Chris Wood’s now part of his third The CW series with a starring role in Containment. The Vampire Diaries and The Carrie Diaries actor takes on the role of Jake, a character far different from fan favorite Kai in the network’s The Vampire Diaries, a series that also comes from Containment‘s writer/executive producer Julie Plec.
“He’s quite different. Jake is a good guy, first of all, that’s the biggest difference,” explained Wood during roundtable interviews at the 2015 San Diego Comic Con. “He’s something of an introvert. He’s very guarded. He keeps to himself. He’s tough. Guarded is the best word to describe him, I think. Whatever he’s been through in his life has led him to a place where he doesn’t like to open up to people. He doesn’t say more words than he has to. He keeps to himself. He’s got a bad temper but he hides it most of the time. When he’s stuck inside, he’s forced to either step up to the plate or run and defend himself. He’s very conflicted. He’s not a leader by nature. He’s a really good guy; he’s a really good person but his first instinct is to protect himself. He sort of wants nothing to do with leadership, but that’s sort of been thrust upon him. There’s no other law enforcement inside, so he has to find a way to do what’s right and what he feels he can do while still protecting himself and staying alive.”
Wood says he actually shot the pilot for Containment while still working on the last two episodes of The Vampire Diaries. “I would be on set as Jake one day and the very next day go and shoot as Kai. It was a little disorienting. I never got them mixed up – it was never confusing in that way. But just the characters are so different and the styles of the shows are so different, it was sort of fun though. It felt a little crazy for a couple of weeks. Getting to jump from one character to another that’s so far removed from what I’d been doing, that’s the greatest challenge. Part of why I love acting is getting to try on different personas and how do you feel as somebody else? Having people be so different, so drastically different, that’s the best thing you can have.”
Wood’s fully aware of the strong fan base for Kai and that they were devastated when the character left the show. He also admits to feeling traumatized by Kai’s death in season six of The Vampire Diaries. “[Kai’s] the best,” said Wood. “He’s nuts. I had a blast playing Kai. He’s so entertaining to me. Just his sense of humor is so unique and so funny. He could just sit around and make himself laugh just locked in a room. He literally did that for 18 years by himself. He’s a very special kind of person. He’s so interesting, and the season arc too. After the merge I got to play a character who totally changed personalities. There’s no other story like when someone’s personality, especially a sociopath, suddenly gets feelings. It’s very unique. I had a blast.”
Getting back to his new show, Wood explained a little bit about what viewers can expect from season one of Containment. “A disease breaks out and we lock down the city in order to prevent the spread of the disease. It’s very clinical. It’s very scientific. It’s a law enforcement situation that we’re assessing the best political moves. But what the story is really about is humans,” explained Wood. “You get really extreme responses out of these people as they’re put in life-threatening situations. It’s a nice world to live and the characters are so vivid and so unique.”
Watch the full interview with Chris Wood on Containment:
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