Ready for a trip back to the late 70s? That’s exactly what will happen as viewers are transported back in time thanks to CBC’s newest drama Caught, premiering Monday, February 26 at 9 p.m. ET. From Allan Hawco (Republic of Doyle), after being locked up from a drug deal gone wrong, David Slaney (Hawco) makes a daring break from a New Brunswick prison to make one more deal with his former partner Brian Hearn (Eric Johnson, Rookie Blue, The Knick). Hot at his heels is police officer Patterson (Paul Gross, Alias Grace) and Detective Kate Williams (Enuka Okuma, Rookie Blue).
Johnson and Okuma, along with co-star Tori Anderson (No Tomorrow, Killjoys), recently spoke with The TV Junkies about being a part of the new series. Anderson plays Ada, a free spirit con artist, and she was in agreement with her co-stars about Caught being one of the best experiences of her career. The trio detail exactly why that is, preview a little about their characters and gush about why they were all in awe of showrunner and star Hawco.
The TV Junkies: First off, what can you share about the characters you’re playing?
Enuka Okuma: What I loved was that I play a black woman struggling in a man’s world in 1978, but it’s not that different in 2018. It was pretty cool to play such a modern story but in that context. I loved that.
Eric Johnson: I do play the bad guy, but what I loved about Allan’s scripts were that all the characters were so complicated. One of the first things that director TJ Scott said is that everyone is hiding something, everybody has an ulterior motive and is going after something different. That was the big fun of it all for me, getting to play those layers. A lot of times TV can be pretty straight-forward, or you get a lot of expositional scenes where you’re given a lot of information, but here it’s about withholding information and keeping your cards close to your chest. It made a lot of scenes have a ton of tension and it just make it fun to play.
When you read a bad guy and they are just a simple bad guy it’s boring. To get one that’s complicated with a lot of layers and emotion to it is just a lot of fun.
Tori Anderson: I feel the same way that Eric did and it’s something that really drew me into the script. A lot of the characters are a combination of good and evil, it’s just where they fall on the scale. Every character is duplicitous and there’s so many sides to who they can be. As an audience member, you’re constantly guessing because no one is saying what they mean. It’s so refreshing to find a script that isn’t on the nose like that and you can really play the layers. I just thought it was brilliantly written and the cast took it to another level with the direction and the crew. People really trusted in it and I think it shows.
EJ: The other thing is how bold it is visually. The types of lenses and the direction allowed it to be a very bold show that gets you immersed in that time period. They actually used vintage lenses from the 70s on modern cameras to give it that look. That goes right into the wardrobe and especially Enuka, she looks incredible!
TTVJ: I agree! You are totally killing the wardrobe game in this, Enuka!
EO: We certainly have Michael Ground to thank for that. He was our costume designer and he’s brilliant. Then I worked with the hair and makeup team and we found this great wig! As soon as I put it on I was like ‘oh, it’s 1978!’ [laughs] Couple all that with the production design and set decor and you really felt immersed in that time period. It wasn’t hard to suspend the imagination.
TTVJ: Some of the story is shot in the Dominican Republic. What was that experience like?
EO: It was really fun because we had a pretty small group — only around 30 people with cast and crew. We were sequestered on this almost abandoned resort, essentially.
EJ: It was off season as we shot in the summer so it’s not like everyone is trying to escape winter and head down there.
EO: Which we now know why because it’s so damn hot! We had a really great time socially though because we were all stuck in one place. We really bonded and it probably translated on screen as well. It was a fast family.
TA: We were working with a crew that was mostly from Newfoundland, and they are the most wonderful, kind, welcoming and funny people. They’ve all worked together before and have a great rapport already.
EJ: We were all sort of pulling double duty down there because it was a smaller crew, but it meant that everyone was working for each other. You really got that you were part of a team and looking out for one another. It was a special environment to be working in and one of the best experiences shooting of my career.
EO and TA: Mine too!
TTVJ: Allan is not only starring in this, but he served as showrunner as well. Had anyone worked with him before and what was this experience like?
TA: No, and I don’t know how he does it. He’d be doing script rewrites the day before we were shooting things after he had shot the entire day. He’s a force and doesn’t stop.
EJ: While still going to the gym! [laughs]
TA: He’s brilliant and the way he helmed everything created a cohesive unit where people want to work with him. He’s a wonderful man and so kind and generous. He really promotes the team mentality.
EO: I found him very inspiring and he’s an example of how you want it to be done. On top of all the work he’s doing, he’s friendly and kind and makes everyone feel open.
EJ: He’s open creatively too and wants your input and ideas. You can get in situations where people have those titles and that power leads to ‘do what I say because I’m in charge.’ With Allan it’s the exact opposite. He’s so inclusive and friendly. He’s a great leader in that regard and he’s a tremendous actor!
TTVJ: After watching the first episode it seems like there was quite a few flashbacks. Is that something we can expect throughout the season?
EJ: You’ll see a few of them and they give clarification into where the characters came from. The ones you do see in the flashbacks you’ll see again in the present.
Are you looking forward to checking out Caught? Sound off below!
Editor in Chief Bridget Liszewski comes from a long line of TV Junkies who fostered her love of television from a very young age. She's channeled that passion into covering both US and Canadian television shows, and is thankful everyday for the invention of the DVR. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame, she loves college football and is a fan of sports in general. Bridget is always up for talking TV and you can follow her on twitter at @BridgetOnTV.