BRAVE NEW WORLDS

OLIVIA WIL­LIAMS AND NI­CHOLAS PINNOCK FILL US IN ON THE SEC­OND SEA­SON OF THE COM­PLEX, MULTI-VERSE DRAMA…

Inside Soap - - INSIDE TV -

If you haven’t al­ready been watch­ing this sci-fi drama, we’d rec­om­mend that you don’t jump straight in with sea­son two when it launches this Sun­day on Starz­play on Ama­zon Prime Video – be­cause it’s a very com­pli­cated show, and you want to have some kind of clue as to what’s go­ing on.

So we’d sug­gest start­ing right from the be­gin­ning, but to give you a flavour, Howard Silk (J K Sim­mons) – an em­ployee at the UN’S Of­fice of In­ter­change – has dis­cov­ered a par­al­lel Earth, cre­ated by East Ger­man sci­en­tists in 1986, which has been di­verg­ing from our time­line ever since. With us so far? To get the low-down on sea­son two, In­side TV spoke to Olivia Wil­liams, who plays Howard’s wife Emily Silk (and, in the al­ter­na­tive world, his ex-wife Emily Bur­ton), and Ni­cholas Pinnock, who plays OI House­keep­ing agent Ian Shaw – and found out even they strug­gle to keep up with what’s go­ing on at times…

Where do we find your char­ac­ters at the start of sea­son two?

Ni­cholas Shaw has ba­si­cally been dumped by Emily, but they end up work­ing to­gether on a mis­sion. So he’s back in the thick of things, yet we also see part of his past come into the frame for the first time, and that’s the be­gin­ning of us un­der­stand­ing ex­actly why Shaw is the way he is.

Olivia We have Emily Bur­ton, who has been hu­mil­i­ated and re­moved from her work, and the co­matose Emily Silk wak­ing up, and what you quickly re­alise is that she has no rec­ol­lec­tion of her­self be­fore the ac­ci­dent. So I had this ex­tra­or­di­nary chal­lenge of play­ing three peo­ple – Emily Bur­ton, Emily Silk, who was this in­cred­i­ble dou­ble agent, and Emily Silk, a sort of 50-year-old new­born who every­one’s com­ing up to and go­ing, “Re­mem­bered any­thing yet?”

How do you man­age to keep ev­ery­thing clear in your head when you’re film­ing?

Ni­cholas We all get the scripts at the same time, and then we find our own cor­ners and we read, then we go, “Have you read episode seven?” and just dis­cuss it. It also helps that Justin’s [Marks, the show’s cre­ator] door is al­ways open!

You film in both Berlin and LA – do you find that com­pli­cates things, too?

Olivia You might walk across a court­yard and into a door in

Berlin and only en­ter the room three months later in Los An­ge­les, so you re­ally need some­one to say, “Do you re­mem­ber that freez­ing-cold day in Fe­bru­ary? That’s the en­ergy you’re com­ing into this 42C stu­dio with.”

It’s also a very se­ri­ous show – do you make some time for lev­ity be­tween takes?

Ni­cholas It’s lovely, be­cause we do take it all se­ri­ously, but there is time for lev­ity. Olivia and I have Scrab­ble bat­tles on set.

Olivia Se­ri­ous Scrab­ble bat­tles. Ac­tu­ally, there’s no com­edy in that! I think he’s win­ning…

Shaw thing: Ian thinks they should for­get the other di­men­sion ex­ists

Silk screen: Emily is lead­ing par­al­lel lives

Cos­mos con­fu­sion: If he looks be­mused, think how we feel

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