For Season 2, the Syfy series Bitten, based on the best-selling urban fantasy series Women of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong, has upped the action, gore and sexiness, as Elena Michaels (Laura Vandervoort), the only female werewolf in the world, and her Pack have been reluctantly forced to join forces with a trio of witches to defeat a mysterious and sociopathic enemy that is determined to take over the Otherworld.
During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, actor Steve Lund (“Nick Sorrentino”) talked about how tight this ensemble is, both on and off screen, what he’s most enjoyed about his character’s arc, the relationship between Nick and his Pack leader Jeremy (Greg Bryk), balancing the political with the personal, exploring the romance between Nick and Paige (Tommie-Amber Pirie), how much he enjoyed the added female energy this season, and how much he enjoyed the fight scenes in the season finale. Be aware that there are some spoilers.
Collider: As a cast, you guys clearly formed a bond over the first season. How do you think that strengthened and enriched things even further, for your performances this season?
STEVE LUND: That is the comment that we get, all the time, which is such a nice note to hear. It makes our job so much easier, and when people recognize that, it gives us a lot of faith in what we’re doing. We were very lucky to really get alone, right off the bat. All of us, across the board, really just love each other. We’re all very different and come from different backgrounds and bring different things to the table, but we’re able to really rally behind this one common goal and become a great family. In a lot of the situations that we deal with, there are very real emotions that we’re going through and I think that translates on screen, really well. For instance, Laura [Vandervoort] is someone that we have a real brother-sister, father-daughter relationship with. We all care so deeply for her and her well-being. While filming, she’s put through the ringer, she’s constantly tested, and her limits are being stretched, and how much we care about her is a very real thing.
Nick was a lot more carefree and unfocused when we first met him, and now he seems to be much more secure with what he wants within the Pack now. What have you most enjoyed about playing that personal growth with the character?
LUND: It’s always nice when, as an actor, you’re given an arc and a journey to undergo. That was really great, for me to work on, simultaneously with my personal life. I’m a pretty baby actor, so given all of those challenges, I was growing, very much, at the same time as the character. It became very applicable to me to go through this with my character, and it was so much fun to do. I feel like I’ve grown up a lot, in the last two years, because I’ve had this responsibility bestowed upon me doing so on screen. It’s been a very great transition.
What was it like to explore the relationship between Nick and Jeremy, this season, especially as Nick stepped up more and could really be relied on?
LUND: Jeremy is now the father figure in Nick’s life. He’s the biggest male influence that he has, now that his father is gone, which is great. He’s a wonderful man, on and off screen. And my relationship with Greg Bryk is a very special bond. I just found such a great connection with him that it’s been very educational and very nurturing. And with Jeremy, Nick has to absorb everything that he can from him and apply it in the best way that he can, for the betterment of the Pack. Nick’s father put the Pack first, and now it’s time for him to do the same, as best as he can. Jeremy and Nick have become a little bit more of a tag-team than he is with some other characters. That’s been a cool little journey for me.
This season really got a lot deeper into the wolf politics. Did you enjoy having that balance between the political and the personal?
LUND: Yeah, it was really neat. It was cool to bring it to a global scale. It was the UN of the werewolf packs. And it was a cool contrast because while all of this drama was going on, we had to keep that in the front of our minds. Even with all of this very emotional stuff happening and there were all of these very dire circumstances, we couldn’t lose track of the fact that there are requirements that need to be met, on top of all of that. We’re working against a clock, so it just increases the stakes. It also just introduced a lot of great characters to the storyline.
As an actor, do you enjoy having so many things thrown at your character, or do you wish you could have an episode where they all just have a really nice, relaxing day?
LUND: Yeah, it would be great to do a Christmas special, or something like that, where we have a musical number or the Pack goes for a yoga retreat. But, it’s cool. It’s fun that they always keep us on our toes. We’re always challenged. We always have shit thrown in our face and have to react. It’s great to just be knocked on your ass and have to scramble to recover. I like that stuff a lot. I like a challenge, and I like the drama of it all. I like taking on as much as I can because then it brings about an accurate depiction of life. That’s exactly what it’s like. It’s endless. You can barely get a spare moment to yourself to just relax. So, it makes it very authentic, in that way.
How was it for you to play the dynamic between the witches and the wolves, and to expand the supernatural world, in that way?
LUND: We thought we were the only beings, and now there are all of these witches out there. It’s something that we’ve never experienced before. As a tonal thing for this show, it’s really given it a darker side. We were able to delve into a lot of that, which has made for very good television. It has increased the special effects. It’s fun to play in that world because it’s scary and it makes you very vulnerable. It’s a power that we have no control over. It was fun to watch the Pack squirm and scramble to figure it all out.
Because they come from such different worlds, what do you think it is that drew Nick to Paige?
LUND: The immediate attraction that Nick had to Paige was when he was knocked down a peg. When we’ve met our match and there’s a woman that enters our lives who can just knock us on our ass or expose something in us, it’s so intriguing and it evokes these responses that you can’t even really explain. That’s exactly what it was, immediately, for Nick with Paige. And as the relationship continued and developed, not only was there a physical attraction there, but there was also a comfort in knowing that there was somebody out there that they could actually speak with about these topics that they previously were unable to talk about. There was a lot of solace to be found in that relationship. That’s certainly something Nick has never had before.
What was it like to have the added female energy, this season?
LUND: It was wonderful. My entire life, I’ve been surrounded by women, as I’m the middle child between two sisters and I’m very close with my mother. It probably drove my father insane, but I have a very strong feminine side. So, I’m very used to it. I welcome it. I think it’s great. Having so many guys around can be a little stale sometimes. It’s very important to be respectful of female energies and not always be brooding dudes. It’s very nice to have that around and offer a little bit of variety. They’re all lovely women and incredibly talented actress, too, so it made it very easy for us to be with them and witness what they were doing. They all cared so passionately about the material, so it made it an easier transition than I would have thought possible. We care so deeply about this stuff and we’ve done it for a year. These new kids on the block were there and we were like, “We don’t know what you’re up to.” And then, they ended up being lovely people and we could all rally behind a common goal.
This show really requires a lot of you, physically and emotionally. Was there any one specific fight scene or action sequence that you most enjoyed getting to do, this season?
LUND: Yes, there is a crazy bunch of fight scenes in the finale. The finale is excellent. It had to be on par with last season’s finale, which was incredible. We had the same director, T.J. Scott, who is an absolute barrel of monkeys. He’s an energy ball, and he’s able to get you so excited to beat somebody up, as if I ever need any reinforcement. So, there are some pretty great scenes in Episode 10 that I’m very excited for people to see. I put my heart and soul into it, and want it to be as good as possible. The most bored person on set was my stunt double because I wanted to do everything myself. It was a very physically demanding sequence, but it was possibly one of the funnest things I’ve ever done. I felt like a different person. I felt like I was on some other planet. It was a very transcendent experience for me. And it was until I caught my breath, well after cut, that I would come back to earth. That was a really fun time for me.
Bitten airs on Friday nights on Syfy.