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New York Comic Con 2013: <i>Beauty and the Beast</i> and <i>Reign</i> Stars Talk Love and History

The ridiculously attractive stars and the creators of The CW's Beauty and the Beast and Reign met the press at this past weekend's New York Comic Con and here's some of what they had to say:

Jay Ryan on Why He's Psyched for the Beast's Second Season
The Beast is completely reworked in this season. There were many things in Season 1 that I wasn't able to add to the character because it either didn't fit or wasn't the right timing, but this season we've done a complete overhaul from his physicality to the prosthetics that I wear. And our new showrunner wrote into the story that he's been taken by his makers and turned into the super-soldier he was always intended to be. So I have much more of a purpose in the first few episodes anyway. He's got an objective and he's a very different Vincent; I wanted him to be dangerous and spontaneous and very different from what we saw in Season 1.

Kristin Kreuk on Catherine's Season 2 Growth… or Lack Thereof
Catherine is failing at her job this season because she's obsessed with Vincent, so Tess has kind of taken over everything to do with work. Also everyone in the office is working on Beast cases. So her life is in disarray and she's just a wreck. And since Vincent has amnesia, we can do "Will they or won't they" again! [Laughs] There's just a soul connection between the two characters, but it's a dangerous situation for Catherine and he's trying to get her out of the way and is drawn to her at the same time. It won't be as easy for the fans to watch. It's more dramatic. Season 2 is pretty unpredictable that way.

Creators Jennifer Levin and Sherri Cooper on the Central Romance
Cooper: We don't think of it as a "Will they or won't they" show. It's "They are." That's what's different about it: It's a romance and we're trying to embrace that. Lots of TV shows are "Will they or won't they" and we thought, "Let's challenge ourselves and see what we do when they know they are."
Levin: So they're together. They might be apart for a while, but we're not regretful. We're thrilled they did that.
Cooper: Last year, at Episode 13, when they finally kissed, it was like, "All right, enough!" What are they waiting for? In real life, they would have gone at it.
Levin: Our barometer is always, "What would we do?" And we totally would have slept with him! We're always in the writers' room admitting that we're sluts. [Laughs]

Levin and Cooper on the Season 2 Improvements
Cooper: There's a comfort in knowing what your show is and knowing what's good. And also having the time to say, here's what we did badly next season and what we want to fix and do better. We always try to make it better. We're optimists.
Levin: Making Vincent more beastly was a big change, because towards the end of least season, we felt that he was just a dude in his warehouse waiting. And we had a really hard time thinking, "What does he want? What is he doing?" It's hard to write stories when you don't know what the character wants.
Cooper: And if it's only Catherine, you're like 'Really?' We also now have a mythology that makes sense and is super-cool, which all our cases hang off of. There end up being crimes for cool reasons, which we'll end up revealing and Cat is directly influenced because she has a way into stopping Vincent. So the cases are always about Vincent and Catherine.
Levin: We wanted to reinvision what the Beast looked like. He used to have a big chin piece and that was taken off, because it didn't make any sense! Why did he have to have a bigger chin?! So we went through everything and thought about what we wanted to do better.

The Reign Stars on the Show's Mixture of Period and Modern Touches
Adelaide Kane (Mary): Our show is such a hybridization; the dialogue is sort of a mix of more modern terminology and an archaic way of speaking. The accent helps, because it puts you in mind of that period, but we can't talk in iambic pentameter or old English, because nobody will understand what we're saying. So it's an interesting mix. Mary is closer to a modern woman than a lot of the other characters are because she does have more power. She has freedom in a way a lot of the other characters can't, so I think she's the closest thing to a modern woman on the show.
Toby Regbo (Francis): I brought that up when we did the pilot, and asked our director Brad Silberling if he wanted there to be an element of modernity in terms of performance, because in every other aspect of the show, there's a youthful and modern feel. And he said no, don't play it any way like it as anything other than that time and place.
Torrance Coombs (Bash): But speaking personally, I don't go out of my way to act in a period fashion. I'm not making contemporary gestures with my hands, but I'm also not going out of my way to be period. It's a middle ground.
Regbo: We got this massive lesson on bowing when he first started, about who would bow and when. And everyone would walk out of the room bowing, so we scrapped that at the first opportunity. There were certain dynamics back then that just don't translate today. Like, nobody could ever have their back to the king, which, from a perspective where you're trying to shoot a scene is impossible.

Adelaide Kane on the Challenges of Playing a Character Whose Fate is Well Known
It wasn't difficult at all, because the character isn't static. She could have been a completely different person when she was younger. She didn't start out that woman -- she became that woman through her circumstances. The character I'm playing has been informed by the character Laurie and the writers have written for me and the historical take on her personality. I did quite a bit of research on her, because I wanted to know what she was like. And then there's that dose of myself I put into it. Hopefully, it's relatable. I hope people understand what she's going through and connect.

Creator Laurie McCarthy on the Influence of Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette
What I took from Sofia Coppola -- both from that movie and also her movies in general -- is that she did anything she wanted to just to make it good. When you're making a period, you're not actually mimicking the period, you're mimicking what was done before. Anytime I would think about how period dramas were done before. And I didn't want to do that. I wanted to feel inside the experience rather than outside the experience, so I used music that would make you swell with emotion as opposed to standing back and thinking, "Is that really what they played in Elizabethan times?" And we'll keep the contemporary music going forward. Reign has been compared to A Knight's Tale as well and in that film, you imagine that the characters would have heard the contemporary score. In our case, the characters aren't hearing it --it's scored for the audience. In general, I wanted it to feel like a castle on a Tuesday afternoon at 11 in the morning. That's the note I gave every department -- to see how they actually lived.

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