In a few weeks, season two of the Emmy winning Netflix original series Hemlock Grove will premiere. After cleaning house behind the scenes since season one, Hemlock Grove finds itself with a new showrunner, new writers and directors, and even a few new cast members. In preperation for season two, Nerdist traveled to Toronto to visit the set of the genre show and had the opportunity to speak with the cast and crew, including actor Bill Skarsgård who plays Roman Godfrey. We asked Skarsgård about the differences between season one and season two, how Roman has changed and where things stand between Roman and Godfrey matriarch Olivia (played by Famke Janssen). Fair warning! Spoilers for season one of Hemlock Grove will follow!
To start, when we last left Roman after the events of the season one finale, how have things changed for the character? Said Skarsgård, “I like where they’re going because my character is just going from that old house that was his family’s house and is doing everything that he can to become his own person. A grown up. Buying his own house. And it’s the complete opposite to the house you saw last year. It’s super modern.” Skarsgård added, “[H]e’s taking his new job very seriously. He wants to do well. I think in a way he looked up to his dad for creating this whole thing. He doesn’t want to pursue his mother’s legacy in terms of becoming this creature, he’s still fighting that. He wants to become a serious businessman and an entrepreneur in biotech. He’s trying hard to do as good as he can.”
Try as he might, fans of Hemlock Grove won’t find Roman having an easy time battling his upir-ism as the actor explained of his character, “He’s a junkie this year. He needs to drink blood, and it’s an addiction for him. Last year he was figuring out what he was. But now he’s an addict. He needs to drink blood. And the whole mythology of it I don’t know if it’s… he can eat. He can drink. It’s not the vampire thing, it’s more of an addiction. But he doesn’t want to. So it’s the moral dilemma of how can you drink blood without hurting people?”
Finally, Roman finds himself in a fairly lonely place when it comes to season two in regards to both his best friend Peter and his mother Olivia. Skarsgård elaborated, revealing, “He’s completely isolated and super lonely. There’s no one in his life anymore, you know? Last year he did have Shelley, the most important person in his life. Losing her… and then Peter was the first real friend that he ever had, someone that also saw him for what he was. They understood each other at that heightened level for what they are. And he’s gone and Letha’s gone and he’s just got his mother.” Skarsgård continued about the Olivia character, saying the two still aren’t on in a great place. “Yeah, they’re not really talking. And, you know, I think Roman really despises his mother and also the part of himself that is like her. So he doesn’t want to be anything like her. And she still wants him to pursue the destiny of becoming this creature. Like I said, I think that’s a major difference from last year. Now he’s struggling with this physical addiction to blood and he’s coming up with all of these creative ideas to try to solve this.”
From everything that we know, the second season of Hemlock Grove promises to be amplified, from the blood to the gore to the sex and everything in between. Season 2 of the Emmy winning series Hemlock Grove starring Famke Janssen, Bill Skarsgård, Landon Liboiron, Dougray Scott, Joel de la Fuente and Tiio Horn with ten episodes only on Netflix on Friday, July 11th at 12:01 AM PT.