The ABC series Somewhere Between is a suspenseful thriller that follows Laura Price (Paula Patton), a local news producer who’s helping the police hunt down a serial killer. After the killer strikes someone in Laura’s own life, a twist of fate allows her to relive the week prior to the string of murders, giving her a chance to change events, but also knowing that doing so will require an ultimate sacrifice. And helping her on that mission is Nico Jackson (Devon Sawa), a former cop turned private detective whose fate is intertwined with Laura’s.
During this 1-on-1 phone interview with Collider, actor Devon Sawa talked about why Somewhere Between appealed to him, his love of cliffhangers, the mix of genres, how close it follows the original Korean series that it’s inspired by, why he was drawn to this character, how much Nico evolves by the end of the final episode, sharing this experience with Paula Patton, and what he looks for in a project.
Collider: How did Somewhere Between come about? Was this just a script that came your way, or were you actively looking for something, at the time?
DEVON SAWA: This was a script that came my way. I was gearing up for pilot season and looking for something good, and this came in before pilot season. It was one of those summer series. You never know with summer series because they’re hit or miss, but I read it and I met with (show creator) Stephen Tolkin, and I really liked Stephen Tolkin. He’s just a smart guy. The way he explained it really peaked my interest, and Paula [Patton] was attached. All the stars just aligned. It’s not trying to be anything other than pure entertainment. That’s all it is. You can grab some popcorn, sit down and watch this show, and we’re going to entertain you. You don’t have to do anything else.
When you read this script, what was it that most appealed to you?
SAWA: It reminded me a little bit of Final Destination, which I had done a long time ago. I liked all the sequels to Final Destination, and I like that whole concept of fate. And I’m a huge fan of cliffhangers. When I put a show on like this, or something like The Night Of, I’ll binge watch the whole thing. I love cliffhangers. All of the crazy cliffhangers and the roller coaster of it appealed to me. You just never know where it’s gonna go, and it switches up.
This series is a drama, but it’s also part family story, part cop show, part thriller, part murder mystery and part supernatural. Was that mix of genres also part of the appeal?
SAWA: Yeah. We can go out to the sci-fi people and say that it’s sci-fi, but it’s got everything for everybody. It’s unique. [The original series] was a huge hit over in Korea, so we gave it a whirl and we did our best.
Does this series follow the Korean series pretty closely?
SAWA: I wanted to know the outcome of my character, but I promised the showrunner that I would not look or watch the show. But by Episode 7 or 8, I went to Wikipedia, and then Wikipedia directed me to where some American critics reviewed it and did week by week recaps. So, I started reading the recaps and I found out what happened to my character, and I went back to the showrunner and asked him about it. He wanted me to be surprised by the end, but I had to cheat and find out. It’s a great ending!
What did you most identify with, when it came to Nico, and why do you think audiences feel a connection to him?
SAWA: He’s given up. Life has dealt him a shitty hand and he gave up. He’s basically going through his days just getting by. And then, fate comes along and he’s gotta put on his big boy pants and deal with some stuff. That’s what drew me to the character. It’s this 180 that he does. In the beginning, he’s a slacker who barely can feed his fish. And then, he’s helping this woman save her daughter, he’s dealing with his brother, and he’s taking this huge journey. He’s grown up.
Does Nico get to a point where he wants redemption, or is that not something that he’s looking for?
SAWA: He wants redemption. He’s trying to figure things out and he’s in it to win it, by the end.
Nico and Laura have been through so much, since their lives started over. What does he think about the fact that their lives became so connected, especially considering who she is and that she already had a connection to his family?
SAWA: It’s strange, everything moves so quickly and they keep getting information so quickly that they don’t have time to think about that. With the inevitable, “Will Nico and Laura get together?,” we kept asking the showrunner about whether that would happen, and he was like, “They’re not thinking about that! There’s too much going on!” All this stuff is happening, and we’re just dealing with it.