The Red Road

Photo courtesy of Mike Mckinney

On Sunday, at the Atlanta Film Festival, the season 2 premiere of the Sundance Channel series “The Red Road” played to an enthusiastic audience. Before the screening, I had a chance to take with Julianne Nicholson (Jean Jensen), Tamara Tunie (Marie Van Der Veen) and Martin Henderson (Harold Jensen), stars of the show.

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Hi Julianne:

Julianne Nicholson: Hi, it’s great to be here!

So, tells us about the show:

Julianne: “The Red Road” is a Native American expression for taking the right path, doing the right thing. The are two communities on the show, the Native American community and the Anglo community. They are living in basically the same place, and because of that, there is much conflict between them. There was an accident in the first season that then perpetuated mayhem on the show. There is a lot of bad stuff between the two communities, and that connotes in season two. But now, the Lenape tribe has been recognized by the Federal government, something that they weren’t in season one. Because of this recognition, it’s going to cause a whole new set of problems.

Do you shoot the show in Atlanta?

Julianne: We shoot it in Atlanta and the surrounding area. I love Atlanta. I really do. It’s a great place to work in, plus I had my two kids with me during some of the shooting of the show. So I’ve really got a chance to discover the city. I mean you have the Botanical Gardens, the Zoo, Stone Mountain, and you have amazing food. Plus, everyone here is so nice. The people in this city have a generous pride about their city. I love it here!

The Red Road

Photo courtesy of Mike Mckinney

Hi Tamara, so tells us a little about your character:

Tamara Tunie; I play Marie Van Der Veen, who is the matriarch of the Native American community. She is the mother of Philip Kopus, played by Jason Momoa, who is an ex-con. When Philip comes back to the community, he brings trouble. So, Marie is constantly torn between doing what is best for her people and the challenges that her son presents.

So, you shoot the show in Atlanta. Where are you from?

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Tamara: I am originally from Cleveland but now live in New York. I love working in Atlanta because I have family down here. When we come down to shoot the show, it’s always great because I can see my cousin and her family. And my best friend since first grade lives here in Atlanta.

And you get to show the season two Premiere right here at the Atlanta Film Festival!

Tamara: I love it. I love that we get to show it to an audience right here in Atlanta.

The Red Road

Photo courtesy of Mike Mckinney

So Martin, tell us a little about your character:

Martin Henderson: I play Harold Jensen, who after the big shootout with the bad guys at the end of season one, has been promoted to Lieutenant in the Walpole police department. In season two, he will be reconnecting with his former ambition to become a captain. In season one, he was kind of haunted by the skeletons in his closet both with his past and his current life with his wife. He brought all that out into the open in season one, so in season two he has put that all behind him and is trying to be more proactive in trying to get the job as captain. He has also made the decision to be morally upright. That puts him at odds with some of the people in the community, especially people in positions of power. So will he end of doing the right thing at the sacrifice of his personal gain or will he revert back and help the community at large. He is a troubled character I that sense, but it trying to do the right thing. That’s opposed to what he was like in season one, when he was a victim of his own transgressions. He is a man who is trying to overcome his darker past and do the right thing.

You have a wonderful cast working with you on this show:

Martin: Yeah, we have a great cast including Tamara, who is amazing. And Julianne, who plays my wife who is fantastic playing an emotionally raw character from whom you never know quite what you are going to get, She’s always exciting in the part, so there is that element from moment to moment of not knowing what is going to happen. And there is Jason Momoa, who plays my nemesis. It’s kind of difficult, because in real life we love each other and get along really well, and have great respect for each other. But that’s all cast aside when the cameras start rolling, and we get to start up that power struggle between the two characters.

Thanks, guys so much and have a great season two.

“The Red Road” premieres this Thursday, April 2nd at 10 pm Eastern / 9 Central on the Sundance Channel.

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