By Sandra Gonzalez
June 26, 2011 at 01:29 PM EDT
Karen Neal/TNT
  • Movie

It seems like forever since the last time we saw a new episode of Leverage. And even though it has been a while, Timothy Hutton, who helms the TNT action-drama, says season 4, which premieres tonight, will be well worth the wait.

“It does feel like it’s been a long time, but we’re really excited. It’s feeling like the best season yet,” he says.

In a chat with EW, Hutton talks about the new season, Nate’s rocky relationship with Sophie, and the team’s newest (and possibly biggest) challenge yet. [Spoiler alert for the first episode…and beyond!]

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So we’ve gotten a few peeks behind the scenes of the premiere. What was it like filming in what looks like a major blizzard?

TIMOTHY HUTTON: That was on location up at Mt. Hood. About 60 inches came down in three days; it was the first three days of filming the new season. And we all reported to the lodge and there was nothing fancy about it. There were no dressing rooms, so people were changing in hallways. We had one unit shooting in one part of the mountain and another shooting in another. Then there was base camp. Between snowball fights we managed to get some filming done. It was great to be up there.

Have you all filmed in any other crazy locations this season?

With every show, it takes place in a new environment; we get a new case and then the team has to go somewhere. So we have a lot of those — as we always have. There’s one that takes place in the desert and in Bahrain. That’s going to be an interesting one. There’s one that takes place in the Midwest and one that takes place on an island. So it’s going to be a fun year because of all the locations.

The show had a great arc with Damien Moreau. Will there be a new big baddie this season?

Yeah! There is. First, we’ve got some amazing guest stars. Eric Stoltz is in the first one and Danny Glover is in another one. And without giving [too much] away, there’s also a guy that emerges as the season starts. The Leverage team starts to see that someone is following them. Someone is following their every move and someone has heard everything they’ve said privately to one another. Someone knows what’s in their mail and what’s been going on in the Leverage headquarters, which is Nate’s apartment. Someone is tracking every move they make and everything they say and who their clients are. There’s somebody out there who’s watching them. The Leverage team gets wind of it and it creates this paranoia. So they have to be very cautious as they move forward. There’s somebody out there — as season 4 begins — who wants to disrupt what the Leverage team does.

And it can really be any of a number of enemies they’ve made in four seasons.

Oh, yeah! Can you imagine? All the people they’ve gone after who have taken advantage of people. The team has taken people and companies down. And they each have their fair share of enemies before they even all came together as a team.

Speaking of their past, are we going to see any more of Nate’s this season?

I think you’ll see different areas of his life. Last season, his father made an appearance. As this season goes on, there will be other things like that from Nate’s past — unexpected people come out of the woodwork. And some cases will remind him of certain things that happened in his life — things he ends up taking way too personally. He ends up going over the edge because it hits close to home for him, and the rest of the team worries that every case they take on is somehow going to strike a chord with Nate. Sometimes the extent Nate goes to take some of these people down is way too much. He sometimes takes things way too personally. He’s got a ways to go until he figures out what went wrong in certain parts of his life. So that will be part of season 4. But that’s the case with all the characters. They all have to deal with the past while being present, forward-thinking people. There’s a lot of situations and incidents that have happened unique to their lives that will come back. You know, there’s also a lot of fun, though. There’s a lot of situations during the cons where they have to think on their feet and Nate sometimes doesn’t like it when the others make a call. He’s definitely got his control issues.

That might be a problem for him, considering there’s no controlling Sophie. What can you tell me about the progression we’re going to see with them as a pair when we come back, being that the last time we saw them, they were in his bed together?

Well, they’re certainly going to have to deal with how they are together and what they are. I think both of them are very reluctant to call what they have any kind of a relationship, but they like spending time together. They’re concerned that the team — the rest of them — might know what happened. And Sophie and Nate figure the team doesn’t know and maybe they can carry on without them knowing. But as the season goes on, you’ll see they’re not handling it all that well. It makes for some very sticky funny moments.

  • Movie
Complete Coverage