Zachary Levi switches gears from playing the goofy star of Chuck to something much darker in his new thriller, Heroes Reborn.

The gregarious actor admits the role is a bit of a left turn for those familiar with the hero of his defunct beloved spy dramedy.

“The tone of these two shows is very different. In Chuck there was a lot of lightheartedness, there was a charm, there was a heart,” Levi said during a stop in Toronto to promote the series in June.

“And Heroes is a dark and complicated world and I play a dark and complicated guy.”

Since his cult NBC series left the air in 2012, Levi has tackled material on big and small screens including the stop-motion comedy Robot Chicken and the super-hero spectacle Thor: The Dark World, in which he played the warrior Fandral.

But Heroes Reborn arguably resets his career with his darkest role yet — his character Luke is a vigilante bent on exacting vengeance for the death of his son.

Show Trailer: Heroes Reborn

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Show Trailer: Heroes Reborn

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‘Heroes Reborn’ 1 of 6 television series recognized at TIFF

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TIFF featuring TV series ‘Heroes Reborn’ in its high-profile lineup of programming

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‘Heroes Reborn’ star Zachary Levi doesn’t understand how to get around Toronto effectively




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The show continues Tim Kring’s saga of ordinary people suddenly bestowed with superhuman abilities, introduced in the four-season Heroes.

Levi said the new story picks up five years later, with a war brewing between those with abilities and those without.

Jack Coleman reprises his role as HRG, a.k.a. Noah Bennet, while other returning characters include Greg Grunberg as Matt Parkman and Masi Oka as Hiro Nakamura.

New characters include the awkward teen Tommy, played by Robbie Kay, who learns of a new ability that terrifies him; and Tokyo’s quiet Miko, played by Kiki Sukezane, who is searching for her missing father while hiding an extraordinary secret.

Without detailing his own character’s arc, Levi noted this is a world where many regular humans are shaken by the fact their neighbours possess what could be dangerous powers.

“Lots of bad things are happening. Some people with powers abuse them and some people without abilities are afraid of them and fighting back.”

Heroes Reborn debuts Thursday on Global and NBC.

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