Christopher Polk/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
July 22, 2014 07:40 PM

While fans gear up for Sharknado 2: The Second One, Ian Ziering says he’s still surprised that the original film became such a hit in the first place.

“Like everyone else out there that’s seen Sharknado, I didn’t think it was the greatest movie ever,” a candid Ziering tells PEOPLE. “But what I was so scared of – people have embraced.”

In the newest installation, there are sharks in the subway, in taxi cabs and biting his costars (Watch out, Tara Reid!). Sure, it’s absurd. But who doesn’t enjoy a little mid-summer escapism, Ziering points out.

“If you see someone running through the background who had their legs chewed off in a previous scene, it’s part of the campy fun,” he says.

It’s fun Ziering almost took a pass on. Though he didn’t actually want to take the role in the first Sharknado, his wife Erin forced the issue. “She told me, ‘You need to go back to work,’ ” he says. “So I took one for the team.”

But when it came time for the sequel, Ziering didn’t hesitate to sign on.

“Now knowing what really to expect and what they’re capable of, you trust them more,” he says. “The technology is a little better this time, and the script is even more ambitious. When I first read halfway through the first page, the action starts and it doesn’t stop ever. It’s really a great movie.”

Sharknado 2 premieres July 30 at 9 p.m. ET on Syfy.

Ian Ziering on the set of Sharknado 2 in 2014
Richie Buxo/Splash News Online

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