He’s the vice guy.
Yeah. He’s becoming dangerous for the safety I think of Lucrezia as well, and with Lucrezia being the one thing that I cherish the most I think a point will come where a decision needs to be made about Juan and what we do around him in the position that he’s in.

You guys sword fight and then you have that really crazy horse race. Last year we cleared up the fact that you didn’t fall off the horse. (Read "Francois Arnaud clears up a horse tale") Anything you need to tell me about concerning that horse race? That must have been scary.
Yeah, I didn’t fall off the horse. But it was crazy actually. It’s a bareback race, so it’s pretty intense. The difficulty with the bareback thing actually, is to be stable on the horse without squeezing your thighs and giving the horse contradicting signals.

I had an amazing horse. It was coming from Spain specifically for the race and I don’t know that I was ready, but I wanted to do it so I did it all myself. But they wouldn’t let me, actually, when we started shooting. For insurance purposes they thought I hadn’t had enough training. Well, I had a lot, but it was a big race.

Honestly, we shoot in bits and pieces so we don’t have to do the whole race at once, but you still have to like attain a certain speed. So I asked them to just let me do the starting line to a little ways, and that went well. After we shot they said, “Well OK, you can just do it.”

It’s amazing that because our characters are leading the race we’re in front of everybody else. So if we ended up falling we would have had like eight horses just riding over us. It was really thrilling.

And we were in new sets as well. The back lot is much bigger this year. You can really feel that you’re racing along in the back streets, so that was really cool.

I heard that you got injured this season.
I got injured, yeah, I did, but not on the set. It was another thing that was completely unrelated to “The Borgias.”

You broke your elbow?
Yeah, I broke my elbow. It wasn’t while I was filming. It was out in the streets of Budapest. I was running and I just tripped over something and fell on my elbow.

Actually, I think we managed to hide it pretty well. We changed the shooting order for a couple of scenes, but it’s for the last two episodes I think that I was injured, that I was like, I had my arm in a cast for a couple of weeks maybe. Then I had to do physical therapy and I’m back in good shape now, almost. But I don’t think it’ll show. We just managed to tweak the cast a little bit. I think my arm is bent in a couple of more scenes than usual. But I’m always holding something. Honestly, I think if you don’t talk about it people won’t know.

You’re OK now?
Yeah, better, yeah.

I remember last year you said that you feel there’s a lot of you in Cesare and if that’s the case, I hope we never meet in a dark alley after watching you this season.
Yeah. [Laughs.] I think I bring a lot of myself to the character, but it’s not necessarily in our actions that we are alike, luckily. But in a way I feel that I could, not in an actually violent way like to other people, but he has this rage that I understand, and he has this ambition and he has this loyalty to the ones he loves which I understand. But the worse thing that can happen in a dark alley is me breaking an elbow. 

Did anything surprise you more about Cesare this season?
He always surprises me because he’s just changing so much and he’s evolving so much. … I feel that by the end of Season 2 Cesare’s transformation is complete and … it’s like someone completely different than he was a year ago. I think that’s exciting and that’s why it’s not boring to be on a show like this for that long, because it doesn’t feel like it’s repeating the same thing over and over again. It’s not like “House.”

I agree with you. I think these four episodes are a lot different and a lot more, I don’t know, action-packed, sinister, than the whole of the first season. Everybody starts going off in their own directions.