With the 3rd season of Syfy’s BEING HUMAN underway, we have seen that werewolf curse has had an unexpected role to play this season now that Josh has been curse and Nora remains cursed. In a recent conference call, co-stars Sam Huntington and Kristen Hager talked about the strain this new development brings into the lives of Josh and Nora, and what is like having their roles reversed on the show.
Kristen, do you feel different now that you’re considered part of the main cast or is it just more work for you or?
KRISTEN: Yes, honestly, I feel the same. It does mean more days on set, which I’m all for. So I feel the same. Maybe slightly more included. But for the most part, exactly the same.
SAM: She’s certainly acting more important. She’s really taking it to the next level.
KRISTEN: Yes. It’s gone right to my head. I don’t even talk to anyone on set anymore. (Laughs)
SAM: Except to yell and make requests that are wild, crazy stuff.
Sam, are you happy getting to play a more normal Josh? Or are you looking forward to going back to being a werewolf?
SAM: What’s cool about Josh as a character is, whether or not he’s a werewolf, he’s a really layered guy. He’s a really dynamic character. The werewolf thing certainly adds a huge other layer, but the character itself is really rich. So for me it doesn’t change much other than feeling slightly like I’m on the outside looking in.
KRISTEN: I’ve taken your place.
SAM: Yes, exactly. Kristen has now taken my place, and she’s making it known, by the way. As I was playing it, the character becomes increasingly more and more feeling like he’s left out and I was oddly feeling the same way as an actor. All my wonderful costars get to do this fun stuff and now I’m looking in through the window like the Ghost of Christmas Past.
Sam, do you and Meaghan have like a former supernatural character rehab now? Do you have to help each other out?
SAM: (Laughs) Yes, we formed a support group and it’s been really helpful. There’re only two of us, so it’s small. But I feel like we’ll build as we look to the supernatural thing and I feel like we could really help people out. I feel like maybe. So just give it some time. No, to be honest though, I do now sympathize more with Meaghan in the first 2 seasons with her being a ghost and not being able to touch anyone, and all the restrictions that were on her. I kind of felt similarly once I got cured of my werewolfism. So I definitely felt Meaghan Rath’s pain, for sure.
Last season everyone pretty much had their own separate storylines but it looks like this season you’re really getting everyone back together. Can you talk about how that’s been?
KRISTEN: Yes, like we spent some time talking recently, but I think that this season we’ve really gone back to what worked so well in Season 1 with the roommates and keeping everyone’s storylines connected and that camaraderie between everyone. The writers did a fantastic job this season in bringing that back. So I think everyone’s been really excited about that because we always have the most fun on set when we’re all there together.
SAM: And it was a goal for the writers to put us all back together because it was their favorite thing to write too. It’s light and it’s fun and we all work pretty well together.
What are maybe some of the new acting challenges with your respective roles this year?
KRISTEN: Acting challenges? Every episode always brings with it a new set of challenges. I don’t know. I feel like this year Nora more subdued. As for new challenges, I don’t know specifically that anything stood out this year as being particularly more difficult.
SAM: You dealing with Leah was a new thing, right?
KRISTEN: Yes, just a new threat to the character. I mean, as an actor, I don’t know if it was more challenge.
SAM: I would say for me, it was honestly of just a feeling of kind of being left out, feeling left out of the party. That was kind of weird and totally unexpected, by the way. I did not expect to feel that way. It was such a surprise to me when and it didn’t really hit me until we were on set shooting and I was like, “Oh, this is kind of weird, like I’m not one of the gang anymore.” So that was kind of an interesting different challenge I guess. KRISTEN: Nora has her challenges. I guess so obviously like the longer days, but I love my job. This is one of my favorite jobs I ever had, so I don’t even mind the long hours.
SAM: She’s the best too. Having her on set is so much fun. I always want more of Kristen. And like even in previous seasons when I watched an episode and she’s not in it, and it’ll take me a second, and I be, like, “Something’s missing…”
Sam Witwer has said he would have Aiden and Josh or Nora change places, “Because being a werewolf was much easier.” How would you respond to that?
KRISTEN: He said being a werewolf is easier than being a vampire?
SAM: I think Witwer is full of shit, man.
KRISTEN: He hasn’t walked a day in our shoes. How does he know?
SAM: Well, I think probably what he’s referring to is the fact that Aidan does have it pretty rough just because he’s done so much damage in his past. So it’s his own damned fault.
KRISTEN: Yes, exactly.
SAM: You know what I mean? He’s dug his own grave, if you will. But, I guess the other thing you could say is werewolves I guess are alive. They’re alive. They have blood moving through their veins so, there’s that. But I think really it all depends on the particular supernatural-being, like Josh.
KRISTEN: I was going to say, I think it’s a case-by-case.
SAM: I think Josh tortures himself. Josh hates what he is and that’s something that’s hard to live with. Nora, on the other hand, just like loves it.
KRISTEN: Of course. She went through her phase where she absolutely loved it then, and then by the end of Season 2, she’d seen the very dark side of what this newfound aggression means and the consequences that come with that. So it scares her and so by the end of Season 2, she’s very much questioning what this is and whether this is what she wanted and is really trying to grasp any sense of humanity that’s left inside of her. So it’s definitely a daily struggle with her too and Season 3 brings a whole new set of obstacles and struggles comes with being a wolf.
What do we have to look forward to this season from your characters and what kind of a journey to do you see them on?
KRISTEN: I feel Season 3 definitely starts a year and a half after Season 2 and Josh and Nora have had a lot of time, just the two of them and a lot of time to work on their relationships. So Season 3 definitely sees Josh and Nora in a much better place than they’ve been in any of the seasons thus far. I feel like they’ll have very human problems still that they’ll have to deal with day-to-day in their relationships this season, which is nice.
SAM: Yes, I mean, we went to some really dark places in Season 2 and it’s not that we don’t go to dramatic places in Season 3, we do. But I think that a lot of them are more grounded and relatable, and I think that that’s something that people are going to really enjoy. There’s a lot more levity this year, simply because all of us are back together again. If you will, the band is back together. That was not only fun to shoot, but I think it really is going to come across as being fun to watch I hope and so I think that’s it’s our best season yet. I think we all agree, it’s our best season yet.
KRISTEN: I agree. You’ll see with the new characters an exciting energy that wasn’t there before. But it’s like a very newness and freshness to the season this year.
SAM: Yes, agreed.
Do we see Nora embracing the wolf more and kind of becoming more an advanced wolf in a shorter time span than what Josh went through?
KRISTEN: Definitely. I feel like with Nora, she just has so much baggage in her past and gone through so many hardships, it’s like she was a victim honestly for so long that at first being a wolf, while it was scary, but then right away this newfound sense of power that she felt inside. It’s very comfortable in her skin. And right away that newfound strength was something that she embraced. Then obviously by the end of Season 2, it had gone so far that it was something that began to terrify her because she saw what she was capable of, because you really have no control when you’re the wolf. So the energy was she was really trying to hold onto any semblance of humanity that was still left inside of her. I really tried to relate to that. So by Season 3 a year and a half has passed so I feel like Nora just found a very nice balance between really being able to live her life as much as she can as a human being for 29-30 days a year and on the full moon going and being the wolf and then returning back to a very human life. That’s where we are at the beginning of Season 3 and obviously things will come up, more wolves will come into town , which will then instill that sort of wolf urges in her once again. That’s always going to be a struggle for her, the balance of what: Do I love this? Do I hate this?
Does the fact that you kind of reached the end game, does everyone still feel like square pegs in round holes?
SAM: Sally’s an interesting entity unto herself. Because of all intents and purposes, she’s still very much a supernatural being. But I think Josh has that kind of feeling like he’s pure, but he still wants to be one of the gang. So he’s feeling like square peg in a round hole and especially with Nora. He’s constantly just think, “I’m still part of this. I’m supernatural too.” And she’s like, “No, but you’re not. You’re my boyfriend and I love you but you should embrace the fact that you’ve gotten your wish.”
KRISTEN: Have your life back.
SAM: I think it’s unexpected how he reacts to his humanity to get his life back or his curing himself of the curse. I think he probably expected himself to be elated and relieved and instead he’s feeling like an outsider. Because at the end of the day, he’s still in that world. He’s still there, his friend, his girlfriend, the people he surrounds himself with are still these supernatural beings, but he’s not. But it’s really cool. It’s fun to play. It’s a really interesting thing.
What’s it been like for you to play that and to see it evolve from Point A to where you are right now?
KRISTEN: It’s been great. I mean, as I always say, as a viewer, I love watching the Josh and Nora relationship. The writers give us fantastic stuff to work with and they have right from the very beginning, very challenging stuff, which is always great as an actor. They keep delivering fantastic stuff for us to do. So we haven’t seen the end of the Josh and Nora journey for sure. But I can definitely say that by Season 3, as I have been saying, our relationship is in a much more solid and happier place than it’s been the past two seasons.
It seems like the theme “be careful what you wish for” might not be exactly what any of them needs or wants.
SAM: That’s it. I mean, that’s the tagline for the season. It’s “be careful what you wish for” and it holds true for all of us because we all did kind of what we had to do to get what we wanted, and it all comes with a price. With Josh lifting the curse, he was never really out to lift it for himself; he was really out to lift it for Nora. So it’s totally bittersweet. It’s not what he wanted or expected and, with all the characters once Aidan is free, he arrived in a world that is vastly different than the one that he left when he was buried. It’s dangerous and it’s scary and it’s new and he has to kind of learn how to live in it. So that’s a huge catch for him. And that’s a very appropriate theme and one line kind of summation of the season.
Could you talk about the whole dynamic in the house now that Nora has moved in?
KRISTEN: Josh and Nora have been living there, by themselves, for a year and a half; so obviously their goal has been to bring back Sally and Aidan. But then once Sally and Aidan get back, then we’d all sort of figure out how to live with each other. I feel that what the audience will come to see is that Aidan and Nora have the hardest time with that dynamic because we had our moments in Season 2 where they butted heads. That carried over into Season 3. So I think it’s safe to say that there’ll be a few conflicting moments between Nora and Aidan this season.
SAM: I was just bummed out that Nora didn’t redecorate Josh and Nora’s room.
KRISTEN: Josh is very protective of his belongings.
SAM: Very protective. He must be because none of them left. But it’s good news all around and that Nora gets more screen time. She’s a fun character. And she and Josh are amazing together. It’s good stuff.
What do you guys think is keeping Josh and Nora together at this point? Is it pure love or is there like a sort of codependence there?
SAM: I think it’s both of those things, actually.
KRISTEN: Yes. Like hardships bring people together or tears them apart and, in their case, it brought them together. I feel like now we’re stronger than ever because of all the stuff that we’ve been through together.
Do we see some of Josh and Nora’s past come back to haunt them in the third season?
KRISTEN: Absolutely. Definitely. Speaking for Nora, that’s a huge arm for her this season. We find out that she went off around the world. You find out where she went and what happened and all the consequences from that really bubble up to the surface in Season 3.
SAM: Which is cool in my opinion because a lot of the times when you have a fantasy based show, it’s so easy to gloss over the things that the characters do and the negative things, it’s easy just to forget about them. So I was really happy that the writers were like, “No, no, no. You people are definitely going to pay for what they did.” And it’s really cool. It’s really, really cool. They did a wonderful job with really ramping up the danger and the tension.
KRISTEN: It adds to the whole humanity of the show. We talk over and over again about it’s supernatural, but these are human beings and the way we deal with all the situations on the show is: How would any of you deal with it? How would any human deal with that? So again, that’s a great aspect to the show is that everyone has to pay for what they do.
Who were some of your favorite guest starts from Season 3 to work with?
SAM: Amy Aquino plays just a wonderful character named Donna. She is so talented and so wonderful and so easy going. She’s brought so much to the table, brought a newness and a freshness to the table that was so cool. Right of the bat, Episode 1, so it really kicks it off in a neat way. She also just came so prepared and cared so much. That is so great to see when someone comes in a just cares about the show and cares about wanting to do a good job and do the show justice and not let anybody down. It’s just really refreshing and wonderful. So she stands out in my mind for sure.
KRISTEN: Yes, Amy was fantastic. I completely agree with everything Sam is saying. Then a new character that Nora definitely has a very interesting relationship with through the whole season as Xander Berkeley. He plays Liam, the purebred twins, Connor and Brent from last season, he’s their father. And he comes back. In Episode 2, he arrives and he’s looking for answers because he hasn’t seen or heard from his children in over a year. So that’s an interesting storyline with him, and he was great to work with. Fantastic bad guy. Really good at his job. Knew what he was doing. And we had some great scenes together.
Can you talk about the process you have to go through in a werewolf transformation sequence?
SAM: It’s crazy. Depending on — like okay, so you’re talking about the really excruciating ones, right? You’re talking about the ones that are really the sons of bitches. It depends on so there’re different applications.
KRISTEN: Yes, like there’s four stages of the werewolf.
SAM: Yes. You have your chest piece, you have your back piece, which those are the real beasts, if you will. Those are the real toughies because they take the longest to apply and then you have to paint them in. And then there’s a face application. Have ever had that, Kristen?
KRISTEN: I haven’t had the face, no.
SAM: It sucks. It’s not super fun. So that’s a whole thing. Then you have your hands which, believe it or not, are just the claws. They’re the easiest to apply, but they’re perhaps the most annoying. It’s hard to get them off . The makeup is a real bitch. And also when you put it all on, I’d say it takes six, seven hours, like when you put it all on in stages. It’s pretty intense. And then beyond that once you get into it, you have to perform in it — and it’s not just performing, it’s screaming and wailing and straining and acting like you’re in the most physical pain of your life and so that unto itself is exhausting. But the good news is — the makeup is so uncomfortable that it’s really hard not to be aware of it — so it actually helps kind of get you there. So I guess that’s good. But despite all that, it’s still a great job. It’s the best job. I’ll always say, as an actor, like when you’re a young person you dream of being an actor in TV and movies. You’re not saying, “Oh, I really want to play an accountant.” You’re like, “I want to play a friggen’ superhero or I want to play a monster.” Anything that’s visceral and fun and interesting. So I feel like we’re really lucky to have these jobs.
To see more of the third season of BEING HUMAN, be sure to tune in Mondays at 9:00 p.m. on Syfy. What is a supernatural being to do once given their humanity back, does the lure of the other-side of life prove too tempting to ignore?
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