WonderCon: Trevor St. John on ‘Containment’, Playing Drunk and the Waiting Game of Auditions
Trevor St. John and the cast of The CW’s new series, Containment, were at WonderCon 2016 where they showed off the gripping pilot and talk with the press about the show.
The series, which also stars David Gyasi (Interstellar), Christina Marie Moses (Starship: Apocalypse, Starship: Rising), Chris Wood (The Vampire Diaries), Claudia Black (The Originals, Farscape), George Young (Casualty), Hanna Mangan Lawrence (Spartacus: War of the Damned) and Kristen Gutoskie (Beaver Falls), follows an epidemic that breaks out in Atlanta, leaving a large portion of the city quarantined and those stuck on the inside fighting for their lives.
‘Containment’ premieres on The CW on April 19th
Your character Leo is a disgraced journalist and is now running a blog during this whole epidemic. Can you tell us the evolution of your character?
Trevor St. John: When we discover him, his reputation has been damaged and he sort of clawing his way back up to into the mainstream and popularity and this story, he feels, is his golden ticket to get that.
The first thing he does is to try to befriend Lex (David Gyasi) to try to get on the inside, to get some information and to have a colleague. And he also has people on the inside, some friends, collecting information. And as the layers of the onion peel away, obviously, problems arise, things that he didn’t expect come up. And information that he didn’t foresee is made available to him and so it gets hairy. The more he digs, he gets in more danger. It’s quite a journey for him personally.
Leo seems a little duplicitous. How did you get into the mindset to play that?
Trevor St. John: I love those kind of characters, those are the best kind of characters. I love any character that you can’t say is good or bad. I love it when it’s a mixture because that’s how most people are, you know? The most interesting ones are the ones that are unpredictable and Leo is unpredictable.
So, I didn’t have to do anything. It was so well-written and it’s such a good part that I didn’t have to get in any mindset. You decide to let go and just play.
How fun was he to play?
Trevor St. John: It was great. It’s a bit of an antihero part, I guess? And you don’t know whether to like him, which I love. I’m not sure that you could call Leo a likable character and that’s only kind of characters I’m interested in.
What was your audition like for the show? Did you have a bunch of callbacks for the role?
Trevor St. John: Yeah. In TV, we have a callback and then you go and read for the network – what they call testing – the network, the production company, which is Warner Bros. So, you read or both of those entities and the suits, the higher-ups there. And then you wait. And wait.
Is that waiting terrible?
Trevor St. John: Oh, it’s the worst part. The worst part is waiting. In fact, it’s far worse to wait to find out if you got a job then it is to find out you didn’t get a job. Oh my gosh, I would much rather they told me right when I was there. Like, “No, you’re not right for the show. You’re not gonna get this.” “Thank you!” I’d leave happy. But you wait around for this stuff. It’s crazy making.
Is there a scene in an upcoming episode that you really enjoyed doing?
Trevor St. John: There’s a moment, I guess that none of you’ve seen, in episode six, that I get a little drunk and I’m hung over. Actually when you first discover me, I’m still a little drunk. That was a favorite. That was a lot of fun to play.
And it’s hard to play because I wasn’t drunk. [laughs] So, you have to do a little acting and I always try not to do any acting, you know? It’s one of those things where if you pull it off, it really works. I hope I did, we’ll see, but it was fun to do.