Attention, Nikitaverse: Nikita returns for a third season tonight at 9 p.m. on The CW and CTV TWO. The spy series, starring Maggie Q, is generally  off the radar in the Criticverse, but it has its fans and they are loyal.
That’s the report back from Dillon Casey who plays ex-Navy SEAL Sean Pierce in the series. Casey, who grew up in Oakville, Ont., says he ran into fans on the streets of London this summer. Nikita is one of those action hours that exports well all over the world.
Funnily enough he gets less of that at home. Most Torontonians don’t even realize Nikita shoots in our city.
“You get people thinking I’m just in town, taking a break from shooting–which is the case half the time anyway,” says Casey. Then there are those who go, “Nikita? is that still on the air?”–thinking back to the earlier version of the same basic series which starred Peta Wilson. That series was produced in Mississauga and was a virtual training ground for talent behind and before the camera on 24.
Casey agrees this Nikita, Maggie Q, is a kick ass babe. “She’s a friendly professional who really knows her stuff,” he says. “Part of reason she was cast in the role is, besides being a beautiful woman and a great actor, is she’s a stunt woman who can coordinate a lot of her own fights as well as help you with your fights. She’s a leader in the show as well as outside the show.”
Before landing Nikita at the start of last season, Casey did his share of pilot season auditions in Los Angeles (turning the experience into a Funny or Die web series–check out Livin in LA with Dillon Casey).
“When you go to pilot season, you can always tell when the audition room is full of Canadians,” he says. One  time he found himself in a screen test for a series lead opposite two other Canadians, one of whom he worked with on MVP. When it’s Americans in the room, it’s very competitive, he says, but with Canadians, it’s, “Oh no, you deserve it man, you’re a great actor…”

The series was Haven and the part went to Casey’s old MVP mate, Lucas Bryant. That’s how it goes, says Casey. “You just say to yourself, I’m going to go in and do my best and that has nothing to do with how you do.”
I profile Casey this week in an article for The Canadian Press; you can find that article here.

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