USA Network has built ad campaigns around the phrase "Characters welcome," and FBI agent Peter Connelly, played by Jason Isaacs in "Dig," is a seriously interesting character.

"The man who is tasked with saving the world in many ways is a complicated, broken, tough, fragile, dogged, real recognizable human being," Isaacs says.

amNewYork spoke with Isaacs about "Dig," which is built around an ancient conspiracy that could change history. The show premieres Thursday night.

What were some of your favorite places to film?

It's impossible to say what was my favorite because it was just a feast from the beginning. We started in Jerusalem ... underneath and behind and inside and on top of the most holy and controversial places in the world. You could feel the passion and the history and fanaticism in the air and whether you have or you don't have faith, you can't ignore the atmosphere that is enriched there.

You play the hero here, and you're also known for villains, like Lucious Malfoy in "Harry Potter." What do you enjoy about playing each of those extremes?

Well I don't play either of them actually. I just play what the person needs. Peter makes some very questionable choices in this when it comes to his relationships. ... And similarly, playing Lucious Malfoy, he was just a man scared of the future. ... I just try to play a human being struggling to do the right thing as he saw it. And in the same way Peter tries to do the right thing as he sees it, they just came from different backgrounds.

Your Israeli co-star Ori Pfeffer is great.

[He] is a phenomenal actor who has a very powerful alpha male presence that certainly keeps you on your toes, and was not backing down to either Peter or Jason on the screen and that was both a challenge and bruising in many ways.

Is "Dig" built for another season?

I'm not thinking anything beyond that, I just want people to come and enjoy it because it's such an enormous amount of talent doing something which happens very rarely on television -- telling a story with a beginning, middle and end.