'The Event' stars Jason Ritter and Sarah Roemer discuss mid-season finaleby jmaloni
Behind the Screens with Joshua Maloni
"The Event" is taking a short break following tonight's mid-season finale (9 p.m., NBC). Now that we sort of know what the event is, or at least who was behind the attempt to kill President Elias Martinez (Blair Underwood) and kidnap lovers Sean Walker (Jason Ritter) and Leila Buchanan (Sarah Roemer), the Peacock Network is giving showrunners a little extra time to flesh out the back story.
With the basic premise established -- aliens are here on Earth, they look like humans, and some have evil intentions -- the second half of "The Event" will try and connect the show's main characters. While each is linked to the alien activity, the quest for understanding is taking place across many different fronts.
"I do think that three's been a lot of setting up in this first half-season," Ritter says. "And, you know, it's all going to start mixing it up. They're going to start mixing it up in the last 12 episodes."
President Martinez, set to release the alien detainees held for decades in a Mount Inostranka facility, was targeted by a plane flown by Leila's father, Michael (Scott Patterson) -- himself the target of bad guys (the free aliens). In the process, Leila and her sister, Samantha, were kidnapped, and Sean was framed for murder.
The wicked aliens behind all of these acts have targeted the president for his act, and Leila and her sister for some as-yet-unknown experiment that saps youth and vitality.
In tonight's cliffhanger, "Leila makes a discovery about one of the cast members that is a stunning revelation that will change the way she views everything," Ritter teases.
Whatever it is, Ritter and Roemer, whose characters are now on the lam, will be the last to know.
"I think out of all of the actors, we know the least about what's going forward," Ritter says.
His costars, those thesps portraying aliens, received a little more information with their initial character dossiers. Ritter, on the other hand, "I meet up with Sarah every day, and we just kind of jump off into the unknown ... and it's exciting," he says.
For Roemer, this lack of details makes her job far more exciting.
"It's kind of nice being in the dark and see(ing) how it unfolds along with everybody else," she says. "And it does keep things interesting and it is nice. Only, you know, we do -- we only really know what our characters know and I think there's something nice about that."
Though both roles are subject to the will of "The Event" writers, each actor is content -- thus far -- with the evolution of the characters.
"Yeah. I mean I, you know, I'm excited to -- I'm excited for the next half of the season to see how more of our stories start interconnecting," Ritter says. "I think we've been on our own little Sean and Leila story and that's been so much fun. And I really have loved, you know, watching both of these characters transition from sort of innocence in the world to, you know, kicking a little bit more ass.
"But it's been an interesting journey. I completely was blindsided several times during the season. I mean, I did not think that I would -- that Sean would find (a kidnapped) Leila in episode five. I really had been thinking about that as maybe a season-long problem.
"And so it was really exciting to be -- to make an assumption about where the show was going and have the rug pulled out from me over and over and over again. And next episode, (tonight's) episode 10, is really exciting and takes everything up several notches. So that was a good one to read."
"I never really know what to expect," Roemer adds. "And I also -- same as Jason -- I thought I would probably be apart for the whole season. And it is, you know, nice to kind of be surprised episode-to-episode with what's to come and what's coming up soon. It's got me even more curious as to -- I mean there's just ... the next few episodes are really big, huge things happening, which I want to talk about but I can't.
"And yeah, I think it's -- I've really enjoyed watching the show up to this point and how everything's been unfolding and knowing a little bit where it's going.
"I can't wait. I can't wait to get started on the second half."