Tyler Hoechlin Talks How Things Have Evolved for His Character, Interacting with New Characters, and More on the Set of TEEN WOLF Season 3
Developed by Jeff Davis, the hit MTV drama series Teen Wolf returns for a super-sized, 24-episode third season that debuts on June 3rd. Picking up four months after the events that nearly ended Jackson’s (Colton Haynes) life and resurrected Peter Hale (Ian Bohen), Season 3 finds teen werewolf Scott McCall (Tyler Posey) and his friends Stiles (Dylan O’Brien), Lydia (Holland Roden) and Allison (Crystal Reed) beginning their junior year of high school unaware that a new threat has arrived in Beacon Hills – a deadly pack of Alpha werewolves intent on bringing Derek (Tyler Hoechlin) into their fold.
With the filming relocated to Los Angeles, Collider was invited to check out the set and chat with the cast for a series of exclusive interviews. While hanging out on the set of Derek’s new loft residence, actor Tyler Hoechlin talked about where things are at now for Derek, the dynamic he has with Peter and Isaac (Daniel Sharman), how things have evolved for Derek as an Alpha, the evolution of his relationship with Scott, how awesome the new set is, being on a show that really changes things up every season, his interaction with the new characters, how much he enjoys doing the stunt work and fight scenes, the possibility of a love interest for Derek, and how much he enjoys the instant feedback from fans though social media. Check out what he had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
Collider: Where are things at for Derek, when the show picks back up for Season 3?
TYLER HOECHLIN: It’s four months later and Derek is working with Peter (Ian Bohen), his crazy uncle, and Isaac (Daniel Sharman), one of his pack members, to find the missing members of his pack. That’s what we’ve been up to, for the last few months. It’s taking us awhile, apparently. So far, we’re still working on it. We’ll see. Hopefully, it turns out well.
What’s the dynamic like, between Derek, Peter and Isaac?
HOECHLIN: Between the three of our characters, it’s much different than the three of us, as individuals. We have a great time together. We always love working with our little group. You have three very strong personalities, in these characters. I think Derek, being the Alpha, is the leader of that group, but you also have two people who could easily, at any moment, want to step up and take that role, as well. It’s a very interesting dynamic. There’s a bit of a mutual respect, but there’s also always a good bit of tension between the three of them.
How have things evolved for Derek, as an Alpha?
HOECHLIN: When we come back, I don’t think there’s too much different from when we left Season 2. In Season 2, Derek was an overly confident Alpha, in the beginning, but was quickly humbled. He learned where he really stood and what his capabilities and limits were. Season 3 is a lot about redemption. It’s a much more humbled and focused Derek. He’s learning from his mistakes. I think he is growing, but not in a very quick way. He’s definitely learning his limits and what he can do to get the things done that he needs to get done.
What sort of relationship do Derek and Scott (Tyler Posey) have this season?
HOECHLIN: The relationship with Scott, this year, is much more one of mutual respect for him being his own wolf, and almost being his own Alpha, really. There’s not as much frustration with Scott. He’s not annoyed with Scott, as often as he used to be. It’s very much a realization that he needs Scott, as much as Scott needs him.
What can you say about Derek’s new place to live?
HOECHLIN: The abandoned railway and the burnt out houses are a thing of the past, hopefully, unless something happens to this new loft, which I think is awesome. I would love to live in that space. I’m kind of jealous. It makes me want to go live somewhere in New York, or something. It’s a great new set. It’s a lot of fun to shoot on. There are a lot of things that can be done. It looks incredible. And I think it fits Derek. It’s something that he needed to really solidify this character, as having an identity and a place that he lives. It looks like him, and it feels like him.
One of the big worries of doing a TV show is getting stuck in a character that’s the same, season after season, but this show changes every season. What’s it like to be on a show where you keep learning so many new things about your character and you have all these new actors coming in?
HOECHLIN: For me, as an actor, one of the biggest fears on a TV show is getting stuck in something where you end up feeling like you’re doing the same thing, every single year. I’ve had experiences with that before, and it gets monotonous and you get complacent and a little lazy. So, to be able to come into every season of this show with Derek being almost a completely different person has been a lot of fun to play. It’s like starting a new project, all over again. You’re familiar with it, and coming back to a character that you know and that you enjoy playing is very fun, but to have something new to focus on, every time, is challenging and it keeps it interesting, for sure. And the relationships are constantly changing. Different people are going through different things and choosing different sides. There’s always something new to focus on, and it keeps it fresh.
Will you have much interaction with the new characters, this season?
HOECHLIN: Yeah. There are a lot of new characters. I don’t know how much I can give away, but there are a lot of new wolves, and there are new friends and family coming into play. I’ve been able to work with a lot of them, and they’ve been fantastic. We have lucked out, on this show, in a major way, with the fact that anyone we’ve ever brought onto the cast has been nothing but incredible to work with. That’s a huge blessing. We enjoy having everyone who comes to the show, and we’re sad when anybody leaves. It’s a great set. It’s a great place to work. That’s probably the most amazing thing about this job. The people that are on this show have been incredible, the whole time.
What have been the most surprising character relationships, for you?
HOECHLIN: I don’t know. A lot of things around here are a surprise. We don’t exactly know where everything is going, all the time, which is a good thing. It keeps it spontaneous for us. But, I don’t know if I’ve seen any of the relationships and gone, “Oh, wow, I really did not see it going that way, at all.” I think the writing on this show has been incredible, from day one, so everything that develops seems to flow, unless it’s a massive twist in the story. Other than that, the relationships form themselves. It’s felt fairly natural, for the most part.
Are there any stunts that you’ve felt goofy shooting, but were really impressed with, once you saw the finished product?
HOECHLIN: No, actually. Our stunt coordinators and our stunt players are amazing at what they do. I’m so grateful that they let me participate as much as they do because I thoroughly enjoy it. It’s one of my favorite things to do. I enjoy doing the stunt work and the fight scenes. As much as they allow me to do, I’m always very excited and happy to do it. It doesn’t usually feel very awkward. The only thing that could is the make-up. It’s an incredibly freeing experience with the make-up because you have no judgement with what you’re doing. You can snarl and not feel like an idiot because you have something that makes it look legitimate. When you go back and look at it, with the way it’s shot and the people we have working on this project, they always make it look good.
Is there room for Derek to have a love interest? Is that something you’d like to explore?
HOECHLIN: I’m going to say that I think so, and that’s about it. You’ll have to wait and see. I’ll tease enough to say that it’s been nice to explore different sides of Derek this season. You learn much more about Derek in this third season. I’ve already learned things about Derek that I didn’t know before. There will be fun revelations with the character this year.
Do you enjoy having the instant feedback from fans through Twitter and social media?
HOECHLIN: Yeah. It’s flattering. I think there are some major pros and cons to it. I would like, when people are watching the show, to just sit and watch the show and enjoy it. There are a lot of people working really hard to put a show together, and sometimes it can get lost in that. It becomes more about the interaction during the show than it is about the actual episode. But at the same time, it is a great thing that people can interact and have those conversations. Someone can throw up a topic, and then someone can open up a discussion and it’s immediate. Millions of people can literally jump in on one conversation, and I think it’s a great thing. As an actor, I try not to use it as a validation or as a resource for whether I’m doing a good job or not. I think that plays with your head too much. You just have to focus on what you are doing and your craft, and working with your directors and listening to your producers, writers and fellow actors. That’s where that comes into play. But, as a medium for people to have those discussions and talk about the show, it’s a great thing.
Teen Wolf airs on Monday nights on MTV, starting on June 3rd.