Chandler and Ben Mendelsohn play brothers on 'Bloodline' Photo by Eileen Blass, USA TODAY
Kyle Chandler and Ben Mendelsohn play brothers on “Bloodline.” (Eileen Blass, USA TODAY)

There’s nary a character more beloved than wise, patient Coach Eric Taylor from Friday Night Lights.

He was played by Kyle Chandler, who won an Emmy for his role in 2011, the same year the show ended its run. Fans, he says, do stop him all the time to profess their affection for his character.

We caught up with Chandler over breakfast, while he promoted his new Netflix series Bloodline (all 13 episodes are available today) to talk about clear eyes, full hearts and why he can’t lose.
That character didn’t become iconic until the show was over. It got very little publicity. Afterwards, it was somewhat conscious of a decision to step away from football coach characters, and TV in a sense. I’d saturated four or five years on TV, so what’s next? The films just happened to arrive. I haven’t planned anything since I was 4 years old.

Kyle Chandler on 'Friday Night Lights' Photo by Paul Drinkwater/NBC
Kyle Chandler on “Friday Night Lights” (Paul Drinkwater, NBC)

Now,  after appearing as a prickly FBI agent in Wolf of Wall Street, among other film roles, he says he’s ecstatic to be back on the small screen:
I love doing TV. Films are a different creature. With TV, there’s a family that’s formed when you do a show, and there’s a sense of security you feel working with people you love. With (Bloodline), I’m really grateful that I have a very safe atmosphere with this fantastic crew and cast, who are deep friends now. That’s a lot better than going to a film set and jumping into the middle of production and trying to pull off these feats.