The River Interview: Shaun Parkes on Mysticism, Mystery to Come

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You might not see a great deal of Shaun Parkes on The River - the new scary drama that premieres tomorrow night on ABC - but you'll see a lot of what his character sees.

Indeed, Parkes portrays A.J. Poulain on the drama, one of the cameraman along for a journey that will take various men and women through the swamps of the Amazon.

"There's a lot of folk lore involved with the show, a lot of mysticism and mystery," Parkes told me over the phone. "There are things out there that we don't know anything about."

Shaun Parkes Promo Pic

The River centers on the search for Emmett Cole, a "Steve Irwin type," as Parkes describes, who has gone missing and whose family is intent on tracking down. In doing so, they hire a camera crew to track their information recovery.

It's through these cameramen that viewers are treated to shaky, documentary-esque shots. (The series is co-created by Oren Peli, the writer of Paranormal Activity.)

"The camera work is not some style imposed on the show," Parkes explained. "It follows a long of logic from what's going on, of these people being on the adventure with their subjects."

And those subjects will encounter some seriously strange stuff.

"Producers didn't want to create a show that was dependent on what a monster looks like," the actor said. "This isn't Cloverfield, it isn't Super 8. It's about a group of people reacting to what's around them."

Such as?

"Some tribes, some kind of entities, a ghost perhaps," Parkes teased. "We're really not sure as we go about the search."

The search begins at 9 p.m. Tuesday night on ABC. Visit TV Fanatic immediately after the two-hour premiere airs for a detailed review.

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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