Jay Bobbin / On TV Today
Having appeared in the horror movies “Final Destination” and “Idle Hands,” Devon Sawa is on somewhat familiar turf in a supernaturally flavored new series.
The actor plays a troubled detective who tries to help himself while also helping a news producer (Paula Patton, of such films as “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol”) who knows where and when her daughter (Aria Birch) is destined to die – but not why, nor by whose hand – in “Somewhere Between,” which ABC premieres Monday, July 24. Inspired by a Korean show, the melodrama also features JR Bourne (“Teen Wolf”) as the apparent victim’s father, who is San Francisco’s district attorney.
Sawa describes his new character as “kind of a broken guy who has a past. He was a police officer who let alcohol get to him and he started messing up at work and messing up with his girl. He’s ended up a private investigator and is just taking jobs to get by, still drinking and using his humor just to get through the day … and he’s dealt this card by fate. He believes (Patton’s character’s plight) right away, and by the end of the series, he’s a changed man.”
The filming atmosphere evidently helped the “Somewhere Between” cast and crew. “It was a long, hard stretch” in Vancouver, Sawa reports, “four months of pretty gnarly hours. It was a tough one. When I went up there, I thought, ‘OK, it’s not going to be that bad. A couple of sweatshirts, some pairs of jeans, and it’ll be fine.’ Well, it was their coldest winter in a long time, and we had night shoots and rain … but it kind of went with the series, so it was good. We just used it.”
Maintaining that he’s “a fan of this kind of stuff,” Sawa expectedly shares a lot of screen time with Patton in “Somewhere Between,” and he’s grateful for what he deems their “unreal” chemistry. “She is a ball of magical energy,” he says. “From the first day, you just knew this was her passion project, and she was all-hands-on. It was good to have her as the captain of the ship.”
A run on The CW’s now-ended “Nikita” acclimated Sawa to series work after he’d gotten a crash course by doing one episode of another show: “I was on (CBS’) ‘NCIS: Los Angeles.’ I’d never done TV before, and I got on that set and was completely out of my element. I had no idea why they were moving so fast, and I was so unprepared for it. By the time I got to ‘Nikita,’ I realized I had to be on the ball from Take One. It takes an adjustment.”