SDCC 2016: A Chat With the ‘Van Helsing’ Producers and Cast

This fall the Syfy network will be releasing a brand new chapter in the Van Helsing universe. We caught up with the cast and executive producers of the show at San Diego Comic-Con and asked them how they are bringing the iconic Van Helsing franchise into the modern era. 

“In the Van Helsing universe, nobody is safe.” Executive producer Simon Barry began. “This is a reinvention…we are using the myth of the Van Helsing story and expanding on it. We are using the lineage as a mythology.”


Kelly Overton in the Van Helsing press room.

Based on Syfy’s Van Helsing posters it’s not hard to notice that the main character is a woman. Vanessa Helsing played by Kelly Overton will be a single mother who wakes up from a coma after three years. “She’s a single mom and when she wakes up she doesn’t know where her daughter is. That becomes her driving force.” Overton explained. “She has the vampires who want her and the humans who want her for their own purposes. But all she fucking cares about is finding her daughter.” The story will take a female protagonist to a new level.

“I can say that my wife watched the pilot. This isn’t her genre at all but she resonated with that piece of it.” Executive producer Chad Oakes stated. “She’s a complex character.”

While preparing for her role Overton looked to Niva Yocavitch for inspiration, “I always loved Niva Yocavitch in the 5th element… she has that badassness.” Overton explained. Christopher Heyerdahl whose character, Sam, is deaf went on to describe how he made sure to sign in the background while filming. “My focus was not only learning the text but also figuring out a way to sign and improvise in a scene. I wanted there to be a different level there just for people that were deaf or hearing impaired.”

van helsing

Jonathan Scarfe in the Van Helsing press room

Finally, with any vampire show comes buckets and buckets of blood on set. We needed to know what it was like working with the sticky stuff, “I love all the fake blood, I love getting bloody.” Overton explained while laughing. Producer Holly Hines went on to state, “the actors literally slide all over the place, it’s hard not to laugh.”

“Surprising twists and death counts, no one is safe in the Van Helsing universe.” Van Helsing will premiere on the Syfy network October 23rd at 10/9 central.

Madeline Potts is a Sophomore Journalism student and lover of tea, ginger cats and Comic Con. She once got in a fight with Steven Moffat.