Behind The Scenes of Agents of SHIELD – Interview with Paul Lacovara (actor and stunt)

With the airing in the U.S. of the episode “The Bridge”, we present an exclusive interview with Paul Lacovara, a stunt that here plays the role of Bryan Hayward in Marvel‘s Agents of SHIELD midseason. Paul has a prolific career as a stuntman in some of the biggest productions of the last years as Star Trek, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and in more recent times was the stunt double for Tom Hiddleston in Thor and The Avengers.

Hi Paul. Thanks for accepting to be interviewed. May you tell us how you get involved with Agent of Shield? I know you was a stunt in some episodes, how you get Bryan Hayward’s role?
Thanks for getting in touch with me again! I became involved with agents of shield by simply say hello to the stunt coordinator, Tanner Gill. I went by to see him one day and we had a really good visit but a quick conversation, due to him being so busy. Within about 30 seconds he was quite nice and thanked me for coming by and then I was off driving home. A couple weeks went by and Tanner called me to check my availability for the following Monday. Thankfully I was available and went to work on the episode “The Hub”.
After that Tanner asked me to come back to work on another couple episodes and that went so well he threw me in for another spot. I auditioned for that and ended up getting it. That was the part that led up to the part as “Brian Hayward” on the upcoming episode “The bridge”.

Do you want to tell us something about your character?
I can’t really tell you too much about my character except for that he is a badass!

How was to work with Agent of SHIELD’s team? May you tell something about them? Which actors do you interact more with?
This was actually my third time working with Clark Gregg. The first time was on Thor when I was a Shield agent and he and I were driving one of the Shield vehicles in New Mexico. The second time was on The Avengers when Tom Hiddleston and I, as Loki attempted to kill Agent Coulson, by stabbing him with Loki’s scepter. Clark ended up getting the better of us in that deal!
This time around working with Clark was great as usual. He and the entire cast are consummate professionals and very nice and personable. My character had a lot of big action with both Clark and Brett Dalton.
I mainly interacted with Clark and Brett but in the episode titled “repairs” where I doubled Robert Baker who played “Tobias” for a fight in a barn, I had it out with Ming Na, and she pretty much kicked my ass.

May you tell us something about Holly Dale, the director? Which advices she gave to you on the set?
Holly Dale was an amazing director to work with. She was so nice and accepting of the way I would deliver my lines but was also very creative and sensitive when she would ask for something more. She knew exactly what she wanted and knew how to get the performance she was looking for out of her actors all while letting the cast deliver their character with their own spin.
There was one time when we were in the middle of a big action sequence and I delivered one of my lines in a way Holly felt I could’ve been more strong and stern, so she recommended I channel Arnold Schwarzenegger in the original Terminator. It was actually the best advice I could’ve received at that moment and I feel it really helped the scene turn out amazing!

How you trained for the role, which were the differences with your usual stunt job?
This job as Brian Hayward was such a good experience but it did take a bit out of me. There is a scene I have where I have to show a lot of emotional angst and desperation and that actually mentally wore me more out more than some of the hard hits I’ve taken as a stuntman. It was kind of exhausting riding that emotional roller coaster while having to do it for a couple hours at a time. Holly Dale was really great in supporting me and helping me deliver the best performance I could and I’m really very thankful she was there to direct me.

You are a veteran of the Marvel Universe having performed as stunt for Tom Hiddleston in Thor and in The Avengers, which sensations you feel taking part again of such vast universe?
I love working for Marvel. Everyone is always so nice and they treat you like family. It was really good to be back working for them and I hope to do it again soon. I feel very fortunate to be a part of the comic book world and especially a part of the Marvel Universe.

Do you have some future projects?
n regards to future work I have a job coming up as stunt coordinator on a pretty action packed feature. Big fights, wire work, etc. It’s called the Golden Warrior and is being produced by 3 Roses Entertainment. I’ve also been working a bit on a TV show called Intelligence, doubling various guys. And another show called Workaholics doubling a couple guys over there. Other than that it is just more training, looking for work, and waiting for the phone to ring! Thanks for the interview and I hope to hear from you again. Take care!

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