Ransom focuses on a crisis management team, whose sole purpose is to defuse high stress situations by investigating and negotiating their way out of it. The team consists of Eric Beaumont (Luke Roberts, Black Sails), Zara Hallman (Nazneen Contractor, Covert Affairs, Heroes Reborn) and Oliver Yates (Brandon Jay McLaren, Slasher, Graceland). We enter the series, which premieres Sunday, Jan. 1 on CBS and Global, in the middle of a stressful and frantic hostage situation, from there viewers get to see the strategic and well respected team go to work. During this adrenaline filled scene we also meet newcomer Maxine Carlson, portrayed by the fearless chameleon, Sarah Greene.
Greene (Penny Dreadful) has settled into a number of roles over her career, all vastly different in personality, though identical in the sense that her dedication to adapting to every new role she takes on is consistently spot on and believable. In this latest venture, Ransom, we see her tackle her new character with a naive, yet determined approach, and of course, tons of gusto. The TV Junkies caught up with Greene about her new role and discussed her character and the crisis management team.
The TV Junkies: What was your initial reaction to the script after reading it?
Sarah Greene: That Maxine is an interesting character. I understood that there was something dark in her past and it interested me. It’s always interesting to me to play a character with layers and the audience doesn’t know the half of it yet. She’s trying to figure out who she is, she wants questions answered. I was really intrigued after I read the pilot and then I got the job and I just really liked her storyline and I really liked where it was going. I think it’s a very interesting concept. There is so much violence and guns on TV these days, it’s amazing to watch people use their empathy and their inside intuition to resolve situations.
TTVJ: How would you describe the show to people?
SG: Ransom follows Eric Beaumont, the world’s top negotiator, and his team. They follow ransoms and kidnappings each week.
TTVJ: What can you tell us about your character, Maxine?
SG: She is very resourceful, she’s smart, she is young and a little bit naive and she lets her emotions get in the way a bit, which can kind of damage situations and relationships. They’re risk takers, they take on these difficult situations every week and they don’t know if they are going to come out of it. I love to play her and I hope it goes to a second season so I get to play her again.
TTVJ: We learn in the pilot that Maxine definitely has some secrets. Will we learn more about her backstory throughout this season?
SG: Yes! Not in every episode but you get little flashes, little revelations come out every now and again. For her as well though, it’s not that she is hiding all of these secrets, it’s that she doesn’t really know. She was brought up believing one thing and she’s spent her entire life wanting to work for Eric and his team, she’s been kind of fascinated by him. She goes to any length to get on that team and she’s not afraid, which makes her a really good negotiator because you need to be fearless.
TTVJ: She is new to the team and fresh out of college, how will we see her adjust to working with everyone?
SG: Oliver isn’t very happy that she is on the team so she has to work hard to get in his good books and that takes a very long time. That’s part of the communication though and how is she going to fit into this dynamic. It was lovely that Zara takes to her immediately and it was really nice to see two women supporting each other. I think she handles herself well, it’s her dream to work with these people so she’s not going to annoy anyone, she’s not going to rock the boat.
TTVJ: Did you have to be briefed on how a real office like this runs? How did you prepare for this role?
SG: I got the job like two days before we started shooting. [laughs] So I was sort of thrown into the deep end. We just worked off of the script basically and talked to the guys and amongst ourselves. You know, you just have to have empathy and compassion and I think actors are quite good at that, and of course you’re also trying to figure out what makes [people] tick so it’s not unlike that. No one does something evil just for the sake of doing something evil, the people who kidnap people don’t just kidnap people, they want something and it’s their job to figure out what they want and why they want it. It’s fascinating!
TTVJ: Aside from Maxine’s, whose storyline are you most excited for the viewers to see?
SG: Eric’s storyline! He’s a master manipulator, a really good guy, and a control freak which is fascinating, I think. He’s brilliant on the show, really incredible.
TTVJ: What shows are you currently loving on TV?
SG: I haven’t had a chance to watch TV! I do love UnReal, it’s one of my favorite shows. I watched The Night Of actually, that was fantastic.
Will you be tuning in to watch the fast-paced, heart-stopping new series? Let us know in the comments!
Ransom premieres Sunday, January 1 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS and Sunday, January 1 at 8:30 p.m. ET on Global.
Victoria loves all things TV! Whether it's binging Grey's Anatomy (for the 4th time) or talking Orphan Black plot lines with her Professors, she's fully in love with the medium. Victoria loves television so much that she is studying it at Monmouth University. If you love hearing long rants about why Luke and Lorelai are meant for each other you should follow Victoria on twitter @VictoriaNelli.