Malina is a very unique teenage girl. From the beginning, she was told that she was destined for greatness, so she was kind of isolated from the entire world and brought up very sheltered so she could train with her powers and become as powerful as she could for that day when the world needed her to be a hero. She has a lot control over her powers, but she’s kind of involved in this huge thing that is going on, and so her powers are used in a bigger way than she’s used to. She’s trying to get ahold of that and not over-do it. Using powers take a toll on you.
What kind of impact does being told she’s destined for greatness have on her personality?
It made her very optimistic, strong-willed and confident, and have a huge sense of responsibility, especially for a 16-year-old girl. She’s very confident in who she is as a person, and believes in destiny, fate and all of that. So that definitely contributed to her as a person.
Will that optimism be put to the test?
It could be, but she’s very strongly optimistic. She’s very kind-hearted, and was brought up to be very strong, independent and confident – very stoic. At the same time, she’s a 16-year-old girl, so she has a side to her that’s much softer. She can be vulnerable, and at some points she can be down on herself because of that, but ultimately she’s very strong and very confident. I don’t think she can be broken.
When the series starts, where is Malina?
At first you’re not really introduced to Malina right away. For the first two episodes you just catch glimpses of her here and there, because she’s kind of a mystery character. She’s in the Arctic – you saw a little bit of her in the trailer – practicing her powers.
The series takes place after an event in Odessa. How has the world changed since the end of Heroes?
Heroes Reborn is definitely a lot darker and more action-packed than the original series. The series ended where Claire Bennet revealed to the world that heroes exist, and this takes place five years after all that happened. people are kind of afraid of these people with powers, who are now called ‘Evos’. So they’re hunted and prosecuted – or killed. They’re in hiding from the world.
Were you a fan of Heroes?
Oh yeah! I’m such a huge fan. I didn’t watch it when it first came out, but I binge-watched it on Netflix, and I loved, it, so I’m so happy to be a part of it.
How was the experience of working with people you’d watched in the original series?
It was amazing. It’s the best group of people on the show. We’ve had some people back from Heroes, they’re all so cool, sweet and down to earth, and we all had so much fun together.
How did you become involved with Heroes Reborn?
I initially auditioned for the role of Gatlin [Green]’s character Emily, but in the audition they had me try for another role. I didn’t know what I was auditioning for for either of the roles, because it was very secretive. It was a very quick process, I got it, and then after that I learnt who I was playing, and I was totally stoked!
Heroes Reborn comes with a ready-made fanbase – do you feel any pressure from that, and what has the fan reaction been like so far?
There’s definitely pressure. Heroes was a great show and widely loved, so we have extremely high standards that we have to meet. But at the same time, I think that people will love Heroes Reborn, I think it’s a great show – I’m not just saying that because I’m in it! – I think it’s genuinely awesome. But people are very partial to the old characters, so I think some are hesitant about watching it, but I think Heroes Reborn will do great.
Heroes Reborn will air from 24 September on NBC in the US, with a UK air date to follow. For more on the biggest TV shows, pick up the latest issue of SciFiNow.