Get to Know The Tomorrow People Cast
By Lynn Barker
Starting October 9th on The CW network, you can check out a new series based on a popular, classic British show. “The Tomorrow People” focuses on a group of young folks who are the next step in human evolution and, just like all teens in high school, they are already working just to come of age and find their personalities. Having superpowers just complicates things but makes for a fun, action-packed ride for the audience.
The show stars Robbie Amell (Stephen Amell of “Arrow’s” cousin) as Stephen Jameson, Luke Mitchell as John Young, Peyton List as Cara Coburn (she was Emma Ross on the “Jessie” TV series), funny Aaron Yoo as Russell Kwon, “Lost’s” Mark Pellegrino as Jedikiah Price and Madeleine Mantock as Astrid Finch.
Here is the buzz straight from the cast:
Q: Robbie, is it pure coincidence that you and your cousin Stephen Amell of “Arrow” are both stars in CW series? How did that happen?
- Robbie: I don't know. It's insane. It was partly luck and I'm sure it didn't hurt when I started auditioning for the show. But I had worked with (the producer) on "Brothers & Sisters" a long time ago, and he helped me get my green card (to work in the U.S.) I e-mailed him for a letter of referral.
- He wrote the letter for me, and then I got an e mail saying, "I'm going to bring you in for my show." I went in and I had a few auditions for playing John originally. Then, I tested for (the role of) Stephen and here I am.
- Aaron: Just so you know, I'm also changing my name to Amell. I'm in the process for that. I hear it helps.(laughter).
Q: Peyton, other than playing Lois Lane's sister, it seems like you've mostly done very realistic roles, things that are very grounded. What's it like for you to step into a fantasy world?
- Peyton: It's different, but it's that much more exciting because it's something new for me. And I love it. I love the genre. And it makes you feel really empowered when you have these superpowers and you're doing these special effects and these stunts and these fights. It's exciting to go to work when you have all that in front of you.
Q: Do you find that having done so many more down-to-earth roles kind of grounds you and now you can expand into a fantasy realm?
- Peyton: Sure. It's also I feel like on this show we also have a lot of character-driven stories so that sort of comes into play as well as the fantasy and the sci-fi side of it. These characters are very much like real people and dealing with kind of extreme circumstances, but they're trying their best to handle and make the right decisions in what they're facing, so I'm enjoying that part of it as well.
- Aaron: Except that Peyton walks at an Olympian speed walk. There was a point when we were shooting where I turned to Peyton and I go, "Are you at top speed?" She's like, "What?" I was like, "Could you walk any faster than you're walking right now?" She's like, "Probably." I was like, "Okay. Just don't. If you walk any faster than you're walking right now, I'll have to jog and it will not look cool. (laughter)
Q: For Mark, how long do you think we're going to have to go into the series before the other characters realize that your character Jedikiah is actually the hero of this story even if he’s sinister and maniacal?
- Mark: (laughs) I consider myself the hero of the story right now. Yeah, I always think that the characters I'm playing are justified in their actions and heroic in nature. And I'm protecting the human race, so as far as I'm concerned, you’ve got to do dirty things sometimes to protect four, five, six billion people or however many folks are populating the planet.
Q: Makes sense. Madeleine, your bio says that you are classically trained in one of Britain's top drama schools. How did that prepare you for this project?
- Madeleine: I think the thing about drama school is that it can only prepare you so much. You know, you don't get to go on a film set or a TV set. It certainly gives you different skills but I don't think anything can prepare you for what it's actually like. Also, I think it's very dependent on who you're working with for the sort of experience you have. Luckily we all get along. That's good. I'm ecstatic when I wake up and go, “Oh, I get to go work today and see everybody”.
Q: Luke, your character in the pilot, on the one hand, sees his character as the possible savior, but there also seems to be an underlying awareness that he may be a romantic threat. How is it playing having some respect for this guy that you also might want to punch out?
- Luke: Difficult. It makes it a lot of fun to play because potentially he could be the key to either finding his father or being a savior himself for the Tomorrow People. So it does make it challenging to keep the ego aside and keep your emotions in check.
Q: Luke and Aaron, how did you learn the fight scenes for this? With the supernatural stuff thrown in, it’s pretty unique.
- Aaron: Well, first, they just let us beat each other up, and get out our personal aggressions on each other. But I spent some time in the hotel during the pilot, trying to figure out what a telekinetic show would look like. And after making myself look like some kind of weird Tai Chi enthusiast in the hotel gym for, like, an hour, you realize that the people at “Street Fighter” (their stunt guys) spend a lot of time thinking about it. There is a lot of research and knowledge in the field, let's say, over the years.
Q: But you have fight training experience. You weren't starting cold.
- Aaron: Yeah. I grew up in Tae Kwon Do. I have a secondary black belt, but, on the first day of fight training, we started with me because I had a little bit more experience. And Peyton stood there and watched me go through a bunch of moves and then was just, like, "God, now I have to step it up." And Luke came in after two hours and was just, like, "What is happening in here?" And then everyone just came and brought it, you know. And the fight you guys do in Episode 2 is just sick.
- Robbie: And the nice thing is, we get to steal the fight choreographers and stunt coordinators from “Arrow.” We are sharing all of them.
Q: Robbie, do you still take classes in Muay Thai and what exactly is that?
- Robbie: Muay Thai is Thai boxing. It's like kickboxing with your elbows and knees. But, no, I don't take it anymore because, if I get punched in the face, I'm in a lot of trouble. The experience of it does help, and I'll work a punching bag the same way, but I can't spar anymore. As Aaron knows, if you are sparring and somebody ends up clipping you in the face, your nose, your eye, you can be swollen for enough days to really screw up production.
Q: Mark, you were Joshua on the “Lost” TV series. Do you still see members of that cast? Is it a sense of pride that you did that show?
- Mark: Yeah, it is a sense of pride, and I wish I saw them more. But, every once in a while, I run into somebody while I'm working, and we say hi and give each other a hug. That’s kind of the poignant nature of our business is that you get really close to people, and you feel like a family and then "Bye." And then you are living your lives and doing your job, and then you come together again at some point in the future. But it was really, really an honor to work on that show and really good folks.
The Tomorrow People premieres October 9th on The CW!