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Mr. Robot's Rami Malek explains how HBO's The Pacific prepared him for darker roles

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Still credits the HBO series for his development

Most people were introduced to Rami Malek through USA's Golden Globe winning series Mr. Robot, but the actor said that without working on Steven Spielberg's The Pacific, he never would have learned how to separate himself from his character and become a better actor.

Malek talked about his time working on the World War II mini-series during a Hollywood Reporters roundtable, and said that one of the most valuable skills he learned was how to distance himself from his character. He said that walking around the set in character and never separating himself from his character led to some pretty intense mental anguish during and after filming. It wasn't until he learned techniques to separate himself from his character that he was able to enjoy his job and take on complex roles, like Elliot in Mr. Robot.

Even with the mental separation, however, Malek said he didn't know how to handle being on a show that become as adored and popular as quickly as Mr. Robot did. The only way to deal with the stress of trying to please fans, on top of portraying such a complicated character, was to continue working.

"The only thing on my mind is season two. We have to do season two," Malek said. "I can't stop working."

Malek's portrayal of the white hat hacker turned activist secured him both critical praise and attention from fans. In the second season, Elliot will go into even darker places as he discovers more about his father and tries to evade the FBI following the events of his major takedown of America's financial sector.

Mr. Robot returns July 13 at 9 p.m. ET on USA.