I had the privilege of speaking with Gregg Chillin (Zoroaster) and Laura Haddock (Lucrezia Donati) about season two of “Da Vinci’s Demons” at a press roundtable back during New York Comic Con. If you missed it, here's my interview with Blake Ritson and Carolina Guerra. Be sure to check back next Friday for an interview with Tom Riley and David Goyer. Catch the season two premiere of “Da Vinic’s Demons” on STARZ on March 22 at 8.
Q: Laura, what can you tell us about your character in season two?
Laura Haddock: Well she goes off on quite an epic journey, both emotionally and geographically. I get the opportunity to explore Lucrezia seven or eight years ago. So I get the opportunity to go back and do some flashback kind of stuff, which was amazing because I got to play and see and feel how she felt seven, eight years ago when a certain thing happened, and how that’s changed her life. How she would have been a completely different woman if this thing hadn’t happened to her, but it did and there’s nothing you could do. It changes a person forever. There’s nothing that she could do. So it allowed me a little sneaky peek into her life before, and really understand why she is the person that she is. And it made me feel really, really connected to her, and actually I felt huge sympathy for her. And I understand the truly horrific situation she is in at this point, having to do all these things, not wanting to, but she has to. She’s avenging something that was tragic.
Greg, you have some really interesting stuff coming up as well. You have a storyline about having to rescue Nico. There’s a character named Amerigo Vespucci, and it turns out your character may have a bit of history. There’s really a lot of cool things going on this time, don’t you?
Greg Chillin: Yeah, it’s cool. I’ve said before, but I think you get to learn more about Zora sort of two episodes in season two than you did the entirety of season one, which is cool. It’s just been fun sort of exploring the character more. I’m not so much the sort of wise cracking sidekick this year.
LH: There’s that but there’s also really dramatic stuff.
GC: There is that also. Truly like me and Leo are kind of…the key thing is why do I follow Leo around? And I know that there’s things happen in season two that allude to our history together, and that I know that David has plans in the future to really go back and look at that. What’s interesting about the show is when they go back – you know, we started in Florence. We’re all sort of fully formed kind of characters, but we don’t know what drives us, and how we end up being where we are. What’s great about this, you know, like your flashbacks in season two, we suddenly jump back like seven years ago, and it’s kind of incredible seeing these fresh faced characters.
LH: I mean there was a lot of concealer that day. It was a hell, my make up call was long. Can you take the years off me? Go. There was no coffee that morning.
Blake mentioned that you [Greg Chillin] and him have some interesting scenes since he’s joining along on your journey, so how does that work out? I mean you tied him up. You’re not friendly people.
GC: Oh my gosh. I have to say we’ve had lots and lots of fun this year. But yeah, Blake, Riario rather, nearly kills me about a hundred times this season. He’s relentless. I’m nearly numb to it, you know? It’s just, what’s good about this season is that a lot is the same, but a lot of different. Characters you know but haven’t seen together get thrust together in a particularly bad situation. It’s interesting seeing the new dynamics work. That’s what’s been fun this year.
LH: Yeah, definitely. We got a little opportunity, didn’t we?
GC: Yeah, we had a few.
LH: We did a little water number.
GC: Yeah, exactly. We put our speedos on.
How are things changing for Lucrezia this year now that the jig is up? Now that people know what she’s about.
LH: Yeah, well part of the jig is up, but not all of the jig. There’s so much more jig to be up. Listen, if she went back to Florence at this point, it would be horrendous. I mean, I don’t know if she’d survive it, so that’s why she’s had to kind of take herself off on this journey. What she did last season was just awful, but I feel like, and I’ve said this, I feel like I want an opportunity to sit, I think with Leonardo. I think he’d be the only person who would just get it, and understand, and not judge. I think I want the opportunity where we sit down, we have a cup of tea, and say “Listen, this is what happened to me. This is what I have been made to do. This isn’t who I am, but I have to do it because there’s no other choice.” And I think he’d go, “I get that. I get it.” Because, you know, we have massive similarities, and the kind of mother/father complex we both have. Yeah.
If you talk to Blake, for example, and he talks about Riario. Riario has very real reasons for what he does, and he doesn’t consider himself a villain. He’s got God on his side. He’s got the Pope. But for your character, can she justify what she does?
LH: I think some people when they are doing things like that can brainwash themselves into thinking that what they’re doing is right. Other people have a huge sense of guilt, and a humongous sense of being out of control of a decision that has to be made. It’s not her decision, but she has to do it. Because there’s a huge reason why she does everything that she does. I won’t go into it because you’ll see it, but when you see what happens, you’ll understand. It’s her whole heart was broken was changed.
GC: There’s some incredible flashback scenes with Lucrezia, when you jump back like seven or eight years ago. It’s like such an eye opener. It makes you really see that character in an entirely different light.
LH: And I didn’t want to, last season, do all these things that I knew I had to do. Like reading the scripts and going, “Oh my gosh. She does what? She does what?” And I didn’t want it to be that it was an easy thing for her to do. I wanted her to feel everything that she did because it’s not who she is. That’s not the girl she was supposed to be. She’s had to learn it, and develop it, and fake it. So I really wanted to make her really, really three dimensional and not just a crazed woman like stabbing people left, right, and center. Because when you stabbed someone, you feel guilty. Like I feel guilty about stabbing people.
Leave me your thoughts in a comment below. What are you excites you most about season two? Make sure you hit subscribe.