Covert Affairs' Chris Gorham Steps Behind the Camera, Reveals That Conversation Is Coming

Covert Affairs Season 3Covert Affairs star Chris Gorham gets to fulfill a dream this Tuesday when his directorial debut episode of the USA Network drama airs at 10/9c.

But stepping behind the camera was not without its challenges — and a little hazing from the show’s crew! Below, the actor opens up about his experience helming the spy caper, his character’s upcoming blast from the past and whether Auggie and Annie will ever have that talk.

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TVLINE | How long have you been campaigning to direct an episode?
I actually took [creators] Matt [Corman] and Chris [Ord] out to dinner while we were shooting the pilot and told them that it’s something that I wanted to do [and] if the show went a couple seasons that I hoped they would consider me. [I] told them if there was anything they needed to see from me to prove that I was serious, to let me know. In the meantime, I’ve shadowed directors, and I’ve directed a couple of things for Funny or Die, gotten myself prepared and ready to do it and was fortunate enough that the show has lasted long enough and they were confident enough to give me the opportunity.

TVLINE | What was the most challenging aspect of stepping behind the camera?
It’s just a lot more work than my day job. [Laughs] I guess the unexpected thing was how much fun I had doing it even though there was so much more to do. I found it incredibly rewarding and immediate. The closest thing that I could compare it to would be like acting on the stage, because you get that very immediate response and feedback about what you’re doing and whether it’s working or not. When you’re directing, you see your ideas. You see them created right in front of you on the monitor and the sound stage. You get that experience all over again when you get into the editing room and you start playing with it. So I just had a blast.

TVLINE | Did they throw anything unusual at you in this episode?
No, they didn’t do anything on purpose… [Laughs] But the opening for this episode is a little unconventional for us because there’s no words in the whole, I think, first two scenes. Nothing is said. It’s all images. So I was able to get really creative with how I was playing with that, and especially building tension in the first scene in particular. The scene is only half a page in Annie’s apartment, and we took almost half a day shooting just that first part because I wanted to be able to cut it in a certain way. I just couldn’t be more pleased with how it turned out.

TVLINE | There seems to be a tradition of razzing when an actor directs. Did the cast give you any trouble?
The cast was great. The crew did a really funny thing. They made masks out of a picture of me and cut out the eyes. One day on set, they all pulled out these Chris Gorham masks and were holding them up. I tweeted out a picture, saying something like, “They make me do everything around here.” [Laughs]

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Covert Affairs Season 3TVLINE | What’s happening for Annie, Auggie and the team this episode?
It’s a big episode for Annie — bigger than some in the sense that it really kicks off the storyline for the rest of the season. Annie is given some intel by Eyal that she really runs with and vouches for based on her relationship with Eyal. Because of that intel, Arthur decides to launch a drone strike against someone, and the consequences of that are huge and ripple through the last four episodes. Also, Annie and Joan’s relationship comes to a head in a way that we haven’t really seen. And Joan and Arthur have some amazing moments, some of my favorite stuff. The emotional arc that they go through, I think people will be really happy about. For me, I feel like this is the episode where people start falling in love with Joan and Arthur again. I really love their stuff here. And Auggie gets an unexpected visitor, which gives him an opportunity to close a relationship in a way that is more satisfying to him and also introduces him to Operation Proper Exit, which is a program that he’s going to end up participating in in Episode 15.

TVLINE | Things were left a little complicated between Eyal and Annie last week, especially in regard to his intentions towards her. Where do things stand between them?
Things really get ratcheted up. Oded [Fehr] is not in this episode, but Eyal is very present and is talked about quite a bit. Like I said, the repercussions of this intel that he left for Annie and that she vouches for because of her relationship with him are going to be felt for the next several weeks.

TVLINE | Does Auggie trust Eyal?
He trusts him, but not like Annie trusts him. He doesn’t have the same relationship with him. Auggie trusts Annie, so it’s one of those things where if Annie is vouching for the guy, Auggie’s inclined to trust him. But he also wants to make sure that she’s keeping her eyes open, because what Auggie understands is that [Eyal] works for a competing spy agency. As much as you’re friends with someone like that, you have to remember where their primary allegiance lies, and that tends to be with their country.

TVLINE | First there was Simon, and now there’s Eyal. How is Auggie dealing with having yet another new guy stepping into Annie’s life, possibly with more-than-just-friendly intentions?
He still very much wants to have that conversation with Annie, and when the Eyal thing comes up, he’s — in his way — trying to figure out what that relationship is. That dynamic is explored ’til the end of the season.

TVLINE | Annie and Auggie never did discuss that thing he wanted to tell her in person. Is that something that comes up again?
Oh yeah, they’re going to have that conversation!

TVLINE | Is Annie curious about what he wanted to say?
It’s like real life. It comes and goes. It’s not something that you think about all the time, especially when you’re dealing with the stuff that Annie’s dealing with. But when it presents itself, you’re reminded that that’s still hanging out there. So yeah, it’s something that’s in her head. [But] I don’t think it’s something that’s all consuming because they have some pretty important things that they’re dealing with.

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  1. maryploppins says:

    WOOT thanks for the scoop … this is looking like it could be an interesting/pivotal episode. I’ve been a little nervous about where they’re going to take all this stuff now that Annie is back home and back to work … because it could really go in any direction right now. And I’ve been a little afraid that they would revert back to the “mission of the week” type thing without focusing on carrying forward all the stories they’ve set in place till now. The preview for next week had me wondering about that too. But based on this interview and a few others I’ve seen today, it seems that I shouldn’t worry, it seems that they will carry all these story arcs forward properly and in an interesting way (fingers crossed). :)

  2. MGL says:

    I am sorry, but I hope they keep Annie and Auggie as just friends. There is just not enough chemistry there. It was so great with Simon and it’s good with Eyal, but her and Auggie should remain as friends. I have read that there are no plans to “undead” Simon, but he should have been end game. That was her best relationship.

    • wednesday says:

      I’m pretty much with you on this one. I love Auggie but I just don’t want him in a romantic relationship with Annie. I think they work best as friends as well. And I also agree with you about Simon. Loved them together and hated that they killed him off. If they wanted to break them up for awhile they could sent him off like they did Ben. There was so need to kill him just for the sake of trying to be dramatic. I wouldn’t mind something happening with Eyal because he and Annie do have great chemistry, but not for awhile. She needs to get back on her feet and have time to mourn Simon. Plus I love Oded Fehr. I would love to have him on a recurring basis! All my favorite episodes are the ones he’s in.

  3. DarkShdo says:

    MGL is NUTS!!! The chemistry between Auggie and Annie is pure magic. I just wish he could look into her eyes just once….

    • MGL says:

      I am not “nuts ” there is just no chemistry. They work well as friends.

    • maryploppins says:

      This is actually one of the few shows where I’m not chomping at the bit for the male and female lead to hook up, but that’s not because I don’t think they have chemistry. I’ve just found it kinda refreshing that C.A. has not spent a ton of time focusing on that aspect of the story … it’s kind of a nice change of pace from shows like Castle or Chuck where they focus SO much on that and let other things fall by the wayside. 90% of the reason I watch Castle is for the C/B stuff, even though many times I could not care less about the “case of the week” on that show (and I generally hate episodic police procedurals). But with C.A., I got sucked in because I liked the show itself. The Annie/Auggie storyline is just one of the many elements I enjoy. I’d like to see them hook up eventually, but I dunno that I’m dying for it to happen right this second. What I AM dying for though, is for them to FINALLY have that heart to heart and beers, even if they keep it on the “friends” tip, cause both of them could seriously use it (and some alcohol), with all the terrible stuff they’ve gone through this season. :)

  4. Charlotte says:

    I love Annie and Auggie as friends and if there is something more I would love to see that too!
    I do hope that Eyal is kept as an ally and that he’s got potential to keep recurring. I love him!!

  5. Ace says:

    Agree with MGL, Annie and Auggie should be friends. After Simon, there is no one else for her. Simon was an adult relationship. Auggie is still a boy. What the writers should be considering is bringing back Simon. Please!

    • Katherine215 says:

      A boy? Because he’s not a field agent? Dude was Special Forces in Iraq, I hardly think he’s a boy. Also, I don’t really see the relationship with Simon as “adult” – they were lying to each other the whole time! I’m not sorry Simon’s gone at all.

  6. Eliza says:

    I prefer Annie and Auggie as friends only.

  7. Christine says:

    Annie/Auggie shipper all the way!!!

    So it seems that Parker comes back, but Auggie gets to be the one to have his say and end the relationship the way he wants to. Finally that chapter can end and Auggie and Annie can get closer to a relationship as a couple. YAY!! :)

  8. Maryam says:

    Annie and Auggie are made for each other.

  9. deidre says:

    love aggie and annie as friends, but i would like to see more and how it will go.

  10. Wrenn says:

    I just started watching this show. I love Eyal. I really would love for him to stay an ally to Annie and they develop a relationship with them in the future. Oded is awesome. I wish he was on the show more.

  11. mroshimaida says:

    Good for him glad they gave him the chance
    i am sure it will kick ass

  12. Phoebe says:

    Hmmm…am I the only one that sees Annie’s character as a selfish, spoiled, egotistical brat?? They make her out to be some super-agent, to the point where she’s the one to tell her superiors which intel to act on and how they should carry out the missions; then she always has to be rescued by Augie, Simon, Eyal and others! She’s so wrapped up in all her drama, thinking she’s the only one with problems. She not once takes the time to ask Joan if something is troubling her, when anyone without those “great” spy skills can see something is; she has not once offered to sit down with Augie to ask how he is doing after the break-up with his fiance (don’t get me wrong…I’m glad the show ended that relationship); and when her sister and her husband were going through problems, she couldn’t be bothered to be there for her sister. I’ve really gotten to the point where I can’t stand Annie’s character and if they don’t start making her a little more of a “friend” to her friends, instead of expecting everyone to be there for her and basically crapping on them when they have issues, I’ll be crossing this show off my to watch list! I think this show has potential, but they really need to fix Annie’s character, cause if I wanted to watch a self absorbed, egotistical know-it-all, I can find that on any number of other shows I don’t care to watch!

    • Much as it pains me, I’m with you on this. I’ve been rewatching previous seasons, and when I saw the final goodbye with Ben I was so proud of Annie… only to see all this emotional crapola coming back again. Maybe being burned by Eyal or others is what it will take to harden her and get her to use her brain, though I really wish it hadn’t been Eyal. I like my friendly neighborhood Mossad agent too much…though I’m not sure I’d like to see a Team Kismet pairing. I like their flirty chemistry as it is.

      • phebz64 says:

        I agree! I think they did a great job of casting for the characters, and I really like Piper Perabo; I just think the writers are doing her character a disservice. Everyone protects Annie, to the point of risking their lives and careers to save Annie. And she’s supposed to be a top notch spy…able to read people and their emotions, but she can’t read that her friends are having major life issues and take the time to sit down and help them in return? And I definitely agree on the making her character bounce from love interest to love interest like some lovesick puppy! The writers really need to regroup on her character!

        • maryploppins says:

          I think a lot of people are feeling that way after this week’s ep, because Annie was seriously the WORST version of herself for the entire ep. And it’s frustrating because I felt like she spent most of the season on a path of growing into a BETTER version of herself. But it seems like her shaky mental state coupled with the Eyal factor has caused her to totally regress back to all her worst habits and behaviors, which I wasn’t quite expecting. I expected that her reaction to all the crazy stuff she’s gone through with Lena and everything to be to swing in the opposite direction behavior-wise, which I would have much preferred.

          And the thing is … I THINK that was the point of this week’s episode … like, she’s going down a bad path (which, to be fair, shouldn’t they force this girl into THERAPY before letting her run crazy right back out in the field again??) … but if this doesn’t all blow up in her face big time, then I dunno how she’s going to grow from it at all. I’m nervous because I have a feeling Eyal will be eventually proven innocent/loyal (which I would actually prefer because I like his character) … but if that happens, then what the heck does that mean for Annie?? Is it just, Annie exhibits the exact same questionable/bad behavior that she always does, and everything works out fine for her again, and she learns nothing from it?? IMO if it turns out that way, this entire season will have been totally pointless, because I looked at one of the main purposes of the season to be significant character growth for her. I dunno I mean we’ll see, I’m still trying to trust that the writers will not screw this season up in the last few episodes haha. Because I think it has been a really great season up through ep 11. Fingers crossed about the last three eps now …

  13. Marcko says:

    I think it’s great for him to do this and it was a great episode. But PLEASE don’t disappear from our screens. We love seeing you in front of a camera!

  14. Mary Jennings says:

    I don’t want a romatic relationship for Annie and Auggie for the simple reason that I don’t see THAT type of a chemistry. Most people who don’t like a “ship” on a show, don’t like it because they don’t like one character or the other. That is not the case for me with Annie and Auggie. Neither one of them had an opposite gender sibling growing up. I always saw them as having a surrogate brother/sister chemistry. It’s like she found the brother she never had as a child and he found the sister he never had growing up. That’s how I was always hoping to see them as friends for the entire series run.

  15. TT says:

    I think that the relationship between Auggie and Annie will come full circle. In the beginning, she has this huge crush on him and then he got serious about Parker and got engaged and it was almost like she deliberately got into the relationship with Simon the way she did at first, like she wanted to feel something for him, then of course she fell for him. So now that she’s nursing her wounds I think if Auggie has the conversation we’re all expecting she might not welcome it like she would have because she’s become hardened and bitter and she already let go of that dream with Auggie once when he was engaged. I think if Auggie says something now it won’t go anywhere for the time being and just frustrate all the fans who are hopin for it. Besides, you’re all right. The chemistry hasn’t been the same this season with Auggie and Annie an if that doesn’t change soon and fast- I don’t see a relationship happening. At least not now. They’ll prob regroup and build on it some more until EVERYBODY wants them to be together so badly they are glued to the TV. That episode will be something to watch I’ll bet!