How Ted Lasso's Jason Sudeikis Riled Up Nick Mohammed for Intense Scenes

Ted Lasso's Nick Mohammed spoke to E! News about getting into the zone to play a meaner Nate Shelley in season two.

By Cydney Contreras Jun 15, 2022 11:35 PMTags
Watch: What Pep Talk Would Ted Lasso Give Jason Sudeikis at Emmys?

Some actors may go method to achieve a believable performance, but for Ted Lasso's Nick Mohammed, he's just acting. 

"At the end of the day, whatever you're doing, whoever you're portraying, whatever the situation—it is pretend," he told E! News. "It can never be the real experience."

Yes, at times it feels real when you're watching the Apple TV+ show, but it's not like Nick went out and started bullying people to prepare for Nate Shelley's villainous transformation in season two. Instead, he leaned on his co-stars to guide his performance. 

Nick recalled preparing for his intense shouting match with Jason Sudeikis' Ted, a scene that set the stage for Nate's departure as AFC Richmond's assistant coach. "In terms of sort of working myself up, Jason—he asked if he was alright to do this—but very much was sort of kind of getting into my space and almost being Nate's bad demon," Nick said, adding that Jason told him things like, "You're rubbish. You're a failure. They're going to lose this game because of you."

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Nick continued, "He was kind of winding me up in between takes, and in a really useful way. We sort of half stayed in character, but that certainly wasn't method because as soon as they called cut, we just went to lunch and it was fine."

Courtesy of Apple TV+

Although there's a slight cooling off process after a scene like that, Nick said it was just another day at work. He even joked, "I think it was probably more hardcore for the people who were watching it behind the monitors, because they were just seeing it again and again."

From a viewer's perspective, season two was certainly more intense than the debut episodes, but Nick reasoned that the writers had to introduce heavier topics to further the characters' stories. For Nate, that meant exploring his contentious relationship with his father, who was a large and demeaning presence in Nate's youth. In unpacking this aspect of Nate's personal life, viewers saw how he became so mean to the new kit guy and the players.

Nick explained, "Because that's all Nate has ever known, it makes a lot easier for him to kind of adopt that when he then gets a little bit of power and responsibility."

Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

And while Nate is riding a high after becoming the new manager of West Ham United at the end of season two, Nick said that the new episodes of Ted Lasso will see the fallout of his actions. "There has to be some reckoning, whether it's a positive or negative outcome," he teased, stopping short of spoiling the show. "There's stuff to deal with there."

The first two seasons of Ted Lasso are streaming now on Apple TV+.

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