In the GRIMM episode "Mr Sandman" Kieren played a South African fly wesen known as Jinnamuru Xunte that fed off the tears of grieving people. Kieren kindly answered some questions about this part.
What were your thoughts when you first read the script?
I thought it was weird! I had heard of the show but I hadn't seen an episode, so I had some catching up to do with the mythology. Once I got the gist, I was excited to play a creepy South African fly wesen.
Auditioning for this part must have been interesting; did you have to audition as Andre and as Jinnamuru Xunte?
Yeah, both. The audition scenes were basically the 1st two scenes of the episode, in the support group and back at the 1st victim's apartment. I had to come up with my best "creature morph" face without the benefit of CGI, so that was pretty funny.
How did you prepare for the part? Did you get any special notes on how to play the Jinnamuru Xunte?
My main preparation had to do with the South African accent. I skyped with a dialogue coach and really tried to do it justice. I enjoy the challenge of taking on other accents, so that was something I really liked about this job. Other than that, I watched a bunch of Grimm episodes, including the pilot, to educate myself about the show. I also studied flies around the house. Just kidding.
Did you have to get into make-up at all or was it all CGI for you?
No makeup for me, the stunt double was the one who had to endure the hours in makeup. We would tag team after the morph and he would jump in front of the camera. I did have a partial face mask over my left eye to show the empty eye socket when Andre gets stabbed in the end. That looked very realistic and gross, I couldn't stop staring at it.
How was filming for the CGI scenes different to ‘normal’ filming?
You just do your thing, safe in the knowledge that the SPFX guys are going to make it look really cool. I loved it when I finally got to see their work, they do a great job on that show. They take a detailed mold of your face and take lots of photos from multiple angles so they can fit it to your perfomance. I found it fascinating, 'cos I haven't done anything like that before.
Did you get to do some of your own stunts (like stopping the car in the street or falling down the stairs before getting stabbed)?
The cool stuff was done by my stunt double. My contribution was to run out in front of that car and fall flat on my back. (a combination of dew on the grass, slick road, inappropriate shoes and clumsiness) That was literally on the first day, my first take! Luckily I was uninjured, apart from my pride.
Andre had a lovely car. Did you get specials instructions about driving it?
The brake pedal was pretty sensitive. Apart from that it was great, in such mint condition.
Do you have a favourite moment of filming?
I loved doing the chase sequence in the school when the cops were after Andre. Running up the stairs, taking out David Giuntoli and busting out of the classroom. Good action stuff.