There are times when Stanley Tucci seems to be everywhere, and this is one of them. In August, the ubiquitous character actor played the elegant Paul Child, husband to Meryl Streep's dotty Julia Child, in "Julie & Julia" (out on DVD this week). In September, he starred with Patricia Clarkson in the romantic drama "Blind Date," which he directed and co-wrote. And on Friday, he switches gears to portray a child murderer in Peter Jackson's thriller "The Lovely Bones."

Tucci, 49, lost his wife, Kate, to cancer in May and is now raising three children on his own. He found time last week to speak about his life-changing year and plans for the future.

 

Have you been able to enjoy your success?

For me, it's all about logistics. I don't have my wife, so I have to organize my children's schedules, and me being away. Plus, there's only one person with whom I want to share all this. And one of the reasons all this stuff is happening to me is because of my wife. She was the most supportive person ever.

 

You said you researched Paul Child for "Julie & Julia." Is there any research you can do for a role like the one in "The Lovely Bones"?

Unfortunately, yes. All you have to do is turn on the television and there's a show on about a serial killer - there's probably three on at once. There are documentaries. Looking at photographs on the Internet of these guys, to piece together what they might look like. I could only do it in small increments, maybe an hour.

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Tell me about the animated series you're working on with Steve Buscemi.