Cariba Heine and Phoebe Tonkin reveal the highs and lows of playing mermaids as the latest epissodes of H20 comes out on dvd.
The first season of kid’s show H20: Just Add Water introduced viewers to Emma (Claire Holt), Rikki, and Cleo, who developed strange powers over water after swimming in an enchanted pool on the mysterious Mako Island. While the season saw the friends try to keep their abilities under wraps and deal with the unfortunate side effects of growing a mermaid tail whenever they came in contact with water, the second season delves more into the history of Mako Island mermaids and the girls’ love lives.
Cariba Heine and Phoebe Tonkin, who play Rikki and Cleo respectively, reflect on season two and tease as to what we can expect from the upcoming third season.
How does your character change in season two?
Phoebe: Each character’s power is magnified. My normal power is to control and manipulate water but, in season two, I can change the weather, as well! Cleo also has a bit of a personal battle on her hands when Charlotte (Brittany Byrnes) comes into the mix and complicates her relationship with Lewis (Packed to the Rafters’ Angus McLaren) and her life as a mermaid.
How do the girls’ romances develop?
P: In this season, Cleo learns not to take Lewis for granted. They’re great for each other – Lewis is very supportive and Cleo is very sweet. It works!
What’s the best thing about working with your on-screen love interest?
P: The great thing is that we’re all friends. I mean, we have to kiss on screen, but because we’re all such great mates, we make fun of each other and it takes the awkwardness out of it!
What did you think of the arrival of Charlotte in season two?
P: Brit was awesome to work with. She was really fun to have around and her storylines were cool – lots of stunts and special effects. When Charlotte gained the mermaids’ powers, we got to gup in a harness. That was pretty wicked!
The girls can’t touch water without turning into mermaids – so how do they shower?
P: It’s funny filming Cleo’s bathroom scenes – her tail hangs over the edge of the bath.
What is the hardest thing about filming the show?
P: The long hours! We work from around 4:30am until about 5pm each day, then we have to learn lines for the next day at night.
What’s it like wearing a tail?
P: Heavy, but really cool. The tail is about 50kg when we’re in the water, but it makes us swim really fast. It’s probably easier to swim with a tail than without it now.
What else can you tell us about season three?
P: It’s the best we’ve done – certainly the most fun! Having Indiana Evans onboard was excellent. Her character, Bella, is already a mermaid when she joins the show.
Published June 2009
by Gavin Scott