Before the long hiatus GRIMM left viewers hanging with Nick Burkhardt (David Giuntoli) finding out about the steamy kiss between his fiancé Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch) and his boss Captain Renard (Sasha Roiz). What exactly Nick is going to do with that shocking revelation and whether Juliette and Renard will be successful in keeping away from each other shall be revealed in the second half of GRIMM’s sophomore season. In a recent press conference call, co-stars Bitsie Tulloch and Sasha Roiz candidly shared what steamy scenes await fans and viewers in the upcoming episode “Face Off” and how difficult it was to film such explosive love scenes. They also teased a bit about how Nick and Adalind (Claire Coffee) are going to react to the illicit love-affair gone wrong.
Did you expect the showdown with Nick and Renard to be this soon?
SASHA: I was actually surprised that it’s as soon as it is. I thought it could even be dragged out until the end of the season. But I’m really glad that it’s happened and glad that we had a chance to finally confront each other, because I think it’s something the fans had been waiting for a long time. As characters and as actors that had been waiting for as well. So yes, I don’t think it’s a moment too soon.
Will fans be surprised to see how far Juliette and Renard’s relationship will go?
BITSIE: What happens on Friday night, we’ve not seen the likes of on GRIMM so far. I think it’s really fun and I think it’s just a great way to sort of deal with what’s going on between the two of them and also to highlight how little control they have over it. That this is not slow burning love, like they literally can’t control the lust. Obviously, it gets to a sort of violent place and neither them is really wanting this to happen. They can’t help it. Obviously Sasha’s character understands more of what’s going on coming from that world and Juliette is just like, “All right, well, I guess par for the course, I’m already losing my mind.”
SASHA: Will fans be surprised? I think they’ve seen it escalate and this will be a great payoff, I believe. It’s fun. It’s fun to explore new ground, new territory with GRIMM. It’s almost like GRIMM after-dark, a little racier version. So I think they’ll be pleased and it’s a good payoff after this long hiatus.
We’ve heard there’s a love scene that required a lot of rehearsal. Can you talk about how that fits in and why it took so long?
BITSIE: It took so long because we had to have a stunt coordinator help us out, particularly me. I’m sort of known among the cast members of being — I don’t know, Sasha, what would you say?
SASHA: She’s a little clumsy.
BITSIE: Yes. That love scene also got edited down massively, but when we were actually shooting it, it took something like eight-and-a-half hours to get through which is incredibly long for basically one scene because it was so complicated and it did require such coordination.
SASHA: That said, Bitsie always want a stunt coordinator there when she has a love scene, so who knows.
BITSIE: That’s right, that’s my style. It was intense. I think it was definitely a shocker for us when we read it because we really didn’t believe it when we read it. We thought it was a bit of a joke. But they went there. It was so intense that we thought it was a joke. We literally thought it was a joke that when we read the script. We were like, “Ha-ha, where’s our real script?”
SASHA: But I think it came out well. I haven’t seen it but I presume it came out well.
Now that Nick knows about the Captain and Juliette, can you talk about the impact that it has on the three characters going forward?
SASHA: It’s going to be very delicate moving ahead and I don’t want to say too much because we’ll see what happens. Because it’s really Nick’s choice at this point whether he wants to move ahead, whether he wants to stay Portland, or whether he wants to deal with me with her. So there’s going to be a lot of fall-out and that’s going to occupy the remainder of this season. To see what will transpire and how pieces will fall, where they fall I should say. So that’s really going to be a very delicate balance I think moving on.
The Hexenbiest put that obsessive spell on both of you but do you think there is any genuine affection between Renard and Juliette?
SASHA: I would say probably not. I got to be honest. I think that it’s forced us into a situation that is probably pretty unnatural. I mean not to say that she’s not an attractive woman but I don’t think that Renard would even allow himself to even venture in that territory if he was not under the spell.
BITSIE: The truth is they barely knew each other. The assumption is they may or may not have met at a couple work functions. So who knows if they want to sort of play with this more down the road. But the reality is when they first came under the spell they didn’t really know each other, so this sort of lusting and obsession really is for lack of a better word, manmade. It’s chemical. Not chemical in like the pheromone way, chemical like literally poison and they’re both under a spell kind of a way. No love at first sight.
Has playing Juliette given you a better understanding of who she is and sort of helped you to mold the character?
BITSIE: Yes, absolutely. I mean in Season 2, I’ve had so much more to do with her, which is not to knock the storyline from Season 1 because at the beginning of Season 1 it was about this guy who I’ve been dating, who I loved, and he lost basically the woman who raised him. I know a lot of fans were sort of saying: “How can she be so naïve? How is she not seeing this?” But she was just being really understanding and sensitive to Nick’s situation. But waking up in Season 2 in a coma and then having just this big empty hole where this man once lived has been sort of crazy and I have to say you have not seen the worst of it. What goes on with Juliette gets much worse before it gets better. They’re just sort of starting to layout what’s going to happen the rest of Season 2. So as an actress, it’s definitely been so much fun for me to really go into these deep dark depths of the character and her mental space. She’s really starting to lose it. I mean, as you can imagine, it’s crazy to wake up and see pictures of this stranger all over your house and be told that you were going to get married and all this stuff and you have no recollection whatsoever. Then all of a sudden she’s lusting after someone she barely knows and can’t control herself. I mean it’s enough to make anybody mad. So that’s been fun for me.
If you had to pick your favorite and least favorite thing about your character, what would they be?
SASHA: I like and dislike how secretive Renard is because, on one hand, it’s really fun to play. On the other hand, sometimes even I don’t know what he’s up to. Like he’s just a very mysterious character and the writers keep me guessing, because we don’t always know. So it’s a very difficult balance to strike sometimes but it also keeps me very engaged as an actor and viewer.
How much of the fight scenes do you actually have to do? And is it difficult?
BITSIE: We didn’t have stunt doubles. We did it all. We just had somebody go through it to make sure that I didn’t hurt him basically.
SASHA: It can be taxing after a while. With Bitsie and I, it wasn’t bad. I was surprised we both walked away from it fairly unscathed. The one with David and I, it was 2 o’clock in the woods on a Friday. We were just exhausted from the week and we’re doing our best for this really long fight sequence where there were some stuntmen because there were some things you can’t do.
BITSIE: They won’t let you do.
SASHA: Yes, exactly. We did most everything on our own and we did kind of end up hurting each other, David and I. But that’s par for the course. But it’s fun to do it and it’s just challenging. It’s just another challenge, I suppose.
BITSIE: I had a scene – without teasing too much — I had a scene recently where I did my own stunts and I had to be rigged to something so that I wouldn’t fall off. I’m supposed to kind of go to the edge and literally on the first take I almost fell off. I would have just been dangling there. It was really funny.
SASHA: (Laughs) The fact that you’re still in one piece after 40 episodes is remarkable.
What’s the most difficult scene or episode you’ve had to do so far and why?
BITSIE: Mine hasn’t aired yet. There’s a lot of really, really intense emotional stuff coming up for Juliette, just really heavy and pretty serious. So that’s probably the hardest that I’ve had to do but that episode is something to look forward to I guess.
SASHA: This upcoming episode I should say was pretty hard for me. It was challenging on all levels because physically it was a lot of — Bitsie spoke about a lot of fight choreographies and sequences and long hours — and then emotionally as well, it just kind of took Renard to every sort of realm of emotion and so it was pretty challenging.
Can you tell us a little bit about what’s going on between Renard and Adalind in this episode and moving forward?
SASHA: It’s very antagonistic and she’s definitely a thorn in my side and she’s out to thwart all of my plans. She’s also incredibly conniving and manipulative just the same as Renard is. So she knows how to play him and what I love about some of the writing is you really don’t know who’s playing who sometimes. I think there’s always a turn of the tables and so it will be interesting to see what transpires. But she certainly has presented herself at a very difficult time for him. He’s very vulnerable at this point and so she’s found a weakness and her timing couldn’t be better.
Do you think there would ever be a time when the two of them could hook up, that she could give Juliette a little run for her money?
SASHA: Well, I mean I think you’ll have to watch on Friday because who knows. It certainly some challenge to it there, yes.
As far as Juliette and Renard’s relationship is exposed and Renard’s secret identity may be exposed and people are circling around the key. Will we see a resolution to that storyline in this back half or at least see it come to a climax?
SASHA: You’re definitely going to see some form of resolution to it. It’s a major storyline for us and it’s going to be dealt with. But it will take the course of this season to deal with it properly.
Is there anyway that Renard and Nick can work together as police officers going forward in coming seasons?
SASHA: Yes, I mean I believe so. Like I said, we’re going to have to deal with a lot of issues and see if we can put aside our differences and work together again. So a lot of that depends on Nick and whether he’s able to forgive, able to move forward. But I think he could move ahead and, if anything, it could open up a whole new chapter now that we’re in the know and there’s no secrets anymore. There’s the possibility to certainly be better partners.
What has been your favorite episodes so far?
BITSIE: From Season 1, I really like the episode “Game Ogre” just because that was sort of the first time Juliette was inadvertently drawn into the fray in a sort of physical way. I also liked from Season 1 the thing with feathers, which is the one where Nick and Juliette go away for the weekend to that romantic cabin and all hell breaks loose. Again, I think one of the reasons I like it is because she ends up having to hunt down and sort of save Nick. Then there’s been a lot of great stuff from Season 2, but I would say from Season 2 so far my favorite episode is the one that’s going to air on Friday night (entitled “Face Off”).
SASHA: I would agree. The one that airs Friday night is pretty amazing and I think it’s got something for every character. I think that is really what appeals to me is when everybody’s kind of featured and there’s such high stakes. Then I think from Season 1, my favorite is probably “Three Coins in a Fushsbau” because it was the first time we get a sense or a glimpse into the Captain and some of his personal life and his ambitions. So that was a lot of fun for me.
Looking back, what’s your favorite Wesen to date?
BITSIE: I loved the Eisbibers. I loved the actor Danny Bruno. He’s fantastic. I’m so proud of him. They’ve smartly they’ve written him into a pretty major recurring just because he’s just so lovable and it’s nice to have a Wesen that’s not necessarily a scary blood-thirsty Wesen. Then I also like as far as the scary ones, I really like the Mauvais Dentes, who was the saber tooth-tiger Wesen from the first two episodes of Season 2.
SASHA: I like the Reapers. I like what they represent: mythologically, the scythe that they carry, the fact that they come into reap revenge and that they’re after the Grimms and they have this very specific purpose in the world. I also like my own character the bastard Hexenbiest. What I love about it is we never had any half-breed before. And so the fact that you could cross-pollinate and you could have all these part creatures part Wesens, that makes it really interesting for me. And I’m really curious to see that develop and to see that whole sort of other culture that exists that just has a trace of Wesen blood in them.
Why do you think a show like GRIMM continues to come up on top despite all these other obstacles?
BITSIE: Because it’s fun. I think this is something that all the cast have been saying ad naseum, but it’s true, is that the show has a little bit of everything for everybody. For people who like procedurals. You have that you have the romance. It’s funny, especially with characters like Silas Weir Mitchell’s character and Reggie Lee’s character, they’re pretty funny. And then you have the fantasy, you have the sci-fi, you have these monsters, you have the visual effects. There’s really a lot going on.
SASHA: I agree with Bitsie. I think we struck a really delicate balance where there’s so many different styles at play and there’s so many different things that can appeal to the viewers. But I think ultimately we also don’t take ourselves too seriously. Like there’s a humor to the show that underlies the entire thing. So it’s just very palatable. I was impressed at how wide a net they could throw and how varied our demographic can be.
BITSIE: The show unsurprisingly does very well internationally because it doesn’t take itself too seriously. I mean you’re dealing with heavy things, but you’re dealing with it in a sort of light and fun way. It’s not one of those shows that’s lost in translation. People are familiar with these fairy tales so it’s sort of fun to tune in and see how they’re being reinterpreted in a modern way. It doesn’t surprise me at all that the show does so well internationally and some of our main diehard fans have come from other countries all over the world. And it’s just expanding into more and more territories.
With so many game-changing incidents throughout this next episode, what’s going to happen next?
SASHA: I think at least for Renard there’s going to be a real challenge in keeping the Grimm loyal, keeping the Grimm in Portland, keeping the plan that he had concocted for so long in place, keeping Adalind at bay. And making sure that we could continue as a police force and continue as also this mythological team to keep outside influences and forces at bay from encroaching on our domain.
BITSIE: What happens in the rest of Season 2 I think has been really fantastic. I mean literally every episode once we got back from our hiatus, every episode — I mean they’re really doing huge episodes that are just very grand in scope. I’ve read some of them and been, like, “Are you guys crazy? There’s no way you’re going to be able to shoot this in eight days.” Really fun, crazy, new Wesen and they’re delving deeper not just the mythology or the way that we’ve been referring to the mythology but literally mythology, with an almost like a god-like creature. They’re really going in new directions and the episodes really — I’m not just saying this — they get better and better. And I’m really proud of what we’ve been able to do in Season 2 and where it’s going. I think the fans are going to be super, super excited about the last ten episodes of Season 2.
Are we’re ever going to get any backstory on Renard, the royal bastard, and anything about his mother, the Hexenbiest who bore him? Is she still alive or are we ever going to meet her? And how did you get in police work? Was it before you knew you were a royal or after?
SASHA: That’s a lot of backstory. I think we will uncover more about the royal bastard, which is my favorite terminology these days. But, yes, you will. We’ve already introduced members of his family. We’ve already displayed and will continue to display more things from the old world and how things work there and had worked there and continue to work there. So you will get some more on him and the world that he comes from. As far as police work, I don’t know. I mean we’ll have to touch upon that but I think if I was to wager a guess, it’s probably because it’s a great way to have a certain level of power and authority which is really all he’s after.
Now that Renard’s dealing with emotions with Juliette and now that Nick knows that Renard is the other man. Will we see him slip up and maybe lose his composure and maybe transform for Nick to see that he’s a Wesen?
SASHA: You’ll just have to wait until Friday and maybe you’ll see something. There’s going to be more back-story and there definitely be a lot more reveals about where he comes from and how he came to be.
Sasha, what was it like having not one but two love scenes in the episode?
SASHA: It was a lot of fun. They definitely kept me busy in that episode. I mean there was a lot of love, a lot of hate, a lot of fighting. It was a very busy episode and Renard finds himself into some very interesting situations. So an action-packed episode.
To see how dangerous love can truly be when concocted through a nasty love potion and the damaging ripple-effects it leaves in its wake, be sure to tune in to the return of GRIMM on Friday, March 8th at 9:00 p.m. on NBC.
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