Before tonight’s Season 2 premiere of The Bridge, we have a “Take 5” with series star Diane Kruger from a press call we took part in last week. Kruger discussed her role as Sonya Cross, tonal differences in this season, the introduction of a new character that places Sonya in a difficult situation, and where her relationship with Marco stands as the season begins.
Sonya is a challenging character to play. How do you take such an emotionally restrictive role and bring it to life in a way that is satisfying to you?
It’s been a real challenge, not just for me, but I think also for the writers, for Elwood [Reid] and the writing team to continue to evolve her character and to give her storylines where she can show emotion and nuance. Obviously, people who have Asperger’s have emotions; it is just that they are delayed and come out in the most unexpected moments. Season 2, we will get to see a lot of Sonya’s personal life and her relationship with Ted Levine’s character and Demian’s character, obviously, tested. It’s a very dark and quite emotional season for her, so it’s been very satisfying.
How is the tone of Season 2 different from the first season?
I think it’s a very different show in many ways. We don’t really have a classic serial-killer storyline. You know, we were following the original Scandinavian show in Season 1, and now, we’re completely on our own and have our own stories. Meredith Stiehm went back to Homeland, and it’s just Elwood Reid, the showrunner, on the main voice of the show, and his vision for the show is darker for sure, but also more complex. There’s not just one storyline per se, so our personal lives get involved in what is happening on the border. There are many different storylines that sort of happen at the same time, and, seemingly, are not connected, and the American involvement in the cartels plays a big part. It’s a very grey show.
Where does Sonya and Marco’s relationship stand this season?
Without giving too much away, it is getting tested a bit. Sonya has reason to believe that Marco is compromised and she distrusts him quite a bit, and there’s a big fallout over whether or not she believes that he’s taken too many steps into that darkness, into that grey zone where she learns about his dealings with the bad guys.
What is Sonya’s greatest personal struggle this season, and how does the character develop?
Her relationships with [Hank] and with Marco are being tested. [In the first two episodes], you [are] introduced to the character of Jack Dobbs who is Jim Dobbs’ brother, so they have a relationship, which clearly is not very healthy. There’s a lot of personal hardship for her. Some great joys in the beginning of the season, and then, it’s pretty dark for Sonya. Yet, at the same time, it’s a great year, a season of personal maturity. She had this sort of daughter father-figure relationship with [Hank], and as that relationship gets tested and tried, I think she comes out of it as a much stronger independent woman, and she’s also starting to realize that things are not quite as black and white and sometimes you have to sort of make a concession, which has been, for Sonya, completely unimaginable.
Can you share any more about Sonya’s relationship with this new character, Jack Dobbs?
I think it’s very dark when you think about it. This clearly is the brother of the man who killed her sister in the most horrific way. You will come to learn that Sonya has never really had any sort of family and that her sister really was the person in her life. She has never been able to move on, and has been searching for answers out of Jim Dobbs for the past 15 years, which is why she continues to go to see him. In some really strange way, that relationship and him painting pictures of the murder of her sister has been the only connection that has been left of her family. Meeting his brother has this strange fascination for her of being still with somebody who she shares history with. Clearly, that is not a very good way of going about things, and again, her idea of what sex means and being physically with somebody comes into that, and they have this really strange relationship that makes her really happy or she thinks is really happy. You’ll see that relationship over time and what happens with it is pretty sad.
I don’t think Sonya has ever been in a relationship. I think the fact that he is her sister’s killer’s brother, I feel like there’s a sense that she feels like they have shared history, and she somehow knows him. I think that he doesn’t judge her. He doesn’t think she’s odd and weird. There’s this desperate attempt of making it maybe more than it actually is, and I think there’s little bit of rebellion towards [Hank] as well, who obviously thinks that this is not a good idea. I think there’s this need of wanting to maybe have a relationship to not let go of this shared history. Then, yes, she opens herself up and gets burned.
Photo Courtesy of FX