Fans of The Secret Circle had no idea Nick (Louis Hunter), who died earlier this season, would somehow return in last week’s episode. But Chris Zylka, who plays Nick’s brother Jake, had suspected it was coming for a while. “Louis secretly was telling Thomas [Dekker, who plays Adam] that they were trying to negotiate something for him to come back awhile ago, and that sparked complete joy in me because Louis and I had never met. Here we play brothers, and all I want to do is meet the guy to kinda get to know him so there was that sense that we knew each other before,” Zylka laughs. “He’s a huge Brando fan, and I love old films, so we definitely bonded over that.” As for Jake’s reaction to Nick’s return: “He’s gonna be typical Jake and cover up his real emotion with some secondary emotion, and then when push comes to shove and he has to show how he really feels, it’s pretty intense and heartfelt,” Zylka says.
Of course, Zylka couldn’t tell us exactly why Nick has returned. “I can tell you that he is more powerful than ever, and there’s a certain reason for his newfound power that’s really kind of exciting. That will come out in [tonight’s] episode.” We do know that Nick, like his old Circle, is searching for a crystal at the school – and it just happens to be prom night. Faye (Phoebe Tonkin) takes Jake as her date. ”Jake and Faye are finally getting together in a more romantic way instead of just always hooking up out of nowhere every couple of episodes,” Zylka says, laughing again. “That’s what’s nice about the ‘Prom’ episode is that you’ll see some real moments between the two of them instead of just that every-couple-episode hookup. They are, actually, real people. They do know each other. They do have conversations.” (Now we feel guilty for wanting to ask if there’s time for them to get it on again before the end of the season. “There’s always time for Jake and Faye to get it on,” he says.)
The synopsis for next week’s season finale, “Family,” says that after Faye is attacked by the Witch Hunters, Jake, Melissa (Jessica Parker Kennedy) and Adam set out to save her. What can he tease about that May 10 hour? ”Jake’s gonna have to make decision to protect himself or protect his Circle. In the finale, there are so many cliffhangers that I don’t even know where the character is going, to be honest. People are gonna be left in awe about what the hell is going on with these witches,” he says. “I was excited reading it. One of the most important things in creating a successful show, at least in my novice eyes, is really kinda just pissing off the audience every week in those last couple scenes, that last act, so they’re really genuinely upset that you’ve left them at a place where they don’t know what the hell is going on and they need more. I think the finale definitely does that in really fashionable style. It’s really great.” We will get some kind of resolution on the Blackwell (Joe Lando) mystery: “Blackwell is the new Jake. You never know if he’s telling the truth, if he manipulating everyone. Does he genuinely care for even his daughters? All of those questions will be answered in a huge, huge way in the finale,” Zylka promises.
While The CW has yet to announce whether The Secret Circle will return in the fall, Zylka will be busy promoting two films over the hiatus: The June 1 sequel Piranha 3DD and July 3’s The Amazing Spider-Man. “I actually saw Piranha 3DD – god, it’s so weird saying that – and it’s actually really surprising. It’s really good. It’s funny, it’s fun. And you actually want more when you see it,” he says. Piranha 3DDD? “It’s coming, it’s coming,” he jokes. “We’ve got a new bra size.”
As for his other big project, he costars as Peter Parker’s bully Flash Thompson in the Spider-Man reboot. “The shaved head’s weird, isn’t it?” he says of his buzz cut. “I did ADR for it, like, a couple of weeks ago, and I was like, ‘Oh, that’s a different look,’” he says. “All I can tease about that is that the big difference, in my opinion, from Sam Raimi’s version, is that Marc Webb’s seems a little more character-driven, and you will care for each and every character a bit more. Instead of just caring about Peter Parker and Spider-Man, you get close to each and every one.” So we’ll care about Flash? “Absolutely. There’s definitely some stuff in there where you see why he bullies.”
He’s also currently on the hunt for a new project to shoot over the show’s hiatus. “I get so antsy. When you’re working, you’re like, ‘Oh my god, I’m so tired.’ And then a hiatus starts, and you’re off for three days and you don’t know what to do with yourself. You’re never gonna have another job in your life, and you suck at acting,” he laughs. “Your world comes tumbling down pretty quickly.”
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