I really enjoyed reading this big interview with actor Zahn McClarnon who plays Hanzee Dent on Fargo Season 2 and Mathias the Sheriff on the Reservation on Longmire. Both of these shows are among my very favorites....This interview from the Wall St. Journal is fabulous.....
In these last few episodes, are we seeing Hanzee self actualizing, as Kirsten Dunst’s character Peggy might say?
Yeah, I think that’s a great way to put it. Becoming actualized. Reclaiming his identity and his autonomy. Hanzee’s a pretty complicated character, and he’s gone through quite a bit. I think he just came to a boil and took a different path.
The narrator used in episode 9 says historians have puzzled for decades over why the character turns on the Gerhardts. What do you think the answer is?
I think his agenda came about gradually, starting with being a young boy adopted and oppressed and growing up in two, most likely, very dysfunctional families. I don’t know if there’s a clear reason why Hanzee went where he went, but more will be revealed in episode 10.
How much do you know about his background?
What I know for sure is only what’s in the scripts. I have my own backstory for Hanzee. He’s a local Lakota Sioux Indian from the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota. I think he was quite traumatized by growing up with the Gerhardts and being a tunnel rat in Vietnam, plus all that was going on in the 1970s in that area with the uprising of the Native American people.
Noah never confirmed it, but the name Hanzee translates as “shadow” in my language, Lakota Sioux Indian. I grew up in Nebraska and South Dakota. My mom was born and raised on the Standing Rock Reservation, then moved up to Browning, Mont., which is the Blackfeet Reservation. So I’m very familiar with that whole Interstate 29 corridor and growing up in the ‘70s both on and off the reservation.
Am I right that you’re also part Irish?
My father was Irish. He passed away about 10 years ago. He was raised up in Wisconsin and Colorado, where he met my mom in Denver. McClarnon! I’m very proud to be Irish. READ FULL INTERVIEW HERE