Mykelti Williamson Talks Justified Season 5 finale and the uncertain future of Ellstin Limehouse
Justified Season 3 continues tonight with Episode 3.10: Measures, which will further complicate the relationship between US Marshall Raylan Givens Timothy Olyphant) and Ellstin Limehouse (Mykelti Williamson), a butcher in Noble's Holler who handles money for various nefarious individuals throughout Harlan county. As the season comes to an end with Episode 3.12: Slaughterhouse on April 10th, we will learn more about Limehouse's ties to the Givens' family tree. We caught up with Mykelti Williamson to chat about the remainder of Justified's intense season, and to find out where his fate resides in terms of Justified Season 4.
Guess what? Mykelti doesn't know if Limehouse lives or dies, and will only learn of his fate as we, the audience, do at home. Here is our conversation.
What can you tell us about this past relationship between Helen and Limehouse?
Mykelti Williamson: Limehouse actually looked out for her. He alludes to the fact that there was more to the relationship. The final analysis? He just looked out for her. Raylan's dad was really jealous of Limehouse spending so much time with his wife. But the man used to beat his wife. That's why Limehouse took care of her. She was allowed to stay in the black community. Because the black community would take care of her. Limehouse ended up beating Raylan's dad almost to death, when Limehouse was a young man. The only thing that stopped him from going all the way was that he looked up, and he saw the young Raylan Givens Watching. Limehouse backed off, and he let Arlo live.
How will this information affect the final showdown between Raylan and Limehouse?
Mykelti Williamson: It affects things. That's all I can tell you. It does affect the impending relationship between Limehouse and Raylan Givens. It affects the relationship tremendously. You'll have to watch and see how that all unfolds. Let's just say...It ain't purdy!
Does Limehouse make it out of the season finale alive?
Mykelti Williamson: I don't know if Limehouse is coming back or not. I have no idea. The way we finished the last episode? There are a few people that we don't know if they are coming back or not. There were a few alternate ways we shot some of those scenes. A character...It could be their demise! Or it could surprise us all, and the character will come back next season. None of us know.
What about Boyd and Limeouse? Where is their relationship at, heading into this upcoming finale?
Mykelti Williamson: It is a cantankerous relationship. They are like fire and gasoline, those two guys. Limehouse and Boyd Crowder. Without being a spoiler, you just have to watch and see it unfold. But it is very dangerous, this relationship. There is an illusion of trust. But both characters feel like they are being lied to. That's all I will give you.
Were you given Limehouse's backstory upfront, or have you only been able to discover this man as we have, from script to script...
Mykelti Williamson: Graham Yost did come to me with some backstory. Which helped out a lot. As I went forward, I picked the brains of all the writers on the show. Because they've all been down to Kentucky. They've seen the different communities that this show is based on. They are able to tell me about these way out, bizarre characters. I find a way to infuse what they tell me into the stories. There were a lot of dangerous people I grew up around, that I didn't really like, but I had to get along with. Because my parents told me to never let on that I didn't like these guys. You speak, and then you stay clear. I am bringing a lot of that stuff to it too. That is what you are seeing every Tuesday night.
I don't know if you've seen these 'collapse of the American dollar' ads that run late at night, sometimes during the show. It seems to me, Limehouse might be the type of person to create his own currency, to keep his community going. How far away is Ellstin from doing just that?
Mykelti Williamson: Limehouse is the matriarch of his community. I don't know that he would go as far as printing his own money. He is a very resourceful man. And he will do whatever it takes to survive. This community has survived for more than one hundred and seventy five years. It is a self-contained unit. He feels like it could go on into infinity.
I've heard from a couple of other cast members that once they saw how scary Limehouse is, shrimp jokes were completely off the table. Is that true?
Mykelti Williamson: They are professionals. Drunk people make shrimp jokes all the time. But we are at work, so it never comes up. No...The thing is, not all actors are fortunate enough to be in my position, where you are in one of the top one hundred movies ever made on earth. So it is iconic. I meet people, and they are trembling and shaking, because Forrest Gump is one of their favorite movies. So, I guess the one thing I want to give back is...I have my own seasoning. I have my own barbeque sauce and rub, its called "Mykelti Williamson's Bubba Style". In the next couple of weeks, you'll be able to go onto my website, which is bubbastyle.net, were we have a coming soon page...You will be able to buy your own sauce and do this thing Bubba style!