Grimm’s David Giuntoli talks characters, co-stars and fans

“I think people always love fantasy,” says Grimm’s lead star David Giuntoli on why he thinks the show has been such a big hit. “I think people like to be afraid. I remember being just so afraid of what was out there and not knowing what it was. It’s nice for a show to reawaken that.”

With a premise that relies on the idea that the Grimm fairytales are in fact real, the series follows Portland detective Nick Burkhardt, David’s character on the show. After being told that he is a descendent of the Grimm family he discovers that he has inherited the ability to see mystical creatures for what they really are. With the series drawing to a close in the UK we have seen Nick dealing with many things, such as fighting with a Spinnetod and combating the advances of a Dämonfeuert; all the while he is struggling to keep his being a Grimm a secret from his girlfriend Juliette.

The series was picked up for a second season, which is currently in the process of shooting. David managed to spare a few minutes during May’s MCM Expo to answer a few questions during a roundtable interview, chatting about his character, his co-stars, what to expect in the second season, and interesting fans.

Of his character Nick, David revealed that his research largely consisted of “some cop work,” as well as asking a lot of questions to the show’s creators, Jim Kouf and David Greenwalt. “I went to some precincts in America, but aside from that you have to make up a past for this guy,” said David. “I always thought he had a childhood where he was constantly moving around with his aunt, and he wanted a stable adulthood. He got a good job, he had a good girl, and he liked what he had. Then this new thing is thrust upon him,” says David of Nick’s ability to see supernatural creatures. “I think he’s in denial and just constant befuddlement in the beginning, trying to hold it together. Things would happen around him and he was very passive in letting it happen and trying to sort out these new rules.”

Describing Nick as “pretty vanilla” at the start of the first season, David enjoyed his character’s progression, saying, “I like seeing him get darker as the series goes on, and towards the end of the series it certainly happens that way. I like that his heart is true and I like that he wants to protect those he loves, but I also love watching Nick start to enjoy his new role and the power that he has because of it… and exploit that.”

With Nick getting “darker” he mentioned that from reading the scripts of the first two episodes for the second season, he could tell that the show was already starting to feel like “a different thing,” saying, “I know that I will continue to hone my ‘Grimmstincts’ as I like to call them, and become a lot more of an aggressive guy.” Of the second season, he also revealed that, “We will be learning a little bit about the Captain.” This being Nick’s secretive boss, Sean Renard, played by Sasha Roiz. We’re not quite sure what his intentions are, but according to David viewers will find out “where he came from and also, maybe the grander scheme of things; who’s in control, the power structures in the world, the world order really.”

“Silas Weir Mitchell is the guy who plays Monroe and he’s brilliant,” said David of his co-star. “We get on really well, but our relationship as characters, it went from this tentative ‘When are you gonna kill me?’ kind of thing,” with Nick initially not quite sure if he could trust a Blutbad creature. “We kind of want to keep some of that alive a little bit. We never want to get too comfortable with each other, because his nature could come out at some point. So I’m always a little on edge around him. He always is slightly on edge around me. But yeah, we’re very good buddies.”

David also had high praise for Reggie Lee, who plays Sergeant Wu. “It’s seemingly this small character, but he’s such a good actor,” he said. “You don’t even notice these things. He brings such a cool life to this character that’s not fully developed yet at all. When you see it on screen you take it as a given, but those are just words on a page; it’s very little and he created a great persona around that.”

David was then asked about any interesting fan encounters. “First of all they’re die hard fans,” he said. “They’re smart fans and they’re wonderful. But I think they would hate if I didn’t call them strange! Like, the stranger the better!” He then went on to reveal an odd encounter while on the set in Portland, Oregon. “I was having dinner once with someone from our cast, at night, totally not working, and someone crosses outside. I’m watching through the window and it’s just a person in a business suit with a giant wolf head! So they must have seen us and just wanted to have this little moment!”

The season finale of Grimm will be broadcast in the UK on Watch on Monday 9th July at 9pm.

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