Da Vinci’s Demons set for an epic final season
We quiz Tom Riley as the final season of Da Vinci’s Demons approaches.
“No more Renaissance MacGyver,” says Da Vinci’s Demons star Tom Riley. “This year is richer, deeper and massive.” As Da Vinci’s Demons enters its final season Riley assures us the show is going out on a high. With a new showrunner on board – John Shiban, a producer with The X- Files and Breaking Bad on his CV – the new season is, says Riley, “the best stuff we’ve done. It’s so much richer and so much more characterful. It’s certainly smarter than it was.”
A fanciful retelling of the early life of Leonard Da Vinci set against the political machinations of Renaissance Italy, the show spent two seasons under the guidance of David S Goyer ( The Dark Knight, Man Of Steel) and had an unashamed comic book tone. But, says Riley, “John Shiban came on board and just loved the potential of the show which he didn’t feel was being explored. That’s a completely fair way of judging the first two seasons. We were going for a bombastic, exciting adventure, and it was very entertaining. John was adamant that we could delve deeper into the characters. It’s still an exciting adventure show, but it’s very much the characters driving the plot rather than the other way around.”
Any worries this might mean less action are dispelled when we meet the design team on set. “No. We’re having more fun,” one of them enthuses. “It starts off with such a huge opener that for us has been another step up. We’ve built streets then had tanks rolling along them blowing them up.”
The tank, which looks like a large Renaissance Dalek, is one of Da Vinci’s own designs, brought to life by Ottoman invaders. Leonardo having his own inventions turned against him will be a theme of the season, says Riley. Another theme of the season is the “pleasure palace” – a new set that the cast and crew are all gushing about. It’s exactly what it sounds like – a den of iniquity with some extraordinary detailing. “Did you notice the staircase looks like a vagina?” asks our guide. Riley is later unsurprised to learn the designers were eager to give us a tour of the place. “If you can spend enough time working out how to turn erections into door handles you’re gonna want to show it off.”
Riley tells us that knowing the show was ending has actually had a positive effect on the season. He promises resolution for all the characters and storylines and definitely “No cliffhanger!” And there was no skimping: “When we knew it was ending we were throwing money at the final episode to make it the best it could possibly be.
It’s the best stuff we’ve done. It’s certainly smarter than it was
I thought that was very big of Starz to be honest. It will pay back the audience’s investment.”
He also reveals that the main cast were all allowed to take home a prop as a souvenir. “Everybody picked something that meant something to them. If I tell you what I chose it would be a spoiler because it appears in the final episode. It think it will be obvious, though, when you see it.”
But did anybody decide they wanted a door handle in the shape of an erection?
The third and final season of Da Vinci’s Demons airs from 25 October on Fox.
“We are the knights who say Ni!”
“What do you mean, did I put out the fire? I thought you were!”
don ’ t quote me
“I’ve got no sha me abo ut my MySpace photos , es peciall y the one of me in my under pants which is a glorio us photo of a man in his nat ural habitat .” Don’t know what Tom Hardy is talking about? We urge you to google “Tom Hardy MySpace”.
Catwalk trends this season include knee- high boots and all- over brocade.
The design team have had fun with Da Vinci’s inventions in the final series.