“Grimm” is going to have a very special guest tonight during the March 21 episode, “The Show Must Go On.” “Being Human” star Sam Witwer will guest as werewolf Maximillian, who is the main attraction at a traveling carnival. The main problem? The more he turns into his beast form, the more he loses his humanity.
Zap2it spoke with Witwer about what “Grimm” fans can expect from his appearance in Season 3, as well as what’s in store for the final three episodes of “Being Human.”
Zap2it: Can you offer a tease about the character you play tonight?
Sam Witwer: He’s a guy who doesn’t really quite understand what this whole phenomenon is, what this whole werewolf thing is. Because he doesn’t understand it, he doesn’t have a community of people that understand it as well, so he’s been kind of taken in by this carnival. He’s kind of the star act of this freak show. Basically his ability to transform is being taken advantage of by this ringmaster.
The problem is, when you turn every night like he’s doing for these freak shows, you start sort of losing control of yourself, losing control of your humanity, and you start blacking out every now and then. He is out there causing some mayhem that people like Dave Giuntoli are going to have to solve.
Did you and David know each other beforehand?
We did. We did a pilot together. We played brothers. He’s the only actor I’ve ever worked with who, just by looking at him, makes me crack up — and vice versa.
People probably know you best as the vampire Aiden on “Being Human.” Was it tough switching gears to a werewolf here?
It was actually quite a bit of an adjustment. It took me a few days to even know quite what I was doing. I think there was an expectation that I would arrive just knowing what I was doing, but no, not at all. [laughs]
Have you always been drawn to genre?
You know, it’s a situation where I’m a fan. I’ve done other things, but it seems the ones that have been the most successful are the genre things, so I guess I just kind of get known for that.
The series finale of “Being Human” is coming up soon. Do you have any teases for what we can expect for the rest of the season?
This entire season, from its inception, was conceived as the last season. None of us wanted to go forward further than we thought the show could handle, both financially and also story-wise. We all did it because we wanted to tell a cool story. “Being Human” being a serialized show where every episode leads to the next, it’s one big story. We get to wrap that story up. We get to actually put a bow on it and say, “Well here’s what we think this whole ‘Being Human’ thing is all about.”
In terms of the key issues in the finale, it’s really about whether my character is capable of any kind of self-forgiveness; if he deserves redemption. It’s really about that: Whether he can be redeemed, and whether he deserves to be redeemed.
Are you planning to do more TV going forward?
It’s interesting; I’m an actor who gets terrified when he’s under contracts. “Being Human” was the longest job I’ve ever had. I’ve been a series regular twice before, and in both cases I got out of it. [laughs] I don’t like it. I don’t like the lack of mobility. I don’t like having to report to work no matter what, even if I don’t like the creative direction that it’s going.
“Being Human” was an interesting situation in that it was the first one where I was like, I’m going to take a chance and sign up, and sign up in such a way where I really couldn’t get out of it because I was No. 1 on the cast list. I took that chance, and I’ve got to say, it paid off, because I really enjoyed this show. I really enjoyed the h*** out of it. It was never an easy gig. It was constantly challenging.
So I’m coming off of “Being Human” having been handed non-stop, ridiculous acting challenges at all times, and now I’m trying to find something that will measure up in terms of getting that kind of workout, and it’s just tough. It’s tough because not all of it is for you. I don’t know if I want to be solving a crime every week, or doing this or doing that. The strategy is to take my time and figure out what’s next. In terms of long-term contract and stuff, I’m in no hurry to get into a situation like that.
“Grimm” airs Fridays on NBC at 9 p.m. ET/PT.