Still remembered as the teenager protagonist of Saved by the Bell -and several years and television series later-, Mark-Paul Gosselaar he puts himself in the shoes of a federal agent who tries to save the world at any price until the encounter with an innocent girl leads him to rethink the methods. The plot of The Passage, which premieres in Spain this Monday, February 11 (Fox), baby of the apocalyptic universe of Justin Cronin's homonymous trilogy, although it is a very free adaptation of the famous saga of novels with vampire touches.
The first season starts in a top secret facility of the US government, where a team of scientists undertakes experiments of dubious ethics with the mission to fight a virus that could devastate humans. The character that plays Gosselaar, the agent Brad Wolgast, is in charge of signing as guinea pigs prisoners awaiting execution in the corridor of death. And he does it without hesitation. "He's a good guy", explains the actor, "but he lived a tragic incident a few years ago and that led him to get involved in the project without asking questions, because he does not want to know what happens in the laboratory or about the terrible results of the tests".
What Wolgast only intuits about the (questionable) behavior of the scientists, but that the viewer will be able to see from the first chapter, will run parallel to the adventure of an orphan baby named Amy that becomes an object of interest of the government and of your experiments. And our agent will be in charge of intercepting it. That things will go wrong from that point is the limit of what can be explained about The Passage without incurring the spoiler), although enough to verify that the proposal is based mainly on the relationship between the character of Gosselar and that of his young co-star, Saniyya Sidney, aged 12.
"The chemistry that you see on the screen is real. Saniyya is a great girl and her parents are my same age, we understand each other very well, "describes the interpreter, 44, after admitting with a modesty that does not seem false, but of a practical nature, that the first signing of the production was not himself but Sidney ("without the character of Amy there would be no series"). He explains very involved in a project that initially tried to take shape in the cinema, but after the frustrated attempt has ended up moving to the small screen under the aegis of Ridley Scott.
Gosselaar read the three books of Cronin before starting the shoot ("other actors of the cast preferred not to do it, but I know how to separate the literary world from the television") and was fascinated by that story that television now gives us in a non-chronological way, It is clear, during the interview with EL PAÍS in London, that they are known by heart and that they see in these novels material for many more seasons, provided that the audiences endorse a continuity.
In your particular opinion, The Passage he relates in reality "a love story that will unfold in layers that overlap", which distill throughout successive episodes a traumatic personal event of the past or his break with the wife who, even now separated, will continue to be his accomplice in the decisions that the agent takes against his superiors.
Who knows if the followers of the best-selling trilogy, published in Spain under the global title of The passage, they will see it in the same way. The Californian interpreter only asks them not to compare the read with what they will see on the screen: "The series is our interpretation, neither better nor worse, and I only hope that the fans do not feel obliged to choose".