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Someone to Believe In

Landing his latest role on J.J. Abrams and Alfonso Cuarón’s new sci-fi series, Nick Tarabay tells us why he’d rather not play the hero

Believe, the new NBC series from executive producers J.J. Abrams and Alfonso Cuarón, focuses on the hunt for a young girl named Bo whose still-developing super powers promise to change the world as we know it. In his role as black-ops officer on the hunt for Bo, Tarabay’s character joins an international gang of power players whose motives are never quite clear, except for finding the girl for themselves.

Tarabay spoke to DuJour about working with Abrams and the appeal of playing a conflicted character.

You’ve done a lot of TV. What brought you to Believe?

There was a part for what I do best, so my agent sent it to me. And since J.J. Abrams was involved, I wanted to be as well.

The premise of the show is that Bo has magical powers everyone wants to get their hands on. Do you believe in that sort of thing?

I do believe there are special people out there who can hone in on something bigger and better. Now, I’d love to believe in Superman, too, but I’m not sure I can go as far as that.

What’s the kind of part you do best?

[Something that] fits me. I play a driven, focused CIA agent who ends up being a threat to little Bo and her team. I have a little more fun playing the bad guy. Not that he’s necessarily all bad, but it’s more exciting because his playground is bigger than that of the heroes. There are no rules, no walls.

Your character is in a tough place. Hunting criminals is one thing, but chasing a kid if another. What about him appeals to you? 

I try not to judge my character. He works for the people who supposedly want to make a better life and a better world, and he’s the sort of guy who doesn’t know the meaning of “can’t.” It’s challenging to chase a child, but there’s a bigger story here. It’s not about Bo or what she’s done, it’s about something that’s supposed to change the world. Believe raises the question of what is it that you believe in and how far will you go for it.

In addition to J.J. Abrams, you’ve got Alfonso Cuarón working on the show as a producer. That’s an impressive group. 

With J.J., I worked with him first hand on Star Trek Into Darkness, and he’s just an absolute pleasure to work with. Every actor should have the chance to work with J.J. Abrams. I haven’t meant Alfonso Cuarón yet, but the guy seems to know what he’s doing. I can’t wait to work with him.

If you could pick a superhuman power for yourself, what would it be? 

I’d want to go through time. I would love to visit the past and visit the future.



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