Surface is the exhilarating, distinctive psychological thriller you by no means knew you wanted in your life.
The newest Apple TV+ authentic has come out of the gates swinging for the fences, taking the viewers on a trip that has you continuously questioning who’s telling the reality and who’s straight up mendacity to you.
Stephan James is part of the spectacular ensemble that brings this story to life, and we received an opportunity to talk with him about what attracted him to the function of the mysterious Baden, what it was like taking pictures with that forged, and the way he’d describe the collection in a number of phrases.
This chat was a blast, so settle in and revel in. And make sure that to hit the feedback with all of your ideas about Surface!
So, simply leaping proper in right here to the present. The viewers is three episodes in. As we’re watching, it is laborious to get a learn on everybody. I’m curious out of your perspective, how would you describe Baden?
I imply, at this level, he is just a little little bit of a thriller, is not he? I feel that he appears to be fairly elusive. He appears to know loads, and he appears to not be sharing all the things he is aware of. And so I may undoubtedly see viewers members being just a little skeptical so far as who’s Baden and what are his intentions.
And what attracted you to the function of Baden?
I imply, quite a lot of these issues, actually. The reality that you could’t put your finger on him. I assumed for any actor, it is a pleasure to play a personality or an arc that is not predictable. And so, actually, in studying it, there have been quite a lot of questions I had simply so far as what this man’s motivations have been. And in order that was the driving power in me persevering with to show the web page.
And so I feel that was most likely the most important consider me eager to signal on to do that was that I could not determine him out, that there have been so many areas of grey, proper? This present is a lot within the grey, exterior of the black and white. And so it simply struck me as a chance to essentially, actually dive in and discover what that would really feel like.
Interesting. And that form of goes into my subsequent query: with a present like this, have been you conscious previous to even taking pictures what the entire story was? Or have been you form of discovering out script by script what was going to occur and the place your character was going to go subsequent?
Yeah. The creator of the present and our showrunner Veronica West was actually wonderful with mainly describing her imaginative and prescient for the entire season. Now we did not have each script earlier than. I possibly had the primary two scripts or so, however I had the imaginative and prescient laid out for me, which was one thing that was very compelling and interesting.
But I’ll say there’s nothing like really receiving these scripts and seeing these beats kind of play out, seeing all of the scenes that assist us get to the place we finally get to. I feel that was essentially the most thrilling half for us. And we’d continuously discuss it simply as a forged as we have been receiving scripts.
We would discuss how blown away we have been, how indignant we have been, pissed off, all of the feelings that include nice tv.
Sure, positive. Again, solely three episodes in, however I just like the chemistry between Baden and Sophie. And for my part, I really feel like he brings out a distinct facet of Sophie that we do not see when she’s with different folks. So, what’s it about Sophie and that dynamic you assume Baden is drawn to?
Well, I imply, clearly, there’s one thing deeper there. And I feel up till this level within the present, we do not completely know the way far their relationship went. So actually, there is a deep connection in that regard, and you’ll inform that he spent quite a lot of time with this girl and quite a lot of intimate time.
But she does not completely know the ins and outs of all of that point. And in order that’s an attention-grabbing kind of problem and one thing that I really feel like Baden is making an attempt to stability proper now within the present. So I feel it is attention-grabbing.
It’s attention-grabbing to know one thing, however to must hold it inside or to must measure what you are in a position to say. And who is aware of what’ll even be believed? You’re coping with the lady that has forgotten all the things. And so I feel Baden is being actually cautious about what he tells her, how he says it to her.
But beneath all that, you’ll be able to see that there is definitely a connection and one thing that has fed their relationship up till this level.
Definitely. Surface encompasses many alternative themes and touches on many subjects from trauma, trauma remedy, relationships, and unhealthy dynamics. What do you hope the viewers finally can take away from the collection?
More so than something, I hope they get pleasure from it. I feel it is all the time a humorous query once I get requested, “What do you hope they take away?” Honestly, I do not actually have a robust opinion on what I really feel like they need to take away. Art is so subjective that everybody will take away various things, however I simply hope they get pleasure from it.
I feel it will make them assume loads about possibly their very own reminiscences, their very own previous, the folks that they’ve of their world, and their orbit that they select to consider. And then there’s that concept of belief.
Who will we select to consider? What model of occasions are we going to go along with once we cannot bear in mind issues for ourselves? And so, if something, there’s quite a lot of hypothetical considering that occurs.
It’s like, if one thing like this have been to occur to me, if I forgot my complete previous, all my reminiscences, who would I look to assist put the items of the puzzle again collectively? And so, if something, eerily sufficient, possibly the viewers will begin feeling and considering like that.
Yeah, no, that is nice. I really like that reply as a result of, as you mentioned, all of us watch one thing and may take away one thing completely totally different from it. So so long as we’re having fun with it, I assume that’s crucial half.
The forged is stacked. How was it filming with everybody? And do you have got any enjoyable tales out of your time filming?
I cherished everybody. I cherished working with everybody, truthfully. I felt like all of us fashioned a extremely particular bond whereas out in Vancouver making this present. And that is partially as a result of all of us received alongside so nicely. And so we spent quite a lot of time exterior of labor as nicely. Not each undertaking is like that.
Some individuals are simply folks you hang around with while you’re at work, however we have been fortunate sufficient to have a extremely, actually nice group that we tried to get collectively as a lot as we may exterior of labor, whether or not or not it’s for dinners, espresso. We went on a boating journey in the midst of the season, which was actually enjoyable.
Vancouver is nice. So I’ve a ton of reminiscences. It was all good occasions, and I’m grateful to have labored with the group. It was a particular group.
Great. So, I work for an outlet referred to as TV Fanatic. So I’ve to ask, since we’re obsessive about TV over right here, what are a number of the reveals you are digging proper now? Or are there reveals simply on the whole which might be form of your go-to reveals to look at when you’ll be able to?
As far as my go-to reveals, Parks and Rec. Nothing beats Parks and Rec. You may flip off your mind for a second and simply get pleasure from. So undoubtedly admire Parks and Rec when all else fails.
As far as one thing new I’ve been watching, I’m having fun with Loot on Apple. Shout out to Apple. Also, having fun with Blackbird on Apple. I received some associates on this present, and I feel it is actually good. So these two can be my high two proper now.
Those are all good decisions. Parks and Rec is a basic. Can’t actually go improper there.
You cannot go improper.
And I’ve one remaining query for you. How would you describe Surface in three phrases?
Three phrases. Let’s see. It is thrilling. It is mind-bending.
Hopefully, that counts as one phrase.
And then it’s scrumptious.
Oh, no person ever says “delicious.” I prefer it.
I do. I do, Whitney. There’s a primary for all the things.
There is! Well, thanks a lot in your time right this moment. It was nice.
Thank you, Whitney. Appreciate it.
New episodes of Surface can be found Fridays on Apple TV+.
***This interview has been edited for size and readability.***
Whitney Evans is a employees author for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.