Tate Donovan Chats About New Series Hostages

The Fall 2013 TV Season continues to pick up steam, and tonight marks the debut of Hostages, the limited-run series from CBS.

During CTV‘s 2013 Upfront Presentation in Toronto, star Tate Donovan chatted about Hostages and what sets it apart from other suspense thrillers on the small screen. You can watch the full video below, but here are some highlights:

  • The key element that sets Hostages apart from similar network series is that it’s only 15 episodes, and more like a cable series. He added that there isn’t a resolution at the end of each episode, and viewers won’t know where it’s going.
  • Donovan shared that a limited-run series is generally more exciting, and that many actors are scared of playing one character for 6 or 7 years. With this model, you work intensely for 5 months and then you are able to work on other projects. He also mentioned that a longer season is a harder format for writers and production, so the cable model is the “ideal”.
  • He thinks that the key difference between shooting a cable series vs a network series is at a production level. With cable, the producers are left on their own a bit more while on a network series, the network itself is more involved. He did say that the gap is starting to close between these two models. Hostages is riskier content, shorter season, and characters that are not heroes, which is different for CBS.
  • This is not the first time that he’s been on a series with a strong female lead, but says that his penchant for working with that type of character is coincidence. He commented that TV is great for female talent since there are so many great characters and series based around those characters.
  • He discussed the many grey areas of Hostages, and that every single person on the show has a secret or something they are hiding. When he talked about it with the producers and how rough it would be on the main family, he was told that by the end of the series, the family will become closer as a result of what they go through.
  • He really emphasized how everyone is really well cast in the series, and that it’s a happy set despite the darker tone. The biggest challenge when shooting a drama is not cracking up, and actors that play his kids on Hostages are hysterical.


Check out the series premiere of Hostages, tonight at 10pm ET on CTV in Canada and at 10/9c on CBS in the US.

Photo and video by Melissa Girimonte. Copyright © 2013 TheTelevixen.com

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