Saturday at C2E2 in Chicago I had the opportunity to talk with Nikita actor Shane West and executive producer Craig Silverstein during the Nikita press conference. I had almost ten minute chats with each of them as part of a press roundtable, and captured both interviews in their entirety on video.
Considering that many of our Nikita questions were answered during the very informative hour long panel that happened in the IGN Theatre before the press conference, our questions went toward areas that weren’t covered by the panel. Shane West was our first interview, and he started off talking about how he handles the very intense Nikita shooting schedule and getting used to shooting the various scenes on location vs. the studio (he finds season two has gotten easier). He also talks about what his role in Nikita is like compared to his prior roles like ER and how Nikita is far more fun. ER being a procedural involved a lot more technical know how. He finds Nikita much simpler. Shane also has some opportunities to take on some independent roles, but he can’t do those right now without knowing Nikita’s status.
The next interview was with Craig Silverstein. I started off by asking him a question I’ve asked in our previous two interviews at San Diego Comic Con, is he still sticking to his three year plan? He is, although the original three year plan has had to be adjusted a bit because of network input. I also asked that if the network pulled the plug on the show, will the season two ender be satisfying to fans. He gave a definitive yes. In his words, leaving fans hanging like that and then not coming back is “irresponsible” and he doesn’t like it when shows do that. He also talks more about Nikita and Michael’s relationship, and he brought them together sooner because of fan and network input over the ambiguity of Michael’s character. It was a chance to develop his role more. He also shares a small spoiler that Ryan and Birkhoff will begin to interact, and how Ryan’s “boy scout” attitude will bring something different to the team. Any chance Ryan will have to learn to fight? Maybe. They have a role planned for him.
Craig also talks about season three’s chances. He’s going to do his pitch to the network on the same day he did last year. They liked his pitch last year, so he’s got something good for them this year. “I’ve only ever gotten the call two days before,” he said when hearing about renewal. I asked him if the network support has been good, especially with their Friday time slot. He thinks so, but he wishes that they had reversed the time slots with Supernatural and have Nikita airing at 9 pm. He would like that strong lead-in. Finally, when asked about guest stars, he likes bringing in the bad types, the “anti-Nikita” as he calls them. He’d like to do more of that in season three.
Nikita returns from hiatus on Friday evening at 8 pm on The CW.