Born and raised in Elmira, Ontario, Lucas Bryant has made a name for himself in both Canada and the United States. Bryant currently stars as Nathan Wuornos on Syfy’s hit series Haven. Bryant has numerous television credits to his name, including Queer as Folk (2000) for Showtime, M.V.P. (2008) for SOAPnet and CBC, Sex, Love & Secrets (2005) for UPN, and CTV’s Bury the Lead (2002).
Lucas is not only a talented performer, he is a natural comedian and his humorous side was evident during Syfy’s Haven press conference Q&A call.
How are you feeling about how Audrey and Nathan’s relationship is changing?
I think a lot of fans got what they wanted this past episode – I mean a taste of it anyway. And then maybe some were horrified, but I hope there’s not too many of those. But yes I’m sorry to say I don’t see it progressing as easily as one might hope and realize. I mean there’s definitely going to be some roadblocks and speed bumps, I can’t and won’t tell you exactly what they are, and I don’t know the half of them. But yes I think that puts us on a trajectory that has potential to be lovely, but will probably inevitably be very difficult and potentially dangerous.
How can we get you to go on Twitter?
I’ve been asking myself that same question. I know I just got Emily and Erica to always forward me stuff – petitions to get me on there. And apparently this morning, I was named one of Perez Hilton’s sexiest men on TV. I would just like to say yes, I have been telling everyone this for years and finally it came true. I know, I’ve always known that the Hiltons are a big fan of mine. So that makes perfect sense.
I just hope that it’s not a typo, because it’s, “Lucas Bryant, one of the most sexist men on TV,” that would not be good. But, so I get the Twitter feeds if you will, I get information from the Twit machine. But no I have not done it yet. And I don’t know, I’m still on the fence about it, I can’t tell you what it’s going to be that would make me take the plunge. I’m just… …you know, I’m like a grandma.
Do you watch it? Do you watch your work?
Absolutely, I… Sadly I must admit I watch it, yes. Not sadly, I’m very proud of it. But I really like to watch my stuff over and over. I fast-forward through everyone else.
You know from the show runners, the writers about what might be in store for season three?
I don’t. I have completely given up trying to get my head around what the heck is going on here. There’s stuff that they want to keep from us. But then there’s also – I don’t necessarily want to know the things that Nathan doesn’t know. I enjoy it discovering it as we go, as he does. So I don’t know, no. I mean I hear some rumblings about potential storylines, but then I imagine those will all change as well in the writers room as they hash things out. So no, I’m as clueless as you. Not to suggest that you’re clueless, no.
What do you think about working at Syfy? Are you enjoying it, are you planning on doing more? Or do you prefer kind of (non-John with sheriff). I know you’re great with comedy.
Well, sure I would love to do comedy. I would love to do noir, I’d love to do everything. But I’m absolutely having a blast doing Sci-Fi. And I suppose it is that genre, but I don’t feel like – we’re not running around in space suits every week. And it is a pretty, sort of human story. So I feel like it’s pretty universal kind of themes. Yes there’s all sorts of weirdness going on, but I don’t feel like stuck in any particular genre, it feels, I think it’s very cool. I’m proud of its weirdness.
So I would love, yes I mean I’m talking with Syfy now about doing other stuff for them and with them. And I would – I’m definitely open to any and all possibilities within and outside of the genre. I’m just an actor and I love to do it all.
The network is really a fantastic place to be. They do take care of their own, and so there are some opportunities there that I’m definitely looking forward to.
How does the dynamic between Audrey and Chris impact the way Nathan feels about her?
Oh, yes well I suppose, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, Nathan is never too sure of himself. And so I guess that was just an example of what can happen when you wait. So I think things that have taken place over the last couple of episodes, have forced him to be a bit more forthcoming about where he stands and forced him to address how he feels about her. And I think that’s a good place for him to be because he’s a pleasure to play.
He’s wrestling with asserting himself, and being forthcoming, and the general effect that she’s had on him which is to push him to man up and so it’s really fun to be a sort of long uncomfortable guy, trying to step up.
We see a shot of Nicholas Campbell, can you talk a bit about where Nathan’s at, and where he winds up at the end of the season?
Yes, right. I guess that’s been leaked hasn’t it by Syfy themselves. Yes we get to see the chief or some version thereof in the second season finale. And thank God, I mean I was so excited for that. I love Nick, I think he’s a fantastic actor and person and a great character. So I’m really happy that he’s back, for this episode at least. And hopefully there’s potential for more. But yes that’s – well I don’t know that, I mean the conversation that Nathan and the chief have in the season finale is revealing.
But, how do I say this, it also doesn’t reveal everything that it could. So I believe there’s going to be large ramifications from it, which we won’t necessarily come to understand until God willing, season three, four or five. So it’s a big moment obviously for the character, and also for the show. But saying this, I wonder if people when they watch the show will be like, what the hell was Lucas talking about, because I didn’t see that. Let me just say that there’s more to their interaction than we necessarily experience now. Boy that’s a bit vague, isn’t it?
What keeps challenging you about the role of Nathan?
Oh wow. Well I guess – like I was saying before, I guess one of the most fun and challenging things to do is explore how he progresses as a man when he has so many socially awkward issues. On the one hand he’s like, totally comfortable in his role and relationships in the town. People, I think have generally a good feeling about him. And he’s a good guy, but he’s not terribly excellent at expressing himself.
And so any time that Nathan’s put in a awkward situation or often with Duke or with women or with his emotions, that is a real pleasure and challenge to work through.
What would you say is your favorite and least favorite characteristic of him?
Favorite and least favorite. Well, yes that does play into what I was saying. I like the fact that he’s like terribly reserved and somewhat uncomfortable in social interactions. But then at the same time, have the sense that he does have a great and sort of strange sense of humor, and more quirky and weird personality than we get to see all the time. Like his terrible dancing ability… which that was totally ridiculous to shoot and even more awkward to watch, but that was a lot of fun. That might also be my least favorite of Nathan’s characteristics is his terrible dancing.
But no I don’t, you know, there’s no part of him. I guess maybe what some viewers experience too, sometimes I just want him to pull the trigger. Not literally, but it’s like, man do something, tell her, do it, kiss her, step forward, you know, punch him, whatever. I mean he’s still sort of fighting them in self-imposed handcuffs.
If you could give Nathan one piece of advice, what would it be?
If I could give Nathan a piece of advice? Stop worrying so much and just go for it, man. And I guess that’s what happened a little bit at the end of 11, right? When he has that realization and he’s at the meeting, and he says to Vincent Dwight that sometimes taking risks pays off. So hopefully he learns that lesson, and that’s not just a moment of fleeting feeling for him. Because I think if we get to see him taking a lot more risks, that would be first of all dramatically exciting and then a lot of fun for me to play. But also great for him as a character.
When you’re doing the show and your ad libbing, do you ad lib much, or is it just off the top libbing the script?
I wouldn’t say much, but yes we do. And definitely more this year than last year which plays into I think just because that much more comparable. And also the writers gave us more freedom this year. They said if we do a version where we get the dialogue as written, stick to the script, then they, which is very kind of them, I think they’ve trusted us to play around with it a little bit as well.
If we find things in the moment that we think are funny or might be interesting, then go for it. And I’ve been really happy to see that, in the end they’ve been keeping a lot of that stuff.
What have you learned about yourself from this experience so far of being part of the cast of Haven?
Myself, well I’m just kind of like a block of wood. I don’t learn very much. No, it’s been interesting. I guess going into this I thought, well first of all it’s fantastic to be – just honored to be a part of the show, and able to do now two full seasons and hopefully many more of this show as an actor. Just being in front of the camera and getting to play with your friends in a comfortable, creative environment is so rewarding. And you learn so much about your artists in that way.
But I guess what’s been most interesting for me are the lessons I’ve learned doing this show are lessons that I didn’t necessarily foresee. And they’re simple things, like children’s books like important and easy things like, what a difference it makes to be a nice guy. Or how important it is to make people feel comfortable and welcome. Visiting actors on the set, how that can hugely positively affect the product. And so it’s kind of like going back to preschool, like the big lessons I’m learning now are those like simple, bottom line 10 Commandment things.
And I’m just realizing how important and easy that can be. Not like, hey I have to be this serious professional prick all the time, who takes myself incredibly seriously, especially now that I’m on a TV show. But just how important it is to have a good time and treat people well and that everyone benefits from that and including the creative nature of the show.
Have you thought about wearing multi-hats, and maybe directing and writing scripts for it, and producing? Have you thought about taking it all on as well? Or are you comfortable just in the role of being Nathan, and nothing more?
No, I’m definitely interested in those hats. And hopefully I will get the opportunity. I don’t foresee that happening next season, but if we get many more of this creative team that’s been very open to that – to those possibilities, and that’s a great thing about doing a show – a cable show as well. There are other opportunities to expand your career, and that’s something that I definitely am looking to take advantage of. I would love to be able to direct an episode eventually.
Is there any particular scene that you shot this season where you say, “Yes this is why I do what I do?”
That’s interesting. I guess there’s all sorts of scenes that I’ve said that for different reasons. But definitely one of the highlights is coming in the finale, the scene with the chief was really such a pleasure. Because he, Nick Campbell, is a giant of stage and screen. In Canada for sure, and then I know that he also has many fans in the states. But to be able to work with him is such a huge honor and thankfully it’s just like such a beautiful scene and to have him back after being out of the season for so long, it really was special.
Is there a characteristic that’s so complex that it had to take time for you to adjust that Nathan has?
Well sure I guess the overall characteristic of being reserved, someone that doesn’t wear his heart on his sleeve. It’s strange, because he kind of does in many nonverbal ways. So it was that, how to communicate the heart and soul of this guy that was so unwilling or unable to communicate it verbally. And that I think that just came with trust and experimentation. And then seeing it back and then after a while you’re like yes, this guy does make sense.
So now I think it’s a much more comfortable thing to portray. But like going into the second season when we started shooting the first episode, I remember thinking, aww man what was this guy like to begin with? I just stand still and that’s him? I just stand still and speak in simple sentences and very quietly and I’ll be him again? I remember being a bit nervous about that. But as soon as I did, I was like oh yes there he is.
Haven is actually based on Stephen King’s The Colorado Kid, what is your favorite King novel or film?
Misery I guess, both novel and film, I just like how twisted and like simple that story is.
If there was a remake, would you take on the role of Paul Sheldon, played by the amazing James Caan?
Yes, I would be Kathy Bates.
The episodes will premiere Tuesday, December 6 from 8-11PM (Eureka at 8PM, Warehouse 13 at 9PM and Haven at 10PM) during Syfy’s second annual Countdown to Christmas Week.