“I’ve been dying to go back to San Francisco,” says Jonathan Groff, who plays Patrick in HBO’s Looking. Now he will, with the gay-centric show from Michael Lannan and Andrew Haigh officially renewed for a second season and production kicking off this summer.
The season one finale airs on March 9, and Groff spoke with The Hollywood Reporter about what to expect, why Patrick singing would be horrendous and that drunken kiss between Patrick and Russell Tovey’s Kevin. “That kiss was done in so many different ways. We did a lot of takes,” Groff reveals.
First off, congratulations on season two.
Thank you. We are so stoked. We’ve been keeping our fingers crossed for a season two since the day we wrapped. We had so much fun, it’s ridiculous. We try to get together every week and watch the episodes together. I’ve been dying to go back to San Francisco. I had celebratory drinks in New York with one of our producers Sarah Condon, Murray [Bartlett] and Frankie [J. Alvarez], and with our writers in L.A. and Michael Lannan. And two weeks ago in London with Andrew Haigh.
And congrats, too, on Frozen at the Oscars.
I’m in an afterglow moment of Frozen winning. “Let It Go” is still stuck in my head. I was with my friend yesterday saying, “How can we not get this song out of our heads?”
For Looking’s finale, do you think Patrick ends up in a better or worse place after season one than when we meet him?
When we meet Patrick, he’s awkwardly in the woods, uncomfortable but trying to expand and find a new side to himself and putting himself out there. We see a huge evolution in him reflected through his relationship with Richie (Raul Castillo), and then with Kevin, there’s a lot of sexual tension. By the end of the finale, he’s gotten himself into a really tight spot because he’s dealing with the repercussions of letting himself go. He went from not having a boyfriend to having these two amazing men interested in him, and they are two very specific, wonderfully confusing relationships. He doesn’t know where to turn.
And everybody else?
Everything definitely comes to a head, and the characters take a giant step forward. Whether that’s for the better or worse, it’s hard to say.
You and Russell Tovey have such chemistry. Did you two know each other before shooting?
I met Russell on Broadway when he was doing History Boys, and I was doing Spring Awakening. I met him briefly then, but we officially met at the screen cast for Looking because we were both up for the part of Patrick. They loved him and wrote him this role, and from then we hit it off. We both come from similar acting backgrounds, from the theater and the stage, and we just get each other on a certain level. Also, luckily, we just naturally get along.
And then there’s the kiss from last week’s episode.
We did a lot of takes of that kiss. I didn’t know what was going to happen until I finally saw the episode because that kiss was done in so many different ways. I think the way they decided to do it was perfect. It’s fitting, especially considering the finale. You don’t want to blow your wad too soon, so to speak.
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