With roles in Dances with Wolves, The Last of the Mohicans and HBO's Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, Wes Studi is a familiar face to fans of historical dramas. Tonight, the accomplished Cherokeecharacter actor continues his hard-nosed portrayal of Comanche leader Buffalo Hump in Part 2 of Comanche Moon (9 pm/ET, CBS; it concludes tomorrow), the Lonesome Dove prequel that traces the early years of Dove protagonists Woodrow Call and Gus McCrae.
TV Guide: You've appeared in many films about the struggles of Native Americans. What draws you to them?
I like the point of conflict, when peoplefinally come to the point [where] they have nothing else they cando but fight. It happened in just about every one of the roles thatI've played. There is quite the adrenaline rush with that.
TV Guide: Were you a fan of the original Lonesome Dove miniseries?
I was. As far as television Westerns are concerned, that is the standard. And once this one airs, I will have been in both the prequel and the sequel [Streets of Laredo]! I played [Kickapoo guide] Famous Shoes in Streets of Laredo.
TV Guide: Tonight, your character Buffalo Hump leads a spectacular raid against the town of Austin. What was his motivation?
I thinkthat he was simply acting as you would expect someone to actwhen [people] are moving in on his land. Americans weremoving into the area of Texas, what heconsidered his country.
TV Guide: Did you do much research for the role?
As much as needed, but... we as Indians know who [Buffalo Hump] was, more or less. He's part of our history. The thing about Buffalo Hump is that his name really doesn't have the meaning that it conveys whenever it's translated. It has much more to do with his sexual prowess. That's fact among Comanches. [Laughs]
Go behind the scenes of Comanche Moon with clips in our Online Video Guide.
Get the exclusive scoop on the seventh season of American Idol in the new issue of TV Guide, on newsstands now. Plus: Can Dr. Phil save Britney? Try four risk-free issues of TV Guide now!
Send your comments on this Q&A to email@example.com.