With the first season of Strike Back behind us, the show’s ever growing fan base is already gearing up for season two. But for actors Philip Winchester and Amanda Mealing, the show’s success were never a sure thing.
“When you’re in the middle of filming, you’re so caught up in the day to day that you just never know,” said Winchester. “That’s why it’s really cool to see people who get it.”
Filmed on location in Hungary and South Africa, the series has been described as a gritter version of 24, with out the constraints of the real-time format and network sensors. And unlike its predecessor, which tended to lean toward the ridiculous, Strike Back and its host of former special forces consultants strive to maintain a gritty realism within the action.
“Action (shows) can be a little bit fairy tale, but we strive to keep it real,” added Mealing. “It’s also incredibly topical.”
As the stars noted, Osama bin Laden was killed by a special forces team while the first season was being filmed, a fact that helped to pique interest in the subject matter.
“People want to know who (special forces soldiers) are,” said Winchester. “People are curious.”
“Also, the bombs and the boobs don’t hurt.”
For viewers curious about season two, I regret to report that the plot is still top secret, even to the actors themselves. During our interview, Mealing recounted her costar’s comically futile attempt to get a look at next season’s scripts. But what we do know is that the bulk of the series will continue to be shot in South Africa, including both Johannesburg and Cape Town. More importantly, with most of the groundwork laid in season one, season two promises to delve more into the lives and back-stories of the individual characters.
But regardless of how season two takes shape, it’s clear that both actors are just happy to be along for the ride.
“During filming, we’re in hysterics, jumping out of helicopters with buildings crumbling around us,” said Winchester. I can’t beleive we get paid to play ‘Cowboys and Indians’ on steroids.”