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'Strike Back: Shadow Warfare': The boys talk sex, singing and stunts

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Strike Back is returning to Sky1 - and if you're looking for an action-packed, adrenalin-fuelled thrill ride, you could do a hell of a lot worse than Philip Winchester and Sullivan Stapleton's high-octane drama series…

But, now in its fourth series, there's a few changes in store for Strike Back - not only is Robson Green joining the regular cast as SAS legend Philip Locke, but we're going to see a softer side to Scott (Stapleton) and Stonebridge (Winchester).

Sullivan Stapleton as Sgt. Damien Scott in Strike Back: 'Shadow Warfare' (Season 4)

© Sky / David Bloomer/Left Bank Pictures

Sullivan Stapleton in Strike Back: Shadow Warfare



"You see more of a vulnerable side to Scott this series," Aussie star Stapleton confirms. "There's a definite change - it's almost like he's growing up…"

Both Stapleton - 'Sully' to his friends - and Winchester were keen that their characters be portrayed as "humans" and not "superheroes" in this latest run of Strike Back.

"They have to be vulnerable, they have to be broken, they have to have a whole slew of things that make them people," insists Winchester.

"You've got to care for these guys and there has to be a possibility that they're going to get killed or maimed. We don't want to be in a show that's just blunt force trauma - you've got to care about the people."

"We can all blow s**t up and kill people - that's the easy part," Stapleton adds in agreement. "But we're trying to add some realism and more human elements to these dudes - that's the struggle."

Sullivan Stapleton as Sgt. Damien Scott in Strike Back: 'Shadow Warfare' (Season 4)

© Sky / Liam Daniel/Left Bank Pictures

Sullivan Stapleton in Strike Back: Shadow Warfare



But while the sex scenes may have been "toned down" this series, the action certainly hasn't and there's still plenty here for Strike Back fans to enjoy - in fact, Shadow Warfare is the first series that's been devised with the show's growing fanbase specifically in mind…

"There's been a shift in wanting to make a show for the fans that we have now," Winchester explains. "Keeping it Strike Back, but making it interesting and not just the same, which can happen in a third or fourth season."

Philip Winchester as Sgt. Michael Stonebridge in Strike Back: 'Shadow Warfare' (Season 4)

© Sky / David Bloomer/Left Bank Pictures

Philip Winchester in Strike Back: Shadow Warfare



One big change this year is the aforementioned addition of Green, who stars as the new head of Section 20 - Stonebridge and Scott's boss - an apparently "upstanding" man with a "corrosive secret".

"Robson Green - various number one singles… does a show about fishing… we heard it all," grins Stapleton. "It was day one - ten seconds in. 'Have you heard my song? Google me'."

However, Green insists that he has contributed more to Strike Back than on-set singing sessions.

"I was hanging out of a helicopter firing an M-32 grenade launcher at a terrorist cell!" he recalls. "There is a bit of action for me… but running to me is defined as a stunt. Last time I did anything military, it was in Soldier Soldier!"

Robson Green in Strike Back: 'Shadow Warfare' (Season 4)

© Sky / Liam Daniel/Left Bank Pictures

Robson Green in Strike Back: Shadow Warfare



You've got to adapt to survive, Stapleton and Winchester both agree - and with Strike Back revamped and looking better than ever, the pair both say they see no reason why the series couldn't continue for many years to come.

"We're still having fun after three years," Stapleton says. "I've heard of those casts that don't get along - I'd be out. We're in every scene together - if we didn't get along, we'd be f**ked!"

Philip Winchester as Sgt. Michael Stonebridge in Strike Back: 'Shadow Warfare' (Season 4)

© Sky / Liam Daniel/Left Bank Pictures

Philip Winchester in Strike Back: Shadow Warfare



If Strike Back does return for a fifth series, the pair promise that it'll keep on changing - and expanding...

"That's a huge challenge, 'cos we're three years in," acknowledges Winchester. "There's been a lot of crazy storylines and crazy stunts - and we've got to keep thinking outside the box."

Strike Back: Shadow Warfare begins on Monday, October 28 at 9pm on Sky1. The first episode is also available to watch now via SkyGo.

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