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Roy Dupuis Feb. 17 TV Guide Article "Roy Story"
"With his mission on spy thriller La Femme Nikitacoming to an end, Roy Dupuis patiently awaits his next assignment. Roy Dupuis makes people mad. Some are mad about the boy: devotees of the French-Canadian actor, who plays Michael, the mysterious secret agent on USA's action-espionage series La Femme Nikita. Others are mad at him: specifically, Nikita producers, who wish he would move to Los Angeles to follow in the footstops of fellow Canadians Jim Carrey and Mike Myers and pursue the career of a movie star. The 37-year old Dupuis does desire a bigger screen presence(he's done some critically acclaimed French-language movies), but he refuses to compormise his happiness by relocation to L.A. He even declined a chance to audition for the heedless rock star, played by Billy Crudup, in 'Almost Famous.' Instead, Dupuis is happy to stay in his farmhouse in the Montreal area, where he lives with his girlfriend, Canadian actress


Celine Bonnier, and continue to be picky about future roles. 'If there's an interesting movie that comes up, that I find important, I will certainly have a look at it,' he says.
Last summer, Dupuis was just getting used to being home following the abrupt ending of Nikita which was filmed in Toronto, when he got the call that the network wanted to produce eight more episodes of the series. Thanks to the combination of a massive fan campaign and USA's loss of wrestling, Nikita(Sundays through March 4, 10P.M./ET) returned last month. But since the network wanted to concentrate more on Nikita's quest to figure out who her real father is than on her relationship with Michael, Dupuis was asked to appear in only the last two episodes. (He's also directing the February 18 installment.) 'It was weird playing Michael again,' the hazel-eyed actor says. 'I had already mourned him, so it was kind of hard to believe in him.'
Believers in Roy Dupuis, however, are legion. 'He's probably the biggest star in his age range in Quebec,' says Nikita producer Jamie Paul Rock. Peta Wilson, who plays Nikita, is also a staunch admirer. 'I call Him Royal,'" she says with a laugh. 'he's very strong, very dominant. There have been a couple of times when I couldn't deal with things, and he'd take my hand, look straight in my eyes and ground me again.'
Dupuis' strength was forged in the French-speaking regions of Quebec and Ontario. The second of three children of Ryna, a piano teacher, and Roy, a meat salesman, he moved to Montreal with his mother at 14, when his parents separated. It was there that a movie about the French playwright Moliere changed the would-be scientist's career direction: He exchanged his physics class for one in theatre.
A few years later, the novice actor gained entrance to the prestigious National Theatre School of Canada. After establishing himself in French-language theater, movies and TV, he got his first important English-language break playing the Dionne quintuplets' hapless father in the 1994 CBS miniseries Million Dollar Babies. In 1997, his role in La Femme Nikita increased his fan base exponentially. But while co-workers say he's always gracious, the actor has never been comfortable with all the attention. 'I don't think he sees himself as a sex symbol,' says Rock. 'He's really proud of his art, and he's really good at it.'
Plus, he's "incredibly sexy," says former Nikita supervising producer Peter Lenkov. 'If he put 10 percent of his time into promoting himself, he'd be big.' Executive consultant Joel Surnow, who cast Dupuis in Nikita, describes him as the 'best kept secret. Roy is an unusual blend of male action machismo and a vulnerable romantic-a combination of Mel Gibson and Brad Pitt. Roy wants to stay in Quebec, but he'll leave soon. He'll have no choice.'"-Ileane Rudolph


From TV GUIDE Vol. 49 No. 7 Feb 17, 2001, issue #2499

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