Richard Coyle, who plays Caiaphas in NBC’s miniseries A.D.: The Bible Continues, told reporters today there was a lot of joking on set, which “helped immensely” during production. “The material was so intense you had to have a sense of humor,” he explained to press during NBCU Summer Press Day – speed dating for reporters and NBCU summer shows.

[Watch] A.D. Trailer The Life of Jesus Christ's Final Days“When you’ve got extras baying for blood, and I condemn [Jesus] … those kind of days really take it out of you, and yeah, you want a beer: ‘Let’s share a beer and put that away now,'” Coyle explained.

One reporter wondered how the actors onstage planned to spend Easter Sunday, when A.D. is set to debut. Vincent Regan, who plays Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea who orders Jesus’ execution at the behest of Caiaphas, said he’ll be at an egg hunt with his children. Caiaphas, aka Coyle, will be on an airplane but hoped he’d consume a big chocolate rabbit when he landed. 

“And how about Jesus?” the journalist asked.

“Oh, God,” Juan Pablo di Pace began, appropriately, and promised he’ll be watching the debut of A.D. on television while Skyping with his family. “I’m very much a family person,” he said. “I’ve lived away from family for so many years … they’re all in Europe.”

Regan, appearing to sense the answers weren’t providing quite the storyline the media had been looking for, jumped back in to reminisce about his childhood, when Easter Sunday always involved church, followed by a big family dinner, followed by a “great film” on TV. “Usually The Greatest Story Ever Told” –

“Or James Bond,” added Coyle.