We’re less than a week away from the season 2 return of the highly anticipated FOX series Prodigal Son, which is perfect timing for Paley Center’s first selection for the 2021 Paley Front Row Presented by Citi series: FOX’s ‘Prodigal Son’ Season Two Preview. The conversation features Tom Payne, Michael Sheen, Bellamy Young, Lou Diamond Phillips, Halston Sage, Keiko Agena, Aurora Perrineau, and Frank Harts alongside executive producers, writers, and showrunners Chris Fedak and Sam Sklaver during which they divulge some juicy season 2 details!
Spoiler warning: This interview includes references to the events of season 1 of Prodigal Son and some sneak peeks of season 2. Read at your own risk!
Fedak and Sklaver tackled the tough question of how COVID has affected the show, sharing that they had already filmed the season 1 finale, so the only issue was filming two episodes worth of drama in one. On returning to set, Sklaver elaborates, “We really just came back right in the groove. It’s very difficult with the precautions were taking and the safety measures, but it’s not showing up on screen. Our show looks like our show and feels like our show, it’s a testament to the actors and our crew.”
Payne also addressed how they handle day to day filming with the new protocols, “You kind of have to walk to set and really know what your relationship are and how those scenes would generally go between those characters, which definitely helps us a lot. Especially with my character that’s all over the map in every single scene, it’s helpful that we have a rhythm with each other as characters that we can fall back into.”
While discussing Dani and Gil’s father/daughter relationship continuing to develop in season 2, Phillips divulged that Dani “does literally flip me at one point, just right over a table.” We can’t wait to see what that’s all about!
Speaking of Gil, Bellamy spilled that their relationship “doesn’t disappoint with where we come back.” Phillips elaborated, sharing that it’s complicated and, “I know that a lot of the Prodigies out there ship Gilica [ship name for Gil and Jessica] early on, but it would take the air out of the balloon if we were all happy wonderful date night kind of people. That’s not going to happen.”
Lou also spoke on Gil’s recovery, “Gil’s recuperation is quick. We don’t pick up the day after, which is nice. There’s definitely some rehabilitation that has to happen, but it’s nice because it sets up other plot lines that will be threaded throughout the season. It was good to give us that time to do all of those storylines.”
What about JT? It seems he’ll be getting a promotion, albeit temporarily while Gil is recovering, “He’s taking on new responsibility this season as Head of Major Crimes,” shared Harts, “He’s a guy who likes to keep his head down and do his job, so this newfound situation with Ainsley and the media is a bit uncomfortable, but I think it’s great to see a guy like this in the world take over that temporary position.”
It seems Martin will complete his bingo card of Malcolm’s team. “As you’ll see this season, they let me roam around a little bit more,” said Sheen. “I even got to do a scene with Keiko last week, so that’s it, I’ve worked with everyone!” If you think that interaction is going to be fantastic, you’d be right. On that scene, Fedak shared, “Post production literally called us to say ‘we just did the funniest scene we’ve ever had, we were all dying’ so just know, in episode 4 there’s something amazing coming in that.”
Of course the panel wouldn’t be complete without a nod to costume designer Katy Riley for her excellent dressing of every character. For season 2, Payne shared that thanks to COVID there is actually a shortage of suits in the world, so the costume team had to get creative. “We’ve had some really good [suits] this year, which is nice, but a few more sweaters underneath, we’ve been mixing it up a little bit.” Lou did forbid Payne from venturing into the turtleneck place, those are all his!
Perrineau shared that season 2 special effects are still fantastic and had her “taking pictures but at the same time gagging” with a certain head removal scene thats fans have seen in promos.
Payne might have had our favorite quote when asked about just how much farther Malcolm can go:
“The best thing about season 2 is that he spent the whole of season 1 trying for his father to not have control over him, and now his father is the only person in the world who knows the secret of what happened with him and Ainsley in the last season. So he’s the only person in the world that he can talk to about it, so it’s his absolute worst nightmare. As much as he wants to try and have control and he will be doing that, there are still things that he needs to talk to his dad about and that’s just the worst situation, but hes forced to be in it.”
So what can we expect in season 2? “We already told you that Keiko will be inside the walls at Claremont,” said Fedak “In our premiere episode we do begin on a ledge and we actually shot it on a real ledge in Manhattan. The first episode back will have a bit of everything, it’s exciting, and for those people who are obsessed with the secrets and what happened next, we don’t hold back. We got a lot of things coming your way, so if you’re waiting for answers they’re coming.” Sklaver also added, “Like Lou said, they’re coming quick. There’s very few things that are subtle about this show, it’s fast and furious.”
Check out the full interview here and be sure to catch the season 2 premiere of Prodigal Son on Tuesday, January 12 at 9/8 C on FOX!