse,
    which we never rehearsed, hadn´t even talked about.
    -How could you even think about doing this?
    -Because it was either that or voom and we´re airborne.
    -They´re like, "Bye, Jeff."
    -I´m not doing that.
    -But we have photos of you doing this.
    -Yes, yes. -Look at this.
    -They chronicle every take.
    -So look how fast and all the dust coming up.
    -There´s the sagebrush. -That´s the wrangler.
    -I am now off the horse, looking at Mark,
    who rodeoed around the other side to get to me.
    -Your horse is zoned out. He has no idea what´s happening.
    -My horse was Jeff Bridges´ horse on "True Grit."
    My horse is so over me because --
    He´s making comparisons, going, "Bridges can ride.
    What´s this --
    This guy was in ´Dumb and Dumber,´ for God´s sake."
    -He´s making comparisons. -Yes.
    [ Applause ]
    -Then you actually do -- Jeff, you actually make it.
    -I survive it. Yeah.
    Now there´s a groin problem there, obviously.
    We´re popping a groin, man, yeah.
    Survived.
    -Can you explain what the show is about?
    You play a bad guy.
    -It´s a Western, good guys, bad guys.
    I play an incredibly bad guy
    who needs -- needs a team of therapists.
    He really does, and they just aren´t available in the 1880s.
    -You don´t think. Isn´t that crazy, right?
    -So he´s wandering around with a lot of mental health issues.
    But, yeah, I have a son that I´m chasing down.
    I´m also trying to parent him,
    even though I´m a complete nutcase.
    And, yeah, there´s a bunch of stuff
    where I got to teach my son how to --
    how to kill a guy, you know.
    Merry Christmas. -Yeah. Any dad would do.
    Yeah, merry Christmas. -Any dad would do.
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