As the warm-weather season settles in, Anna Wood doesn’t mind adding extra heat.
The actress plays lawyer Jamie Sawyer, whose cases are marked by her steamy mutual flirtation with opponent Roy Rayder (Cam Gigandet), as the CBS drama “Reckless” premieres Sunday, June 29. The first episode of the series — filmed on location in Charleston, S.C. — was directed by Catherine Hardwicke, who also worked with Gigandet on the first “Twilight” movie.
“It’s got the kind of addictive quality and sexiness and scandal of a really solid summer read, except it’s being acted out before your eyes,” Wood tells Zap2it. “This is one of my first jobs, so the director could have been anybody and I would have been beside myself … but the fact that it was Catherine Hardwicke was a really big gift, also that it was a woman who was setting the tone for the whole show.
“I don’t think female sexuality is dealt with in as truthful a way as it should be a lot of times,” notes Wood. “Having a lady as the captain of our ship helped being that home.”
Dana Stevens (“City of Angels”) is the creator and an executive producer of “Reckless,” and Wood believes they’ve become “sort of sisters. I feel like we’re the character’s parents, She has been an open and passionate collaborator, for sure.”
Giant fans in courthouse hallways and soda cans held to necks indicate how literally hot “Reckless” is meant to be. “We’re pushing boundaries in TV in general right now,” Wood reasons. “I’m a big TV fan myself, and I’m amazed at the things people are covering.
“Also, I think that because cable has more of an opportunity to explore without boundaries, it’s in the (broadcast) networks’ best interest to step up to the plate. There were times we were filming when we were like, ‘Is this OK? Is this going to make the cut? Is this even legal?’ ”
CBS is embracing the steaminess of summer with its new series, RECKLESS, a soapy drama that follows City Attorney Roy Rayder (Cam Gigandet) and defense attorney Jamie Sawyer (Anna Wood) as they bicker — and banter — their way through cases…including the season-long arc of a former police officer, Lee Anne Marcus (Georgina Haig), who is suing the Charleston PD.
To get a little more dish about what’s to come, I sat down with Wood to talk RECKLESS season 1…
How does it feel to have the RECKLESS premiere right around the corner, especially since you wrapped production on the entire season months ago?
Anna Wood: I had such a good experience filming the show, that it’s wonderful to know there will be physical evidence out there that it wasn’t just a dream I had for six months. We made a show! And I’m really proud of it, so I’m really looking forward to the world seeing it.
There’s a little anxiety, because especially in this day and age, it’s hard to tell what will happen with your show. But I believe in it, and I’m excited to see what happens with it.
What can you share about who Jaime is and what she’ll be up to in the first season?
AW: Jamie Sawyer is from Chicago. She’s in Charleston, working as a lawyer. She’s a bit of a fish out of water.
When we meet her, she’s taking on this client, Lee Anne Marcus, who is suing the city of Charleston and the Charleston police department for sexual harassment and wrongful termination. So she takes on this massive case in the first episode, and she finds herself going head-to-head in the courtroom with Roy Rayder, who is played by Cam Gigandet. And he throws her off her game a little bit. He’s not anything she’s used to: he’s a Southern gentleman, he’s good at his job, he’s dashingly handsome. And she finds herself struggling between maintaining professionalism and acting on personal feelings.
Jamie also has a boyfriend –
AW: She does have a boyfriend. That whole thing. [Laughs]
How does that triangle develop this season?
AW: Well, Adam Rodriguez, who plays Preston Cruz, I think Preston and Jamie find each other because they’re kind of the only two out-of-towners in the circle of people we’re looking at. And I think they keep each other grounded, help each other, and remind each other of the outside world. And they’re from a similar part of the country, so they have a lot of things in common. He is also a total beefcake.
Between Adam and Cam, your costars are definitely not unattractive.
AW: I know! [Joking] It’s hard.
[Preston] is a really good man. Or so we think. Like so many of the characters, it’s hard to say who’s great, who’s bad. Even our main characters do questionable things at times. So I think she’s struggling between being a good person and staying with the man she’s with, or acting on a whim and a passion that’s she’s not used to acting on. Being true to her heart or being true to her duty, what’s more important to her. And what can and can’t she control?
Since Jamie and Roy often go up against each other in court, did you find that by the end of the season, they were pretty evenly split in who actually won their cases?
AW: We find ourselves not only going against each other on the case of the week, but sometimes we work together. Sometimes it’s just me, and he’s doing other City Attorney duties, and sometimes it’s just him, and I’m dealing with things on my own. I didn’t really keep tally.
For me, it was a year in these people’s lives; you win some, you lose some. I’m sure someone was thinking about it and making sure they were evenly matched. But for me, I didn’t want to keep a tally, because I think they’re competitive, but I don’t think they’re that competitive. The competition for them is a bit of a foreplay. It’s not actually competitive, it’s just a push and a pull I think they have a lot of fun with.
And they also both want the right outcome versus simply winning, which is nice.
AW: Yeah. There were some cases Roy won, and Jamie [was fine with it] – winning is very important to both of them, but not as important as justice is. So if justice means that they lose, then that’s the way it should be. And I think they both understand and respect that.
– See more at: http://www.givememyremote.com/remote/2014/06/27/reckless-anna-wood-on-jamies-struggles-the-push-pull-with-cam-gigandets-roy-and-more/#sthash.q0aeW1fw.dpuf
Charleston, South Carolina, is in the spotlight in the new CBS series “Reckless,” starring Anna Wood and Cam Gigandet.
Wood plays Jamie Sawyer, a beautiful litigator transplanted to the Deep South from Chicago. She hides a mutual attraction with a charming Southern attorney as a police scandal threatens to tear Charleston apart. The series premieres Sunday (9 p.m. EDT).
City officials say they’re excited about the series showcasing beautiful parts of Charleston.
“The end result is that people see a city that is unlike most in the United States,” says Duane Parrish, director of the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism. “‘Reckless’ will make people want to visit Charleston.”
Wood agrees. “Charleston is a hidden gem in America,” she says. “I’d like to think our show captures the romanticism of our city, very timeless, incredibly romantic, a kind of wonderland.”
“It can do for Charleston what ‘Hawaii Five-0’ did for Hawaii,” Parrish says.
And something else is happening, says Walea Constantinau, Honolulu Film Commissioner.
“What you are really talking about is this whole entity called film tourism,” he says. “Audiences are very sophisticated these days. The same way they like to engage in their shows through social media, they also like to go to places where these shows are shot. It makes them feel more connected. We saw that with ‘Lost,’ which was also shot in Hawaii.”
Wood, who was born and raised in Mount Airy, North Carolina, says she always knew she would be an actress and that she would have to leave the South to pursue her dreams. Now 28, Wood says she’s thrilled that her dream job has brought her back to her roots.
“To be in the South in my first big job was very nostalgic,” Wood says. “There is an energy to the way we do things in the South.”