Review of “Moon Haven”

TV Review!

"Moonhaven" key art

“Moonhaven” on AMC+ Review by Suzanne 7/20/22

I really enjoy this show. It’s an original sci-fi show that creates an interesting world of the future. Because of the ways mankind has destroyed the Earth, a team of scientists and colonists were sent to the moon to terraform some of it (with the help of an AI) into Moon Haven and figure out a way to improve the Earth for everyone. Now the people on the moon are ready to bring their Utopian ideas back to earth, but some people on earth are skeptical. Others have their own selfish motives.

Bella Sway (Emma McDonald) is a pilot who is skeptical of everything, especially the lunars. Everything is discovered through her eyes. She meets an interesting bodyguard, Tomm (Joe Manganiello) and the famous Indira Mare (Amara Karan) who communicates with the AI. A woman is murdered on Moon Haven, and two detectives investigate. The two provide a lot of humor as well as some pathos, ably played by Dominic Monaghan (Paul) and Kadeem Hardison (Arlo). There are a lot of interesting characters, and many levels of intrigue. I think any scifi fan will enjoy it.

Right now it’s airing on AMC+, but it may move to regular AMC at some point (for those of you who still have cable TV). Check it out! You can see the first episode on YouTube for free.

Interview with Emma McDonald of “Moonhaven” on AMC+ 7/8/22

MORE INFO:

Trailer

A skeptic in Paradise, Earth pilot Bella Sway is sucked into a conspiracy to gain control of Moonhaven, a utopian colony on the Moon 100 years in the future. She must team up with local detective to stop forces that want to destroy Earth’s last hope before they are destroyed themselves. Watch new episodes weekly.

Starring: Emma McDonald, Dominic Monaghan, Joe Manganiello
Directed by: Bridget Savage Cole, Danielle Krudy, Laura Belsey, David Caffery

AMC+ logo

AMC+ SUSPENSE THRILLER ‘MOONHAVEN’ FROM PETER OCKO

New Series Starring Emma McDonald, Joe Manganiello and Dominic Monaghan to Debut July 7 Exclusively on AMC+

AMC+ is excited to share the upcoming suspense thriller Moonhaven from creator Peter Ocko (Lodge 49, Black SailsElementary) in the two-episode premiere on Thursday, July 7 exclusively on AMC+. The series is set in a utopian colony on the moon that may hold the keys to preserving life on Earth, which has become increasingly perilous, and features an acclaimed ensemble cast including Emma McDonald (Queens of Mystery), Dominic Monaghan (LostAmara Karan (Doctor Who), Ayelet Zurer (Losing Alice), Joe Manganiello (True Blood), Kadeem Hardison (Black Monday), and Yazzmin Newell (The Last Tree).

Moonhaven centers on Bella Sway (McDonald), a lunar cargo pilot and smuggler 100 years in the future who finds herself accused of a crime and marooned on Moonhaven, a utopian community set on a 500 square mile Garden of Eden built on the Moon to find solutions to the problems that will soon end civilization on Mother Earth. A skeptic in Paradise, Bella is sucked into a conspiracy to gain control of the artificial intelligence responsible for Moonhaven’s miracles and teams with a local detective to stop the forces that want to destroy Earth’s last hope before they are destroyed themselves.

An AMC Studios production, Moonhaven is executive produced by Ocko and Deb Spera, who is a non-writing executive producer.

EPISODE DESCRIPTIONS

Episode 101 – The Pilot – Premieres Thursday, July 7

A murder on Moonhaven puts Earth’s last hope in jeopardy. During what should be a routine cargo loop to the Moon, pilot Bella Sway finds herself the subject of detective Paul Sarno’s investigation.

Episode 102 – The Detective – Premieres Thursday, July 7

Bella wants to get back to Earth, but must wait for Paul and Arlo to untangle a knot.

Emma McDonald (Bella) and Dominic Monaghan (Paul) in "Moonhaven" on AMC+Episode 103 – The Envoy – Premieres Thursday, July 14

Indira tries to get The Bridge back on track while Bella helps Paul uncover a conspiracy.

Episode 104 – Mada – Premieres Thursday, July 21

On the brink of The Bridge, Paul prepares for some difficult goodbyes.

Episode 105 – Dreadfeel – Premieres Thursday, July 28

Paul and Bella trek through unknown territory in search of Maite. Meanwhile, Arlo takes a journey of his own.

Episode 106 – The Seeker – Premieres Thursday, August 4

In the season finale, Truelune is tested like never before.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

Back to the Main Reviews Page

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

Dominic Monaghan as Paul Sarno and Kadeem Hardison as Arlo - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+

Interview with Emma McDonald

TV Interview!

 

Emma McDonald, star of "Moonhaven" on AMC+ (from her Instagram)

Interview with Emma McDonald of “Moonhaven” on AMC+ by Suzanne 7/8/22

Dominic Monaghan as Paul Sarno and Kadeem Hardison as Arlo - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+This was a fun Zoom interview with the star of this great new sci-fi show! She is the main character, Bella – the newbie who learns what’s going on from the other characters (and thus, the audience learns as well). Almost every show has this type of character, but Bella is far more than that . Emma is an amazing actress and excels in this role. Her co-stars include Dominic Monaghan (Paul), who is always great; Joe Manganiello (Tomm), Kadeem Harison (Arlo) and many others. I really enjoyed this series, and I hope you do as well. It’s totally worth the $7 per month (not to mention their other many fine shows), or you can also get it bundled with other streamers if you look around for deals. You won’t want to miss this series. It’s only airing on AMC+ (at least for now). It’s a completely original and riveting scifi series. You can also watch the first episode for free on YouTube! It’s only 6 episodes, which you can consume quickly as it sucks you right into the story.

Suzanne: I watched your show last night. Well, I had previously watched two episodes, and I watched the other four this morning.

Emma: Oh, the whole thing?

Suzanne: The whole thing. (Laughs)

Emma: Ooh!

Suzanne: I wanted more, but they did pack a lot into those six episodes, I have to say.

Emma: They did. I think [showrunner] Peter [Ocko] said it was almost treating it as, like, a prologue, in some ways, for the world… because it’s sci-fi – when you’re doing world building, it’s a lot to pack in, like you say, to develop this whole new culture and for people to understand that.

Suzanne: Yeah. No, it makes sense. It was really good.

Emma: It could be the next (???).

Emma McDonald as Bella Sway - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 6 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMCSuzanne: Yeah. Now, have you heard yet whether there’s gonna be a second season, or are they waiting to see?

Emma: Oh, I think we’re waiting to see.

Suzanne: Okay.

Emma: So hopefully we have some good fans. It’s an interesting story.

Suzanne: Yeah, definitely. I was surprised that that the showrunner created it. It was so good. I thought maybe it was based on books or something, right?

Emma: Oh, that’s lovely to hear. He’s a very clever, man, is Peter Ocko.

Suzanne: Maybe they’ll come out with some books later.

Emma: I think it started with a sort of (???). So maybe we can get someone to make a comic book. ‘Cuz I think that would be really cool.

Suzanne: That would be cool, yeah. So, tell about your audition process for this.

Emma: Yes. I auditioned first on my birthday, and that was [with] an American accent. I got the script — I got the first episode. It was an earlier draft that’s quite different than what we showed in the pilot… and yeah, I read it from cover to cover. I was just hooked by it and the character. I did my audition, and then, I think it was a few weeks later when I got a message from my manager, and he said, “They’d love to meet with you” — the producers. [I said,] “That’s amazing. Fantastic.” “And they want you to do it in your own accent.” So I was, like, “Oh, okay, cool. I can do that. Sure.” So I stayed up really late – I think it was 11:00 PM where I was in London – and I got to meet everyone, which was just so much fun… and to chat with Peter as well. And he said, in that audition, “I think you’ve got the heart of the character.” And I said, “Oh, I think so, too. Should we just stay and read the rest of the episode?” We didn’t do that, but then the next – I think it was two days later – I read with Dom [co-star Dominic Monaghan], and we were doing a chemistry read again over Zoom, which is really difficult to get…

Joe Manganiello as Tomm and Emma McDonald as Bella Sway - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+Suzanne: I imagine!

Emma: …that virtual environment. But yes, and my internet logged out, like, twice… my thing kept freezing. I was there pulling my hair out, [and I] thought, “Well, that’s it, that’s it… it’s gone.” And then a few days later, when I was working in an estate agency in Campbell (well, where I lived, sort of, cycling around between my viewings.), I got a message from my manager, saying, “You’ve got the job!” and that was it. And then a week after that, they said that they wanted me to go back to an American accent for it, and so, I was, like, “Cool!” but yeah, I was sort of elated for the next few months and then turned up in Ireland, and we started shooting.

Suzanne: Oh, wow. And, where and when did the shooting take place? How long did it take you?

Emma: During COVID time, so we were in a big utopian bubble of our own, in County Wicklow in Ireland, mostly between the Woodlands – the Locks. it was absolutely stunning, and that was all, sort of, August to November/December time. Last year. We shot it all in three months.

Suzanne: That’s fast. I guess a lot of it was done after you guys shot it. They went back and added a lot of special effects and things…?

Emma: Yeah, we did a lot on location, though.

Suzanne: Did you?

Emma: But there were a few blue screen moments, mostly involving the spaceship.

Suzanne: Right.

Emma: My baby, CAT. but yeah, a lot of it was on location… but yeah, some things added in afterwards. Great team.

Suzanne: Did they ever say what CAT stands for? I don’t think they– if they did, I don’t remember.

Emma McDonald as Bella Sway - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+Emma: I don’t know! No, that’s something I need to figure out because I should know. She’s my one sort of, I suppose, almost home within everything. She’s, I think, the place where Bella feels the most comfortable.

Suzanne: That makes sense.

Emma: Yeah. When she’s on her own, she’s in her element… she’s not got anyone, really, nearby, telling her what to do.

Suzanne: Right.

Emma: [She can] Read a book, listen to her music, and quite literally, away from everyone.

Suzanne: Is that’s something that appeals to you, or are you more of a people person?

Emma: I’m quite a people person. So, I did a bit of an experiment when I was filming, which I think came in as part of my prep as well. I lived in a little converted stables, right on the edge of a cliff.

Suzanne: Wow.

Emma: With just the sea, sort of, in front of me, nothing else. Stars. I just had, like, goats and chickens as neighbors. The nearest shop was about a 30-minute walk away, and I didn’t have any means of transport. So I, kind of, completely bubbled myself, for the whole of the filming period. And I would sort of meditate. I mean, most of the time I was on set, anyway, but that was sort of my own escape, and to, sort of, see what it would be like to be Bella.

Suzanne: Yeah.

Emma:…in the elements in Ireland.

Suzanne: So, I went to your IMdB page. It’s kind of small, and it only shows your work starting in 2019. What were you doing before that? Were you going to school, or working on your craft, or doing something else…plays?

Emma: Yes, I did a science degree. I did a math and psychology degree, so I was in that for four years.

Suzanne: oh, cool.

Emma: And then I worked predominantly in theater, in and around the UK. doing a lot of Shakespeare…some classical plays…

Suzanne: Great.

Emma: That’s what I did for a very long time… long tours. We have an incredible theater community in the UK.Emma McDonald as Bella Sway, Dominic Monaghan as Paul Sarno and Kadeem Hardison as Arlo - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+

Suzanne: Right.

Emma: I’m very proud of it, and I love it.

Suzanne: sure.

Emma: But then during lockdown, obviously, all the theaters closed.

Suzanne: Yeah.

Emma: So I did a wonderful production of “The Picture of Dorian Gray,” which was a virtual project. And it made a lot of money for regional theaters around the country, which was great. And we had an incredible team in it, you know… Steven Fry, Joanna Lumley, some legends. And so I got that, and that was my first foray into screens and working with such established, wonderful people. And then I got to audition for this, and I suppose, because I wasn’t doing [anything] and booked in month-long tours, I suddenly had this whole side of the industry opened up to me. And then luckily – very, very fortunately – Peter Ocko and the wonderful folks at AMC decided to take a chance on me, I guess.

Suzanne: I think they knoew it wasn’t that much of a chance, after they saw your work.

Emma: The screen is relatively new for me.

Suzanne: Had they seen you in play before, do you think, any of them?

Emma: No. No, not at all.

Suzanne: Okay.

Emma: So it really was taking a chance.

Emma McDonald as Bella Sway and Dominic Monaghan as Paul Sarno - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+Suzanne: Yeah, great. Well, I hope this is successful, and that you go on to bigger and better projects…but that’s great. No, it must be amazing to be in… you’re pretty much the lead character, and with your experience, it must be, at your age (I’m assuming), must be pretty amazing.

Emma: I’m on top, on top of the world, literally. I’m on the moon. Over the moon.

Suzanne: Was that under the moon? (my lame attempt at a joke based on something in the show)

Emma: Yeah. Between, yes. It was so brilliant to work with all of the creatives and such a phenomenal cast, as well, on this. For everyone to just welcome me in, and let me play, and learn. And gosh, I learned so much! I’d never even hit a mark before. On, you know, on day two, sprinting, hitting a mark. I was, like, “What’s camera left? What’s camera right?” It was like boot camp into school.

Suzanne: Yeah. Wow.

Emma: But it was so much fun, so much.

Suzanne: I’m sure.

Emma: And I got to do all sorts. I got to fly a spaceship. I got to do stunts. I got to have these beautiful human interactions that were deep and thoughtful. I mean, it’s such a wonderful show. It’s got so much within it. You’ve got sci-fi, you’ve got the human drama. You’ve got so, so much raw emotion, huge ideas and concepts…

Suzanne: Right?

Emma: Everything.

Suzanne: Yeah. No, it’s great. I’m sure that one of the things they liked about you is that your face is very expressive, and your character doesn’t really say as much as other people, I noticed. She’s quiet, very quiet, and they’ll ask her something, and she’ll just kind of look at them and not necessarily respond. And you’re very good at that, at that expressiveness.

Emma: Yeah. She’s an interesting one because she chooses when to use words and when to not. Like you say, she, she doesn’t speak if she doesn’t have to.

Suzanne: Yeah.

Emma: She takes everything in…in, I think her military background as well, you know, she buries her emotions deep, but we see those unfold and come out more as the season progresses. But yeah, you’re right. I am quite like a high energy person, so, for me, some of the trouble was to really keep it (faint?}, which in itself was a whole different challenge… but a fun one. And yeah, I love to play with her lightness, as well as her heart, and her humor – and her judgment, when it comes out. It was Emma McDonald as Bella Sway and Adam Isla O'Brien as Strego Nall - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+a lot of fun.

Suzanne: Okay. And yeah, you mentioned the stunts. So, you did your own stunts, or just some of them, or what?

Emma: All of them.

Suzanne: Oh, wow.

Emma: Yeah, no, except for – there was one, but it got cut, so it was all fine. There was this scene where we were meant to get hoisted up in a trap. And I was so excited. I came to set, like, “Yeah, me and Dom, we’re gonna get hoisted up in a trap today! This is so much fun.” And they looked at me, like, “No, you’re not. There’s no way you’re doing that.” But I, yeah, I loved learning all the stunts… and I did have a stunt double, Belle Williams, who was amazing, and she really helped hone all of my movements. A,nd we got to work with Vic Armstrong who directed that unit of fights, and he was Harrison Ford’s stunt double.

Suzanne: Oh, wow.

Emma: A living legend. He said I was like Catwoman.

Emma McDonald as Bella Sway - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Episode 3 - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC+Suzanne: That’s great.

Emma: …And Ray Nichols as well, and Miles, were the stunt team coordinators. And yeah, it was a lot – there’s a lot of stunts throughout the season, so it’s fun to watch those happen. And I loved doing every one of them.

Suzanne: Oh, good. And one more question. So, the show just started yesterday, for the rest of the world. Have you gotten any feedback yet from viewers, on social media or anywhere?

Emma: We’ve got some incredible reviews across the board. You know, Variety, Indiewire, The Hollywood reporter, Time – everything. Everyone has come in and been so positive about it. But, like, the oppositions within the show, I mean, the Earthers and the Mooners, and the dichotomy there… it’ll be interesting to see what people make of it. And hopefully, it will stir some people up and get people talking. Because I think it could be divisive, in some ways, which is something that I find really exciting. So, yeah, we’ll see. We’ll see what happens. Who will be Team Earth? Who will be Team Moon?

Suzanne: Yeah, that should be fun. Sometimes with science fiction fans, though, they can always find something to nitpick about, or complain about. You just gotta ignore those people…

Emma: As long as they’re talking. No, I can’t wait to see what effect is has on the world.Emma McDonald as Bella Sway - Moonhaven _ Season 1, Gallery - Photo Credit: Szymon Lazewski/AMC

Suzanne: That’s good.

Emma: The world… I think the world really needs it right now.

Suzanne: Yeah, no, definitely.

Emma: It’s the whole optimistic look into the future, and a very open one at that.

Suzanne: Yeah. What’s interesting about it is – it’s partly optimistic and partly dystopian.

Emma: Yes.

Suzanne: You have both in one show, which is so unusual.

Emma: Yeah, it is. It really is.

 

MORE INFO:

Trailer

A skeptic in Paradise, Earth pilot Bella Sway is sucked into a conspiracy to gain control of Moonhaven, a utopian colony on the Moon 100 years in the future. She must team up with local detective to stop forces that want to destroy Earth’s last hope before they are destroyed themselves. Watch new episodes weekly.

Starring: Emma McDonald, Dominic Monaghan, Joe Manganiello
Directed by: Bridget Savage Cole, Danielle Krudy, Laura Belsey, David Caffery

AMC+ logo

AMC+ SUSPENSE THRILLER ‘MOONHAVEN’ FROM PETER OCKO

New Series Starring Emma McDonald, Joe Manganiello and Dominic Monaghan to Debut July 7 Exclusively on AMC+

"Moonhaven" key art

AMC+ is excited to share the upcoming suspense thriller Moonhaven from creator Peter Ocko (Lodge 49, Black SailsElementary) in the two-episode premiere on Thursday, July 7 exclusively on AMC+. The series is set in a utopian colony on the moon that may hold the keys to preserving life on Earth, which has become increasingly perilous, and features an acclaimed ensemble cast including Emma McDonald (Queens of Mystery), Dominic Monaghan (LostAmara Karan (Doctor Who), Ayelet Zurer (Losing Alice), Joe Manganiello (True Blood), Kadeem Hardison (Black Monday), and Yazzmin Newell (The Last Tree).

Moonhaven centers on Bella Sway (McDonald), a lunar cargo pilot and smuggler 100 years in the future who finds herself accused of a crime and marooned on Moonhaven, a utopian community set on a 500 square mile Garden of Eden built on the Moon to find solutions to the problems that will soon end civilization on Mother Earth. A skeptic in Paradise, Bella is sucked into a conspiracy to gain control of the artificial intelligence responsible for Moonhaven’s miracles and teams with a local detective to stop the forces that want to destroy Earth’s last hope before they are destroyed themselves.

An AMC Studios production, Moonhaven is executive produced by Ocko and Deb Spera, who is a non-writing executive producer.

EPISODE DESCRIPTIONS

Episode 101 – The Pilot – Premieres Thursday, July 7

A murder on Moonhaven puts Earth’s last hope in jeopardy. During what should be a routine cargo loop to the Moon, pilot Bella Sway finds herself the subject of detective Paul Sarno’s investigation.

Episode 102 – The Detective – Premieres Thursday, July 7

Bella wants to get back to Earth, but must wait for Paul and Arlo to untangle a knot.

Emma McDonald (Bella) and Dominic Monaghan (Paul) in "Moonhaven" on AMC+Episode 103 – The Envoy – Premieres Thursday, July 14

Indira tries to get The Bridge back on track while Bella helps Paul uncover a conspiracy.

Episode 104 – Mada – Premieres Thursday, July 21

On the brink of The Bridge, Paul prepares for some difficult goodbyes.

Episode 105 – Dreadfeel – Premieres Thursday, July 28

Paul and Bella trek through unknown territory in search of Maite. Meanwhile, Arlo takes a journey of his own.

Episode 106 – The Seeker – Premieres Thursday, August 4

In the season finale, Truelune is tested like never before.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

Back to the Primetime Articles and Interviews Page

Emma McDonald on our Zoom call

Interview with “Dark Winds” cast

TV Interview!

Dark Winds poster

Interview with TCA panel Zahn McClarnon, Kiowa Gordon, Jessica Matten, Rainn Wilson, Noah Emmerich, Chris Eyre and Graham Roland of “Dark Winds” on AMC/+ by Suzanne 2/10/22

“Dark Winds” premieres today, June 12 on AMC and AMC+. I’m most interested in its star, Zahn McClarnon (who plays Joe Leaphorn), because he was so great on “Longmire,” a show I loved. Noah Emmerich is also great (you might know him from “The Americans” on FX); and, last, but certainly not least, the cast also has Rainn Wilson, who’s always wonderful. This was a fun virtual panel back in February for the TV Critics Association.

AMC NETWORKS
CTAM PRESS TOUR WINTER 2022
AMC+ and AMC
Dark Winds
Graham Roland, Creator, Writer, Executive Producer
Chris Eyre, Director, Executive Producer
Zahn McClarnon, Cast, Executive Producer, “Joe Leaphorn”
Kiowa Gordon, Cast, “Jim Chee”
Jessica Matten, Cast, “Bernadette Manuelito”
Rainn Wilson, Cast, “Devoted Dan”
Noah Emmerich, Cast, “Special Agent Whitover”
2022 Virtual Tour
Los Angeles, CA
February 10, 2022
© 2022 AMC Networks. All rights reserved.

Here is the introduction from the clip they showed us:

Our new series “Dark Winds” is 35 years in the making. It’s based on the popular Leaphorn & Chee Book Series by Tony Hillerman. Robert Redford optioned these books more than three decades ago and we’re honored that this remarkable series has found a home with us. Our dream team is comprised of Native American Director and Executive Producer Chris Eyre, Native American Actor and Executive Producer Zahn McClarnon, who also starred in AMC’s “The Son,” Native American Writer-Creator Graham Roland, and Redford as well as George R.R. Martin who also serve as Executive Producers. We’re proud of this show for so many reasons. For starters, Leaphorn & Chee are two iconic characters that will live right alongside Don Draper, Walter White, Rick Grimes, and others in the AMC Hall of Fame. It’s a thrilling murder mystery that takes place in and around the lands of the Navajo Nation in the Monument Valley, which hasn’t been accessed for filming since the days of John Ford. And also, the series features the rich and vibrant Navajo culture and community in ways it’s never been seen before. “Dark Winds” is set to premiere this summer on AMC+ and AMC.

Zahn McClarnonZahn told us that the cast and his experience on the show were “wonderful,” and he believes the series will be a hit because of George R.R. Martin and Robert Redford being Executive Producers. He’s excited to be working at this current time because not only are there more indigenous actors in TV shows that ever, but he hopes that this show opens doors for more indigenous talent behind the scenes of the shows. He’s glad to see it happening in our “unique time … with Native representation in media.”

Zahn was then asked a specific question about his role on the show as Joe: how torn is Joe as a “police officer trying to solve this crime” and as a member of his Native community? He was also asked if he had any trouble wearing two hats (that of actor and executive producer).

Zahn reminded us that Joe “is a Navajo tribal cop who is tasked to solve these double murders and also a bank robbery.” He pointed out that many tribal police members don’t get much cooperation from the people in “indigenous communities,” and they’re made to feel like they’re outsiders. Joe is also struggling with losing someone in his family and juggling all of these things at once. He has to make peace with both the people in his community as well as the FBI, and it’s very difficult for him. Zahn is new to being executive producer, but he admits that he was given a lot of support from his fellow cast. He learned quite a bit, which he found to be very positive. He hopes to be able to use his experiences next time, either in another season of this show, or in another show. He has his “fingers crossed” for all of that.

The other actors were asked about working with Zahn and how much they knew about him before filming the series.

Kiowa said that he met Zahn in 2013. “We were working on ‘The Red Road’ for Sundance TV and he immediately was just like the coolest guy ever. And I was taking a liking to him, and I followed his career throughout there. And he’s been a huge inspiration for me, so it’s great to be able to work with him in such a capacity.”

Jessica added that she met both Zahn and Kiowa on the set of the show “Frontier.” She commented that they’ve both been like family to her, so “it was a complete joy to hop on board this and do it with family. It’s been so collaborative.” She added about Zahn, “First and foremost, I knew him as a human being and a person, and he was wonderful. And then I was like, oh, he’s kind of a big deal.” There was a bit of joking around after that.

Jessica then continued seriously about how great it is to make these friendships and then to “uplift our community in the best way that we can.” She also admitted that she is a big fan of Rainn’s, so it was extraordinary to meet him. She also confided that she “drove almost two hours to set” to meet Rainn, even though she wasn’t shooting with him. She was very nervous, so she didn’t tell him that. She joked around a bit and then said that she called him “The Beyoncé of my life.” Rainn was amazed and flattered to hear this, and he made his own jokes.

Rainn thanked her and then went on to praise the show’s scripts, set design, costume design, etc. He especially loves the ’70s feel to it and said it’s “just such a pleasure to be a part of this show.” His part is a fun supporting role, which he describes as “the epitome of corruption, which was super fun.” He predicts that Zahn will win many acting awards because of his performance in this show.

Zahn thanked Rainn as well. He mentioned his age a few times during the panel but said that he feels like he must have worked with every single Native actor or actress in the TV and film community. He noted that the cast is “exciting,” and he can’t wait for us all to see the show.

Jessica Matten and Kiowa Gordon of "Dark Winds" on AMC and AMC+.Jessica went on to praise their director, Chris Eyre: “for us Native kids growing up, the film ‘Smoke Signals’ was a very big film.” She mentioned that it “really put Natives in a very contemporary setting, so it’s very full-circle for me to be able to work with Chris…because I grew up in awe of that movie and what he created. And to be able to work [in this], it’s just magical.” She gushed quite a bit, but it was very charming.

One journalist asked Rainn about his character, “Devoted Dan,” and how he compares to Rainn’s other characters from his past work. Rainn replied that he’s never played a character like this before. He joked a bit about showing some skin in the series. He also described him in this way: “he’s a car dealer, and a double dealer, and a born-again, and a preacher, and wherever there’s corruption happening around, you’ll find Devoted Dan right in the middle of it.” He also added, “I asked for the largest cowboy hat they could find and it dwarfed my already enormous head.” He said that he’s very happy to be part of the show.

The director agreed with Rainn and also pointed out how great Noah was in this show.

Noah also said that he was grateful to be part of it, “a project that is so fundamental in bringing unheard voices to light in our culture that have not been recognized, that have not been paid attention to, that Hollywood has sort of reduced and presented cliché. This is a full, three-dimensional examination of these characters and I just was grateful to be the outsider, to be the minority. It was a new experience.”

Zahn joked with Noah by saying that he was “around a long time, too” and also praised his long and impressive résumé. There was more joking around. Noah, too, loved Chris’ movie “Smoke Signals,” which he saw in the theater.

The moderator also asked everyone how they felt to be involved with the series, which took 35 years to get here. Of course, they’re all glad to be a part of it. Kiowa was somewhat philosophical about it, saying, “I’m just saying it’s a long time coming. Good things happen to those that wait and I think we’re all born to be here and making this right now, so here we are. So thank you all for coming together and making this awesome story.”

Jessica is Canadian. She said that up there, they’re called “First Nations” and have a small network called “the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network,” where they were able to tell many stories. However, getting past that into other networks has been difficult. She’s very grateful to AMC and the others to be their allies and to “continue to humanize the experience of being indigenous in this day and age or even in the 1970s where this show is taking place.”

Chris told us that the writers on the show were all “Native American writers,” including three that were of Navajo origin. They also had support from the president of the Navajo Nation as well as Navajo consultants. He also said, “It’s been 35 years in the making, but George and Bob were both fans of Hillerman, and all of us were as well. So, to bring that to the screen now is just a dream come true.”

Graham credited Chris for being on this project the longest, along with George R.R. Martin and Robert Redford. He added, “it shows the passion that Robert Redford had for this project and the importance he thought of getting a story like this put in front of a mainstream audience. So, a lot of credit goes to him for keeping up that fight for so long. ”

Another person from the press asked Chris a tough question. He thought that the show attacks the old western movie-making from the John Ford days and disparages the actors from them, and the hotel that had rooms named after the actors. He asked if there were some bad feelings about those days. He also asked about filming in the same areas where those old westerns were made. Chris took the second question, saying he loved those areas, such as Monument Valley, and the rest of the Southwest. He thinks of it all as part of the American story, and it’s all mashed together and seen through the eyes of their characters. He avoided the first question.

Graham answered the other question with great finesse. He pointed out that the hotel, which is based on a real one, had rooms with the names of the famous actors, but many of of them were white people playing the Natives. He was quick to point out that he loves those old westerns. They had to acknowledge in this series what it was in reality, and he doesn’t think that he went out of his way to intentionally put the westerns down. It was a great end to an amazing panel!

MORE INFO:

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Based on the iconic Leaphorn & Chee book series by Tony Hillerman, Dark Winds is a psychological thriller that follows two Navajo police officers in the 1970s Southwest, as their search for clues in a grisly double murder case forces them to challenge their own spiritual beliefs and come to terms with the trauma of their pasts. Created and executive produced by Graham Roland (Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, The Returned, Almost Human, Fringe), the series stars Zahn McClarnon (The Son, Westworld, Fargo), who is also an executive producer, Kiowa Gordon (The Red Road, Roswell, New Mexico), and Jessica Matten (Tribal, Burden of Truth). Vince Calandra (Castle Rock, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, Sharp Objects) is showrunner and an executive producer. Chris Eyre is director and executive producer. Executive producers include George R.R. Martin, Robert Redford, Tina Elmo and Vince Gerardis.

AMC and AMC+ today released the trailer and key art of its upcoming original series, Dark Winds. The noir thriller, based on the iconic Leaphorn & Chee book series by Tony Hillerman, premieres Sunday, June 12 on AMC and AMC+, with the first two episodes available on AMC+. One new episode will debut every Sunday on AMC, and AMC+ subscribers will have advance access to an additional episode each week, beginning June 19.

Set in 1971 on a remote outpost of the Navajo Nation near Monument Valley, Dark Winds follows Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn (Zahn McClarnonThe Son, Westworld, Fargo) of the Tribal Police as he is besieged by a series of seemingly unrelated crimes. The closer he digs to the truth, the more he exposes the wounds of his past. He is joined on this journey by his new deputy, Jim Chee (Kiowa GordonThe Red Road, Roswell, New Mexico). Chee, too, has old scores to settle from his youth on the reservation. Together, the two men battle the forces of evil, each other and their own personal demons on the path to salvation.

Created and executive produced by Graham Roland (Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan), the AMC original series stars award-winning film and television actor Zahn McClarnon, who also serves as an executive producer, Kiowa Gordon and Jessica Matten (Tribal, Burden of Truth) as Bernadette Manuelito. Dark Winds also stars Noah Emmerich (The Americans, Suspicion) as FBI Special Agent Whitover, Deanna Allison as Joe’s wife Emma Leaphorn, and features Rainn Wilson (The Office, Backstrom) as Devoted Dan, a full-of-faith car salesman.

Vince Calandra (Castle Rock, Sharp Objects) is showrunner and executiChris Eyreve producer.  is director and executive producer. Executive producers include George R.R. Martin, Robert Redford, Tina Elmo and Vince Gerardis.

About AMC

AMC is home to some of the most popular and acclaimed programs on television. AMC was the first basic cable network to ever win the Emmy® Award for Outstanding Drama Series with Mad Men in 2008, which then went on to win the coveted award four years in a row, before Breaking Bad won it in 2013 and 2014. The network’s series The Walking Dead is the highest-rated series in cable history. AMC’s current original drama series are Better Call SaulFear the Walking Dead, Kevin Can F*** Himself, The Walking Dead, The Walking Dead: World Beyond and the forthcoming series 61st Street, Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice’s Mayfair Witches, Dark Winds, Moonhaven, Pantheon, Ragdoll and Tales of the Walking Dead, among others. AMC also explores authentic worlds and discussion with original shows like Talking DeadAMC Visionaries and Ride with Norman Reedus. AMC is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc. and its sister networks include IFC, SundanceTV, BBC America and WE tv. AMC is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile.

About AMC+

AMC+ is the company’s new premium streaming bundle featuring an extensive lineup of popular and critically acclaimed original programming from AMC, BBC America, IFC, and SundanceTV and full access to targeted streaming services Shudder, Sundance Now and IFC Films Unlimited, which feature content such as A Discovery of WitchesCreepshow, and Boyhood. The service features a continually refreshed library of commercial-free content, including fan favorites Mad Men, Halt & Catch Fire, Turn: Washington’s Spies, Hell on Wheels, NOS4A2Orphan Black, Rectify, Portlandia, and series from The Walking Dead Universe, among many others. The service also offers a growing slate of original and exclusive series including Gangs of London, Kin, The North Water, RagdollThe Beast Must Die, Too Close, The Salisbury Poisonings, Cold Courage, Spy CityUltra City Smiths, Anna, Anne Boleyn, Firebite, La Fortuna, That Dirty Black Bag and upcoming The Ipcress File. AMC+ recently launched in Canada, Australia, and India and is available in the U.S. through AMCPlus.com, the AMC+ app, and a number of digital and cable partners.

Zahn McClarnon

Zahn McClarnon is an award winning film and television actor who has appeared in over 80 film and television productions. He is most known for his role as “Hanzee Dent” in the second installment of the critically- acclaimed series Fargo, his recurring role of “Akecheta” on HBO’s award- winning series Westworld, and for his portrayal of “Officer Mathias” on the television series Longmire.

Zahn was also a series regular on National Geographic’s Barkskins, starring opposite Marcia Gay Harden and David Thewlis, and on the AMC show The Son. McClarnon has most recently co-starred in the crime-thriller The Silencing starring alongside Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, and in the Stephen King film, Doctor Sleep. Zahn is currently recurring on the upcoming FX series Reservation Dogs, the much anticipated Disney+ series Hawkeye, and stars in the upcoming film The Last Manhunt with Jason Momoa. McClarnon is currently starring in and an executive producer for the AMC series Dark Winds.

Kiowa Gordon

Kiowa is a prolific Native American actor with award winning film and television credits. Born in Berlin, Germany, he moved to the States shortly thereafter to live on the Hualapai Indian Reservation in Peach Springs, AZ and moved around quite a bit growing up until settling down in Phoenix, AZ where he landed the role of Embry Call in THE TWILIGHT SAGA. In 2013, Kiowa won Best Supporting Actor at the American Indian Film Festival in San Francisco for his role in the indie film, THE LESSER BLESSED. On the small screen, Kiowa had a Series Regular role in the Sundance original series, THE RED ROAD, starring Jason Momoa, Julianne Nicholson and Martin Henderson and Guest Starred on the Netflix series FRONTIER. In 2019, he had lead roles in 2 features which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival – BLOOD QUANTUM (multiple festival nom and winner) from director Jeff Barnaby and CASTLE IN THE GROUND (TIFF nominated for best Canadian feature) from director Joey Klein. That year he also had roles in the Netflix comedy LADY DYNAMITE, a recurring in the technologically groundbreaking series THE LIBERATOR from A+E Studios for Netflix, and a recurring role on the CW series ROSWELL.

More recent work includes a lead in the feature TWO EYES, directed by award winning filmmaker Travis Fine which was the closing film at Outfest 2020, and a cameo in Taika Waititi’s RESERVATION DOGS (FX).

Up next, he just wrapped his Series Regular role as JIM CHEE on the forthcoming series DARK WINDS for AMC, based on the book series from Tom Hillerman, and produced by George R. R. Martin and Robert Redford.

Jessica Mattsen

Jessica Matten is of Red River Metis-Cree descent and is directly a descendant of Cuthbert Grant, the first rebel Metis leader famously known for the Battle of the Seven Oaks in Canada. Most recently, Jessica is set to star in Robert Redford, George R.R. Martin (Game of Thrones) and Graham Roland’s produced “Dark Winds” television series opposite Zahn McClarnon and Kiowa Gordon for the AMC Network this Fall 2021.

Jessica is the star and Associate Producer of the new critically acclaimed Crime Drama “Tribal” Season 2 the on APTN Network.

Jessica stars in Season 3 of Discovery Canada & Netflix’s TV show “Frontier” starring Jason Momoa. She also can be seen in the new CW Network and CBC drama alongside Kristin Kruek in “Burden of Truth”. Jessica also can be seen in the upcoming comic adaptation movie “The Empty Man” for Disney/20th Century Fox studios.

Jessica can be seen on 3 Canadian Screen Award nominated and winning shows: Frontier, Blackstone and Mohawk Girls.

Jessica has developed a small cult following in North America for her performance in the starring role of Elle-Maija Tailfeather’s short film, “A Red Girl’s Reasoning”. Other TV and films include the Gemini award winning show “Blackstone” and “Pilgrims” written and directed by Marie Clements that Jessica starred in, was an official selection for the Cannes Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival 2013.

Besides acting, Jessica runs an Indigenous wellness and fitness company with her family called Lemon Cree where they have helped thousands of Indigenous people achieve their fitness, wellness and health goals. She also runs the viral campaign #N8Vgirls to help spread awareness globally on the issue of murdered and missing Indigenous women in Canada.

She is currently in development with Herd of 1 Media with Julian Black Antelope creating an Indigenous Film Academy. The Counting Coup Indigenous Film Academy (“CCIFA”) is a progressive, state-of-the-art, holistic educational environment for intense creative work, where emerging and aspiring First Nations artists can effectively and successfully gain expertise and experience and establish the foundations of a professional film career.

Jessica ran multiple monthly articles and the magazine “Active Cree” distributed monthly to 60,000 people and 10 communities across the James Bay area throughout Northern Ontario. She is a guest speaker along with her mother across North America called: “Indigenous Women Breaking Barriers: A Mother and Daughter Story”. Jessica also instructs acting workshops, and has had many wonderful success stories with the youth over the years.

Rainn Wilson

Rainn Wilson is an American television and movie actor, director, writer, and producer. He became a household name in 2005 with his inimitable portrayal of ‘Dwight Schrute’ in the U.S. version of the popular British sitcom, The Office. His first breakthrough role came when he played assistant mortician ‘Arthur Martin’ in HBO’s Six Feet Under, winning him a Screen Actors Guild Award for “Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series.” He then went on to appear in films like Almost Famous, House of 1000 Corpses, and America’s Sweethearts. Wilson catapulted to fame during his nine seasons on the Emmy-winning comedy, The Office, in which he also directed three episodes. He has starred in films like The Rocker, Monsters vs. Aliens, The Meg, and Don’t Tell A Soul. On the TV side, Wilson has also starred in the Fox crime drama Backstrom, where he played the lead role of ‘Everett Backstrom,’ and in Amazon Prime’s Utopia as ‘Michael Stearns.’

Wilson has an MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and spent ten years doing theatre in New York before moving to Los Angeles. Wilson founded the YouTube channel Soul Pancake, which has over 3.5 million subscribers, and he published his memoir The Bassoon King: My Life in Art, Faith, and Idiocy in 2015. He is originally from Seattle, Washington.

Rainn Wilson will next be seen opposite Bryan Cranston and Annette Bening in the film Jerry and Marge Go Large for Paramount+ and as ‘Devoted Dan’ in AMC’s Dark Winds.

Noah Emmerich

Noah Emmerich recently completed the Netflix feature “The Good Nurse” opposite Jessica Chastain and Eddie Redmayne. He is currently shooting the AMC series “Dark Winds” and will next be seen starring in the Apple series “Suspicion” opposite Uma Thurman. On the comedic side, Emmerich continues his role of “General Kick Grabaston” opposite Steve Carrell in the Netflix series “Space Force.” He was last seen co-starring in the Netflix mini-series “The Spy” opposite Sacha Baron Cohen.

Emmerich’s breakout performance was in Ted Demme’s cult hit “Beautiful Girls” alongside Natalie Portman, Uma Thurman, and Matt Dillon. His next role, opposite Jim Carrey in Peter Weir’s Academy Award-nominated “The Truman Show,” firmly established his outstanding talent.

Emmerich’s film work includes Todd Field’s Academy Award nominated “Little Children” (Kate Winslet), J.J. Abrams’ “Super 8,” Gavin O’Connor’s “Pride & Glory” (Edward Norton, Colin Farrell), Doug Liman’s “Fair Game” (Naomi Watts, Sean Penn), “Sympathy for Delicious” (Mark Ruffalo), “Miracle” (Kurt Russell), “Frequency” (Dennis Quaid), “Beyond Borders” (Angelina Jolie, Clive Owen), “Windtalkers” (Nicolas Cage), “Life” (Eddie Murphy, Martin Lawrence), “Copland” (Sylvester Stallone, Robert DeNiro, Harvey Keitel), Guillaume Canet’s “Blood Ties” (Marion Cotillard, Clive Owen, and Zoe Saldana), “Warrior” (Tom Hardy, Joel Edgerton), and “Jane Got A Gun” (Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor) and “The Wild Wedding” (Glenn Close, John Malkovich).

Emmerich played FBI Agent Stan Beeman opposite Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys on F/X’s critically acclaimed drama series “The Americans.” His performance was recognized with a Critic’s Choice Award and a SAG Award nomination. He also appeared to great acclaim as Dr. Edwin Jenner in Frank Darabont’s long running hit series “The Walking Dead.” He has guest starred on shows including “The West Wing,” “Monk,” and “Master of None.”

Emmerich’s stage work includes Stephen Belber’s “Fault Lines” at the Cherry Lane (dir. David Schwimmer) and the Kennedy Center’s production of “A Streetcar Named Desire” opposite Patricia Clarkson.

Emmerich received an honors degree in history from Yale University and studied filmmaking at New York University. He was born and raised in New York City, where he currently resides.

Chris Eyre

Chris Eyre (Cheyenne/Arapaho) is an internationally recognized film and television director and producer who has received many awards for his work including, a Peabody (1998, 2009), an Emmy (2005) and the Sundance Audience Award and Sundance Filmmaker’s Trophy (1998).

Eyre began his career by attended the graduate film program at New York University and went on to the Sundance Institute’s Directors’ Lab being mentored by Robert Redford in 1995.

Chris Eyre’s directorial debut was the Miramax Classic Film “SMOKE SIGNALS (1998),” which won Eyre the 1998 Sundance Filmmakers’ Trophy and the 1998 Sundance Audience Award. 20 years later, in 2018, “SMOKE SIGANALS (1998) was inducted by the U.S. Library of Congress to the National Film Registry for movies “of historic and cultural significance to be preserved for all time.”

Eyre’s television credits as a director include multiple episodes of “FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS” (NBC) and work on “LAW AND ORDER – SVU” (NBC), as well as directing the award-winning dramatic mini-series “WE SHALL REMAIN” (2009) for PBS.

Eyre’s film “EDGE OF AMERICA (2004)” was selected as the “Opening Night” film at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, and garnered Eyre the highly prestigious, Outstanding Directorial Achievement from the Directors Guild of America (DGA) in 2005.

Eyre has directed and/or produced over fifteen-feature films. Including Eyre’s SXSW award winner for Best Cinematography “HIDE AWAY (2012)” starring Josh Lucas and James Cromwell released theatrically in May 2012.

In 2015, Eyre executive produced the documentary feature film “THE SEVENTH FIRE (2015),” with fellow producers Terrence Malick and Natalie Portman. In 2016, THE SEVENTH FIRE was invited to screen at The White House in Washington, D.C.

In 2017, Eyre was named annual-honorary Chair at the University of Hawaii in memory of the late Senator Daniel Inouye. Later 2017, Eyre’s company created and supervised the cultural team that advised language and Cheyenne Native American culture for the Christian Bale feature film “HOSTILES (2018)” directed by Scott Cooper.

Chris Eyre is currently directing a television series, DARK WINDS with fellow producers George RR Martin (Game of Thrones) and Robert Redford for AMC Networks.

Chris Eyre resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Chris Eyre is represented by Frank Wuliger at the Gersh Agency, manager Andrew Hersh at Thrive Entertainment and attorney Eric Feig in Los Angeles.

Graham Roland

Graham is a former US Marine and has written on PRISON BREAK, LOST, FRINGE, and THE RETURNEDGraham would later co-create JACK RYAN with Carlton Cuse, which has already been ordered for a fourth season. In addition to his work in television, Graham also wrote and executive produced MILE 22 for Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg.

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The actors, director and creator of "Dark Winds" at the TCA panel in February.

Interview with Tosin Cole

TV Interview!

Tosin Cole of "61st Street" on AMC

Interview with Tosin Cole of “61st Street” on AMC by Suzanne 4/12/22

It was great to speak with Tosin because he’s an amazing actor. I really loved him on “Doctor Who” and was so sorry that he left there. He’s gone on to bigger and better roles, though, such as his outstanding work in this series. You should really make sure to watch it!

We’ll have the transcript up here at some point!

MORE INFO: Official Trailer

61st Street posterAMC Networks announced today the premiere date for its highly anticipated new drama 61st Street, starring Emmy®-winner Courtney B. Vance,  ahead of the series’ world premiere at SXSW.  From BAFTA-winner Peter Moffat, J. David Shanks and Michael B. Jordan’s Outlier Society, the series debuts Sunday, April 10 at 10pm ET/PT on AMC, with the first two episodes streaming on AMC+ and ALLBLK. New episodes will rollout  weekly, on Sundays, and be available one week early on AMC+ and ALLBLK.

From AMC Studios, 61st Street is a propulsive thriller which courses through the dark heart of the infamous Chicago criminal justice system as police and prosecutors investigate a deadly drug bust that threatens to unravel the police department’s code of silence. Vance (The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story, Lovecraft Country), leads an ensemble cast that includes Emmy®-nominee Aunjanue Ellis (When They See Us, King Richard), Mark O’Brien (City on a Hill, Blue Bayou), Holt McCallany (Mindhunter, Lights Out), Tosin Cole (Doctor Who, Hollyoaks), Andrene Ward-Hammond (Your Honor, Manifest) and Bentley Green (Snowfall, Sweet Magnolias).

The series is executive produced by Moffat (The Night Of, Your Honor), Shanks  (The Chi, Seven Seconds, Shots Fired), Outlier Society’s Jordan and Elizabeth Raposo (Just Mercy, David Makes Man), Alana Mayo (Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse, Just Mercy), Jeff Freilich (Lodge 49, Dispatches from Elsewhere) and Hilary Salmon (MotherFatherSon, The Night Of, London Spy).

About AMC Networks Inc.

Tosin Cole in "61st Street" on AMCAMC Networks is a global entertainment company known for its popular and critically acclaimed content. Its portfolio of brands includes AMC, BBC AMERICA (operated through a joint venture with BBC Studios), IFC, SundanceTV, WE tv, IFC Films, and a number of fast-growing streaming services, including the AMC+ premium streaming bundle, Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now and ALLBLK. AMC Studios, the Company’s in-house studio, production and distribution operation, is behind award-winning owned series and franchises, including The Walking Dead, the highest-rated series in cable history. The Company also operates AMC Networks International, its international programming business, and 25/7 Media, its production services business.

About AMC+

AMC+ is the company’s new premium streaming bundle featuring an extensive lineup of popular and critically acclaimed original programming from AMC, BBC America, IFC, and SundanceTV and full access to targeted streaming services Shudder, Sundance Now and IFC Films Unlimited, which feature content such as A Discovery of Witches, Creepshow, and Boyhood. The service features a continually refreshed library of commercial-free content, including fan favorites Mad Men, Halt & Catch Fire, Turn: Washington’s Spies, Hell on Wheels, NOS4A2, Rectify, Orphan Black, Portlandia, and series from The Walking Dead Universe, among many others. The service also offers a growing slate of original and exclusive series including Gangs of London, Kin, The North Water, Ragdoll, The Beast Must Die, Too Close, The Salisbury Poisonings, Cold Courage, Spy City, Ultra City Smiths, Anna, Anne Boleyn, Firebite, and La Fortuna. AMC+ recently launched in Canada and Australia, and is available in the U.S. through AMCPlus.com, the AMC+ app, and a number of digital and cable partners.

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Courtney B. Vance and Tosin Cole of "61st Street" on AMC

“Killing Eve” Ends Its Successful Run

“Killing Eve” Article!

KILLING EVE Season: 4 poster - Sandra Oh as Eve, Jodie Comer as Villanelle - Killing Eve _ Season 4, Key Art - Photo Credit: Claire Rothstein/BBCA

“Killing Eve” Season 4 premieres this week on AMC/AMC+ and BBC America by Suzanne 2/28/22

On February 10, I watched the TCA (Television Critics Assocation) panel for “Killing Eve,” which is beginning its 4th season. I was not able to ask a question, but I enjoyed watching the panel (and all of the AMC panels that same day). I don’t watch the show regularly, but I do plan to go back and finish watching it one of these days. There are just too many good shows to watch.

This is one worth watching, as I’m sure everyone knows by now. It’s one of the few shows that not only has critics raving but fans watching. This is its last season, unfortunately. It will be missed by its many fans. I’m sure the actors and writers will go on to many other great projects.

The panel included actors Sandra Oh (Eve), Jodie Comer (Villanelle) and Fiona Shaw (Carolyn); and executive producers Sally Woodward Gentle and Laura Neal (Oh is also executive producer). Many journalists were there to ask questions. It was great to listen in.

"Killing Eve" Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer, Sally Woodward Gentle and Laura Neal

You can read about the panel here on my friend Jamie’s site.

MORE INFO:

Trailer

Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri and Jodie Comer as Villanelle; photo from bbc.comFOURTH AND FINAL SEASON OF EXPLOSIVE AND CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED DRAMA, KILLING EVE, RETURNS SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 27 ON BBC AMERICA AND AMC+

January 01, 2022

Eight-Part Final Season To Also Air Mondays on AMC, Beginning February 28

AMC Networks today revealed the premiere date and first-look photos for the fourth and final season of the irresistible cultural phenomenon and award-winning drama series, Killing Eve. The must-watch conclusion to this epic journey will debut on Sunday, February 27 at 8:00pm ET/PT on BBC AMERICA, with the first two episodes also streaming that date on AMC+. In addition, episodes will premiere weekly on AMC beginning Monday, February 28 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.

After the emotional climax of Season Three, Eve (Golden Globe® winner Sandra Oh), Villanelle (Emmy® Award winner Jodie Comer) and Carolyn (BAFTA winner Fiona Shaw) are in very different places. Following Eve and Villanelle’s exchange on the bridge, Eve is on a revenge mission, while Villanelle has found a brand-new community in an attempt to prove she’s not a “monster.” Having killed Paul, Carolyn goes to extraordinary lengths to continue to chase down The Twelve and the person that ordered Kenny’s hit. This season follows our extraordinary women, each driven by passion, revenge and obsession, building towards a messy, nuanced and totally glorious series finale.

Laura Neal (Sex Education, Secret Diary of a Call Girl) continues the Killing Eve tradition of a new lead writer every season, following Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Emerald Fennell and Suzanne Heathcote. Neal is also an executive producer on season four.

Killing Eve stars Golden Globe®, SAG® and Critics’ Choice Award winner Sandra Oh, Emmy® and BAFTA winner Jodie Comer, Emmy® nominee and BAFTA winner Fiona Shaw and BAFTA nominee Kim Bodnia.

Executive producers for the upcoming season are Sally Woodward Gentle, Lee Morris, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Gina Mingacci, Damon Thomas, Laura Neal and Sandra Oh.

Killing Eve is produced by Sid Gentle Films Ltd. for BBC AMERICA. The series is financed and distributed by Endeavor Content.

Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri and Jodie Comer as Villanelle; photo fromAbout AMC Networks

AMC Networks is a global entertainment company known for its popular and critically acclaimed content. Its portfolio of brands includes AMC, BBC AMERICA (operated through a joint venture with BBC Studios), IFC, SundanceTV, WE tv, IFC Films, and a number of fast-growing streaming services, including the AMC+ premium streaming bundle, Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now and ALLBLK (formerly branded “UMC”). AMC Studios, the Company’s in-house studio, production and distribution operation, is behind award-winning owned series and franchises, including The Walking Dead, the highest-rated series in cable history. The Company also operates AMC Networks International, its international programming business, and 25/7 Media, its production services business.

About BBC AMERICA:

BBC AMERICA is a hub of innovative, culturally contagious programming including the Peabody Award-winning series Killing Eve starring Golden Globe® and SAG® Award-winner Sandra Oh and Emmy® Award-winner Jodie Comer. The network is the definitive television home and co-producer of the most iconic natural history series including Planet Earth II, Blue Planet II, Dynasties, Seven Worlds, One Planet and upcoming Meerkat Manor, Eden (w/t), Frozen Planet II and Planet Earth III. BBCA transforms every Saturday into Wonderstruck, a weekly 24-hour destination for wildlife and wonder. A joint venture between AMC Networks and BBC Studios (the commercial arm of the BBC), BBCA’s influential shows such as Doctor Who, Orphan Black, and Luther, have attracted critical acclaim and earned Emmy® Awards, Golden Globes®, Peabody Awards, Critics’ Choice Awards, NAACP Image Awards, TCA Awards and more. BBCA is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile. Find out more by visiting press.amcnetworks.com. BBCA on social: YouTubeTwitterInstagramFacebookTumblr

About AMC

AMC is home to some of the most popular and acclaimed programs on television. AMC was the first basic cable network to ever win the Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series with Mad Men in 2008, which then went on to win the coveted award four years in a row, before Breaking Bad won it in 2013 and 2014. The network’s series The Walking Dead is the highest-rated series in cable history. AMC’s current original drama series are Better Call Saul, Fear the Walking Dead, Kevin Can F Himself, NOS4A2, Quiz, Soulmates, The Walking Dead, The Walking Dead: World Beyond and the forthcoming series 61st Street and Pantheon. AMC also explores authentic worlds and discussion with original shows like Talking Dead, AMC Visionaries and Ride with Norman Reedus. AMC is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc. and its sister networks include IFC, SundanceTV, BBC America and WE tv. AMC is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile.

About AMC+

AMC+ is the company’s new premium streaming bundle featuring an extensive lineup of popular and critically acclaimed original programming from AMC, BBC America, IFC, and SundanceTV and full access to targeted streaming services Shudder, Sundance Now and IFC Films Unlimited, which feature content such as A Discovery of Witches, Creepshow, Riviera and Boyhood. The service features a continually refreshed library of commercial-free content, including fan favorites Mad Men, Halt & Catch Fire, Turn: Washington’s Spies, Hell on Wheels, NOS4A2, Rectify, Orphan Black, Portlandia, and series from The Walking Dead Universe, among many others. The service also offers a growing slate of original and exclusive series including Ragdoll, Kin, Gangs of London, The North Water, The Beast Must Die, Too Close, The Salisbury Poisonings, Spy City, Ultra City Smiths, Anna, and Firebite. AMC+ recently launched in Canada and Australia, and is available in the U.S. through AMCPlus.com, the AMC+ app, and a number of digital and cable partners.

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KILLING EVE Season: 3 - Jodie Comer as Villanelle, Kim Bodnia as Konstantin Vasiliev, Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri, Fiona Shaw as Carolyn Martens - Killing Eve _ Season 3, Gallery - Photo Credit: Paola Kudacki/BBC America
Jodie Comer as Villanelle, Kim Bodnia as Konstantin Vasiliev, Sandra Oh as Eve Polastri, Fiona Shaw as Carolyn Martens – Killing Eve _ Season 3, Gallery – Photo Credit: Paola Kudacki/BBC America

Interview with Yael Stone, Rob Collins and Shantae Barnes-Cowan

TV Interview!

Firebite poster

Interview with Yael Stone, Rob Collins and Shantae Barnes-Cowan of “Firebite” on AMC+ by Thane 12/9/21

This was my second interview for TVMEG.COM and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There was a small panel of press asking questions; two of them are mine (they have my name on them).

Question: Can you start by talking about what it was that first attracted you to the show, why you wanted to do it?

Rob: I can take that first. Warwick Thorton, I’d always wanted to work with him. I got a small taste of it on an Australian series called Mystery Road, the second series. He’s kind of just one of our go-to amazing directors. So, there was that and vampire killer. So, those two things combined, I just had to do this project.

Shantae: I auditioned at the start of the year on another project, and I met with Warwick. That was my first time meeting him, and he sort of gave me a little [bit] inside of it, and it sounded really cool, so I was up for it. And I heard it was gonna be really big. [laughs] So, yeah, I got really excited. I still can’t believe I won the role of Shanika, because I heard hundreds auditioned for it, but I’m happy I did, because it turned out really fun and deadly. [laughs] So, yeah, and I’m happy.

Question: All right. What about you, Yael?

Yael: I guess I should say that we’re so lucky that Shantae won the role as well, because she’s incredible in the show. Also, Warwick [was] definitely a massive kind of draw card for this project. And the scripts that I was sent were just so fascinating. I just felt like we have not done this before. We’ve not addressed Indigenous Australian history and a kind of violent colonial Australian history in this way before, using a vampire metaphor before, and I think it’s extraordinarily creative. It’s a really clever way in telling that story, and it’s got heaps of joy and laughs and fun, and then, at it’s heart, it’s got this incredibly powerful and incredibly serious metaphor as well.

Question: So, the question is, since, just like you mentioned, that was rather ambitious and probably the first of its kind in it’s take… [of] colonial exploitation and native history and racism, and combining it with elements of fantasy, like vampires and monster hunters. So, I wanted to know, what are your thoughts on it?

Rob: Speaking of fantasy, I mean, growing up in Australia, you are told a particular version of our colonial past, and that was certainly true for me. And like anything, it’s only as an adult, that you get time to sort of reflect on things, and as an indigenous man in Australia, what that kind of really means. So, I’d have to say, for me, in particular, that sort of revelation came through sort of in my mid 20s, and now, being a 40-year-old man with kids of my own who are indigenous, I think it’s important to give them a true sense of their place in this country. And I think at the heart of it as well, that’s what Warwick, I think, is trying to tackle in this series. So, for me, it was vitally important. I mean, I made the quip earlier that it was working with Warwick, and it was vampire hunting and all that kind of stuff that drew me to the role, but I think this idea of rewriting history kind of, in a sense, I found really kind of cool, because when you talk about fantasy, there are a few fantasies that we as everyday Australians accept as fact. And in fact, it’s such a powder keg here in Australia that I think this series is really going to agitate in a good way, and like the best series do, get you to think about, “Well, what is your accepted version of this country and your place in it and your family’s place in it and your forebearer’s place in it?” I think it’s a really timely discussion to have, and as genre does in its best way, it’s kind of subversive in that way, because it’s killing and it’s vampires; it’s action, and it’s fun. It’s laughs; it’s explosions and amazing sets, but then we’re able to sort of snake that that key message in amidst all the chaos.

Shantae: Yeah. Sort of what Rob was saying, the history of our culture and our land, you know, getting invaded, and from the white men, I think it’s important to tell, because as blackfellows, we’re strong about that. It’s our past; it’s our history, and it’s our culture, and we, as a culture, are proud. To tell it and show it to the world, I think is pretty cool, to show in this way, as well as the vampires. For me, it’s like the vampires feeding on blackfellow blood is sort of like, that is invasion for our culture. That’s how I see it, and it’s just cool to tell in that way. I think the world is gonna love it and our culture and our story.

Yael: I don’t know if I could answer the question any better than that. So, maybe I’ll take a different angle and say, it’s also fascinating; think about it, landing in an American audience first, and then across the world, potentially. I lived in the States for seven years, and I always felt there was this strange absence of a discussion in the kind of mainstream media about the Indigenous stories of the states. And I wonder, Rob said, maybe it’ll be a bit of a “powder keg for Australia moment;” maybe it sparks discussions elsewhere as as well, because these fantastical histories exist everywhere, and the more we face them, the more we can can address some of the healing that needs to happen. So yeah, maybe we’re putting a little match to the powder keg.

Thane: Thane here from TVMEG.com. Question to everyone: What training did you have for the fight scenes?

Rob: Training for the fight scenes? Well, actually the first week, Shantae, wasn’t it? We got in –

Shantae: Yeah.

Rob: They made us do awful things like push ups and sit ups and jumping around. We had an intense week of personal training in rehearsals, yeah.

Shantae: Yeah, we had like the personal training first and then went straight to rehearsals like reading. Yeah, it was crazy.

Rob: We had a really crack team of stunt people, wonderful people, but super across what we needed to do, and we were in the lucky position of getting in really early when we had a fight sequence coming up. So, in the early days, at least, we had lots of preparation to be able to knock those things down. So, it was a sort of coordinated approach of getting generally fit and working through choreography for the big fight sequences.

Question: Can you maybe talk about just overall having worked on this project, is there anything that you learned about yourself, either as a person, or an actor, just in general, something that you can think of that you didn’t know, maybe, before you started?

Rob: Oh, good question.

Yael: When when you do sign on for a project, sometimes you don’t know what you’re in for, because the story has sort of yet to fully unfold in terms of scripts. And in a way, coming back to Thane’s question, that physical element of embodying things and embodying kind of like those violent situations, it can be quite confronting. I’ve never done a lot of that kind of stuff before, so embodying some of that more physical element was a bit of a surprise for me, and a surprise in terms of that you don’t know what you’re signing on for. Then, in the actual moment, when you find yourself in all kinds of wild situations – like we were down in this crazy opal mine, these actual opal mines, and you catch yourself, and you think, “Oh, my Lord, I would never do this in my real life,” but suddenly, you’re there, and getting the shot is the most important thing, and you wouldn’t be anywhere else but down at the bottom of that opal mine.

Rob: Yeah, just building on that idea of uncertainty that Yael said, I think that’s probably the biggest thing as an actor and a person I’ve learned through this experience. We moved at such a rapid pace, and I don’t think I’ve ever been this busy in my life. I’ve spent most days on set. So, being able to sort of trust in what preparation you’ve done, trust in other people’s vision, [and] hand over a bit of the control to these wonderful creatives was a big learning curve, for me. I’m someone who’s really cerebral. I mean, I like to think about things a lot when it comes to performance and character. I wasn’t afforded that kind of opportunity on this, in a good way. So, embracing the chaos and accepting that the work is there and relinquishing some of that control to these fabulous creatives was a big learning curve for me, and one that I’d love to take into every project, because while it was terrifying, it was also very freeing and very liberating.

Shantae: For me, I feel like every day was learning, because I just haven’t had as much experience. It was just so good being around Rob and Yael and all the other, you know, older, experienced actors and actresses –

Rob: [clears throat] Not that much older.

Question: I was going to say, you called them old there! [laughs]

Shantae: [laughs] More experienced, [and] to learn from them is really cool, and I’m still learning to this day, still gonna keep learning, but yeah, I haven’t had a job this long as well. So, it was challenging as well, being away from family and learning about being, not alone, but, you know, by yourself, learning as a teenager and just keeping in that positive mental state. [It] was learning for me, and yeah, just meeting everyone on set, and the big crew and cast. I feel like that was one of my best learning things, I guess. But yeah, I learned a lot on this job.

Yael: It’s worth saying as well that Shantae also graduated high school while she was doing this job.

Question: Yeah, that’s got to be hard.

Yael: It was no mean feat. It was amazing to watch her juggle everything and learning everything and doing all that independence work of living away from your family, plus school, plus this huge job. She did an incredible job.

Rob: Yeah, I second that. She had her homework in the makeup trailer most mornings. It was incredible.

Question: So, based on the initial concept or the initial sketch or outline, what attracted you most or impressed you more most about your characters?

Rob: I guess I’ll take that first. I’ve done mainly TV in Australia, and my characters are very straight, steady, contained; they have it together in some certain degree. Tyson was, I think I can say this, the most fun I’ve had with a character, because he’s anything but that. So, strangely, it feels like in terms of my film persona, it’s really different, but my children, especially my oldest girl, has seen some of the show, just rough scenes, and says it’s oddly how I am at home. So, Tyson, there are elements of him that are closer to how I am in my private life, not necessarily my public face. So, it kind of drew that out of me, which is a kind of a fun thing. And I think, looking at the character off the page, it’s that stuff that I connected to: he’s fun; he’s silly. He has a very silly relationship – well, silly and serious with Shanika, which reminded me a lot of my own relationship with my daughters here. So, yeah, he’s chaos, but he’s a lot of heart as well. So, it felt really familiar to me.

Shantae: I felt like, my character found herself more at the end of the story…I was still quite strong, and I was smart and tech savvy and all that, but I wasn’t really powerful. I feel I was more powerful in the end. I had to go through a journey to really find that in myself. But I love my character. I feel I’m just underrated. I don’t know; there’s just something about Shanika that not many people would expect from a teenager, and, obviously, Tyson taught her growing up how to fight vampires; that’s pretty cool. So, she uses that in the classroom against classmates. She actually fights a lot at the school. [laughs] So, yeah, she definitely has some skills in life, and she’s strong, and she’s smart. She is smart, I would say.

Yael: I think it’s taken me a while, but I can say it out loud, “I think I’m a character actor.” [laughs] And Ellie, for me, is a real kind of character role. It’s probably not there in those first three episodes, so it’s kind of hard to talk about, given you guys have seen so little of her journey, I guess, and I don’t want to give anything away. So, let me give a silly answer. She has an accent, and I like accents. So, that’s why.

Thane: Shantae, was that you on the motorcycle, or a stunt double? And if it was you, how did you prepare?

Shantae: No, that was my stunt double, Tess. She’s my perfect stunt double. She’s like, you know, same skin type, a little bit shorter. So, it looks exactly like me, but it wasn’t. What they did is they would put her on the motorbike, and then they’d quickly get me at the end, just getting off the motorbike. So, yeah, they cut it really well. I really wish I’d learned how to ride motorbikes, because it’s really cool.

Yael: I mean, it sounds like you’re pretty into stunts. We had an amazing team, and I’m just not gonna say that [my stunt double] did any of my stunts. I’m just gonna be like, “Yeah, I did all of that.” [laughs] Everything you see, it’s all me, but actually, Rob, you maybe did everything, didn’t you, like did pretty much everything yourself?

Rob: I did everything but anything that looked a bit “hurty.” So, Cory, my stunt double, did that and all the driving as well. There are over 2500 manholes in Coober Pedy, so they didn’t trust me to drive a car at speed, weaving through those poles. And I have to say, Cory did an amazing job there. In fact, this is a good point to shout out to our amazing stunt team, led by Nathan [Lawson], that were not only great people, really supportive, but the fight sequences in this show are something else. They’re certainly the best I’ve ever had the pleasure of pretending to be in.

Yael: They also played a lot of the vampires. They got dressed up a lot, and they got killed a lot.

Rob: Yeah.

Interview Transcribed by Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

MORE INFO:

Trailer

Scene from "Firebite"AMC STUDIOS GREENLIGHTS FIREBITE, A CO-PRODUCTION WITH SEE-SAW FILMS TO PREMIERE ON AMC+ LATER THIS YEAR

June 08, 2021

High-Octane Fantasy Follows Two Indigenous Australians on Quest to Battle Last Colony of Vampires in South Australia 

NEW YORK, NY, June 8, 2021 – AMC Studios today announced that it has greenlit a new original series called Firebite. A co-production with See-Saw Films, the series will be filmed in Australia this summer and is expected to appear on AMC+ later this year.

Firebite is a high-octane, highly original spin on the Vampire genre and fantasy series that follows two Indigenous Australian hunters, Tyson and Shanika, on their quest to battle the last colony of vampires in the middle of the South Australian desert.

Created, written and to be directed by Australia’s most celebrated Indigenous auteur voice, Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah, Sweet Country) together with Brendan Fletcher (Mad Bastards), the series is set in a remote desert mining town, a hive for the last vampire stronghold shipped from Britain to Australia in 1788 by the colonial superpower to eradicate the Indigenous populations.

Sheltering from the sun in the underground mines and tunnels that surround the town until the present day, the colony’s numbers and hunger is growing. War is coming. Tyson and Shanika stand vanguard to the war. But what hope does an expertly reckless man full of bravado and a 17-year-old orphan possibly have to defeat these vicious blood-thirsty parasites, when legions of warriors before them have failed?

Executive Producers for See-Saw Films are Rachel Gardner, Emile Sherman and Iain Canning, alongside Thornton and Fletcher. See-Saw’s Simon Gillis serves as Co-Executive Producer.

Paul Ranford (Stateless, True History of the Kelly Gang) will produce the series alongside Indigenous filmmaker Dena Curtis (Elements, Grace Beside Me), who is co-producing. The writing team include Kodie Bedford and newcomers Devi Telfer and Josh Sambono.

The season will be comprised of eight, one-hour episodes and will be filmed on the traditional Country of the Antakirinja Matu-Yankunytjatjara people of the Western Desert and Kaurna People of the Adelaide Plains in and around Adelaide, the regional town of Coober Pedy and at the Adelaide Studios in South Australia.

The deal was negotiated by Rebecca Hardman for See-Saw Films and Scott Stein for AMC. The series has received major funding from the South Australian Film Corporation. The production is providing employment opportunities for First Nations practitioners.

“This is an original and highly entertaining series we can’t wait to bring to AMC+, and one that expands our already fruitful creative partnership with See-Saw Films after very successful collaborations on the wildly original State of the Union and the rare gem that was Top of the Lake,” said Dan McDermott, president of original programming for AMC Networks and co-head of AMC Studios. “We are excited to tell this story authentically, in Australia with Indigenous storytellers, cast and crew and on Indigenous lands.”

Warwick Thornton and Brendan Fletcher said, “We are really proud of the worthy and important stories we’ve brought to the screen over the last twenty years. Now it’s time for some rock and roll.”

Rachel Gardner, See-Saw Films’ Head of Drama Australia and Executive Producer said, “It’s incredibly exciting to be bringing Warwick and Brendan’s unique vision to the screen with a high-octane explosive story that draws on the complex themes of colonisation and racial prejudice, driven by Indigenous storytellers.”

See-Saw’s Managing Directors, and Executive Producers Emile Sherman and Iain Canning said, “We are thrilled to be working with Warwick Thornton and Brendan Fletcher, who are such formidable storytellers, on this hugely original, action packed new show, headlined by so many wonderfully talented Indigenous voices. It’s fantastic to be collaborating once again with our friends at AMC who champion such original programming, and continually back great talent.”

Warwick Thornton is one of Australia’s most notable directors and Indigenous voices. Thornton (Samson and Deliah, Sweet Country) and Brendan Fletcher (Mad Bastards) are both known for their powerful and gritty feature films. Samson and Delilah won the Camera D’Or at Cannes and Sweet Country won the Special Jury Prize at Venice Film Festival as well as the Platform Prize at the Toronto Film Festival. Mad Bastards was nominated for the Special Jury Prize at Sundance Film Festival. Together Brendan and Warwick were commissioned by the Australian Government to co-direct the first ever International TV campaign to promote Aboriginal Tourism. The campaign was seen by over 30 million people worldwide. They collaborated again on the Award-Winning documentary We Don’t Need A Map, which opened the 2017 Sydney Film Festival. Firebite is their first television series as Creators – their goal was to create something they want to watch – fast paced, highly imagined and entertaining.

Warwick and Brendan are repped by UTA and by attorney Darren Tratter.

About See-Saw Films

See-Saw Films is a world leading film and television production house, founded in 2008 by Academy Award®, BAFTA and Emmy winning producers Iain Canning and Emile Sherman, with offices in London and Sydney.

See-Saw’s first television series was the multi-award winning first season of Jane Campion’s ‘Top of the Lake’. Campion returned with ‘Top of The Lake: China Girl’ starring Elisabeth Moss, Nicole Kidman and Gwendoline Christie which premiered at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for a Golden Globe.  ‘State of the Union’, written by Nick Hornby, directed by Stephen Frears and starring Rosamund Pike and Chris O’Dowd had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival 2019 and won three Emmy Awards. Recent projects include Samantha Strauss’ ‘The End’ for Foxtel, Sky Atlantic and Showtime, starring Harriet Walter and Frances O’Connor. Upcoming projects include ‘The North Water’ for BBC Two written and directed by Andrew Haigh, starring Colin Farrell, Jack O’Connell and Stephen Graham; ‘Slow Horses’ for Apple TV+, starring Gary Oldman; a second season of ‘State of the Union’ written by Nick Hornby, directed by Stephen Frears and starring Brendan Gleeson, Patricia Clarkson and Esco Jouléy; ‘The Essex Serpent’ for Apple TV+ to be directed by Clio Barnard, starring Claire Danes and Tom Hiddleston; and ‘Heartstopper’ for Netflix, to be directed by Euros Lyn.

See-Saw produced the six-time Academy Award® nominated Lion, starring Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara, as well as The King’s Speech, which was nominated for twelve and won four Academy Awards® in 2011 including Best Motion Picture. Recent projects include Widows directed by Steve McQueen and starring Viola Davis and Ammonite, written and directed by Francis Lee, starring Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan. Upcoming film projects include Operation Mincemeat, directed by John Madden and starring Colin Firth, Matthew Macfadyen and Kelly Macdonald; The Unknown Man starring Joel Edgerton and Sean Harris; and The Power Of The Dog, written and directed by Jane Campion, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst and Jesse Plemons;

About AMC Networks Inc. 

AMC Networks is a global entertainment company known for its popular and critically-acclaimed content. Its portfolio of brands includes AMC, BBC AMERICA (operated through a joint venture with BBC Studios), IFC, SundanceTV, WE tv, IFC Films, and a number of fast-growing streaming services, including the AMC+ premium streaming bundle, Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now and ALLBLK. AMC Studios, the Company’s in-house studio, production and distribution operation, is behind award-winning owned series and franchises, including The Walking Dead, the highest-rated series in cable history. The Company also operates AMC Networks International, its international programming business, and 25/7 Media, its production services business.

AMC+ ORIGINAL SERIES FIREBITE BEGINS PRODUCTION IN SOUTH AUSTRALIA WITH YAEL STONE, ROB COLLINS, CALLAN MULVEY & SHANTAE BARNES-COWAN IN LEADING ROLES

August 23, 2021

TONY KRAVITZ JOINS WARWICK THORNTON & BRENDAN FLETCHER AS DIRECTOR

AN AMC STUDIOS CO-PRODUCTION WITH SEE-SAW FILMS, FIREBITE DEBUTS ON AMC+ THIS WINTER

NEW YORK, NY – AUGUST 23, 2021 – AMC+ announced today the start of production on the Original Series Firebite in South Australia this week, with Yael Stone (Orange is the New Black), Rob Collins (Cleverman, Extraction) and Callan Mulvey (Avengers: End Game) in leading roles. The series will also introduce Indigenous Australian star Shantae Barnes-Cowan. A co-production between AMC Studios and  See-Saw Films, Firebite is a high-octane, highly original spin on the Vampire genre and fantasy series that follows two Indigenous Australian hunters, Tyson (Collins) and Shanika (Barnes-Cowan), on their quest to battle the last colony of vampires in the middle of the South Australian desert. The series is comprised of eight, one-hour episodes set to debut on AMC+ this winter.

Created and written by Australia’s most celebrated Indigenous auteur voice, Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah, Sweet Country), who also directs along with Brendan Fletcher (Mad Bastards) and Tony Krawitz (The Tall Man, Dead Europe)Firebite is set in a remote desert mining town, a hive for the last vampire stronghold shipped from Britain to Australia in 1788 by the colonial superpower to eradicate the Indigenous populations. Sheltering from the sun in the underground mines and tunnels that surround the town until the present day, the colony’s numbers and hunger is growing. War is coming. Tyson and Shanika stand vanguard to the war. But what hope does an expertly reckless man full of bravado and a 17-year-old orphan possibly have to defeat these vicious blood-thirsty parasites, when legions of warriors before them have failed?

Thornton and Fletcher said, “Our only rule was to find great people, no matter where they came from. We have actors who’ve worked on big Hollywood blockbusters, and others that are flying in from remote Aboriginal communities who light up the screen with natural presence. To us, they are all movie stars.”

Executive Producer Rachel Gardner said: “We love our cast. They bring these characters to life with authenticity, power and a solid dose of naughty. It feels like this is going to be something special.”

Kristin Jones, Executive Vice President, International Programming and Program Innovation, AMC Networks said: “We are committed to creating compelling programming with diverse voices and representation for our viewers, and Firebite delivers on this goal. We’re thrilled to bring this unique original series to life authentically with a stellar cast and crew on Indigenous lands with Indigenous storytelling.”

See-Saw’s Managing Directors and Executive Producers Emile Sherman and Iain Canning said: “As we start principal photography, we’re delighted to announce our exceptional cast and the addition of our friend Tony Krawitz to the directing team. Led by visionary director Warwick Thornton, we’re going to be in for an exciting ride”

Kristin Jones is overseeing the series for AMC Networks. Executive Producers for See-Saw Films are Emile Sherman and Iain Canning, alongside Rachel Gardner, Thornton and Fletcher. See-Saw’s Simon Gillis serves as co-executive producer, with Libby Sharpe as co-producer and Billy Bowring as associate producer. Paul Ranford (Stateless, True History of the Kelly Gang) will produce the series alongside Indigenous filmmaker Dena Curtis (Elements, Grace Beside Me), who is co-producing. The writing team include Kodie Bedford and newcomers Devi Telfer and Josh Sambono.

Yael Stone is represented by Lisa Mann and Elly Speer, Lisa Mann Creative Management (Australia) and, in the US, by Jason Gutman, The Gersh Agency, and Andy Corren, Andy Corren Management. Rob Collins and Callan Mulvey are represented by Sarah Nathan, Shanahan Management (Australia). Rob Collins’ US representative is Matt Shaffer, Innovative Artists. Callan Mulvey’s US representatives are Kim Hodgert, Anonymous Content, and Jim Dempsey, Paradigm. Shantae Barnes-Cowan is represented by Peter Gunn and Ali Roberts, Actors Management International.

The series has received major funding from the South Australian Film Corporation. The production is providing employment opportunities for First Nations practitioners.

AMC+ RELEASES FIRST-LOOK IMAGES FROM NEW ORIGINAL VAMPIRE FANTASY SERIES FIREBITE, PREMIERING DECEMBER 16

November 04, 2021

An AMC Studios Original Production with See-Saw Films, the Eight-Episode Series Stars Yael Stone, Rob Collins, Callan Mulvey and Shantae Barnes-Cowan


NEW YORK – November 4, 2021 – AMC+ released today first-look images from its highly original vampire fantasy series Firebite, which is set to premiere Thursday, December 16 on the premium streaming bundle. The eight-episode series, rolling out with new episodes every Thursday, stars Yael Stone (Orange is the New Black), Rob Collins (Cleverman, Extraction), Callan Mulvey (Avengers: End Game) and Indigenous Australian star Shantae Barnes-Cowan. An AMC Studios original production with See-Saw Films, Firebite takes a new spin on the vampire genre, following two Indigenous Australian hunters, Tyson (Collins) and Shanika (Barnes-Cowan), on their quest to battle the last colony of vampires in the middle of the South Australian desert.

Created, directed and written by Australia’s most celebrated Indigenous auteur voice, Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah, Sweet Country) alongside Brendan Fletcher (Mad Bastards), with Tony Krawitz (The Tall Man, Dead Europe) joining as director, Firebite is set in a remote desert mining town, a hive for the last vampire stronghold shipped from Britain to Australia in 1788 by the colonial superpower to eradicate the Indigenous populations. Sheltering from the sun in the underground mines and tunnels that surround the town until the present day, the colony’s numbers and hunger is growing. War is coming. Tyson and Shanika stand vanguard to the war. But what hope does an expertly reckless man full of bravado and a 17-year-old orphan possibly have to defeat these vicious blood-thirsty parasites, when legions of warriors before them have failed?

Kristin Jones is overseeing the series for AMC Networks. Executive producers for See-Saw Films are Emile Sherman and Iain Canning, alongside Rachel Gardner, Thornton and Fletcher. See-Saw’s Simon Gillis and Kodie Bedford serve as co-executive producers with Kodie Bedford as script producer, Libby Sharpe as co-producer and Billy Bowring as associate producer. Paul Ranford (Stateless, True History of the Kelly Gang) produces the series alongside Indigenous filmmaker Dena Curtis (Elements, Grace Beside Me), who is co-producing.

AMC Studios Content Distribution is managing worldwide sales.

AMC+ RELEASES TRAILER AND KEY ART FOR FIREBITE

December 09, 2021

AMC+ released today the trailer and key art for the original vampire fantasy series Firebite, premiering Thursday, December 16 on the premium streaming bundle with new episodes to follow every Thursday. The eight-episode series takes a new spin on the vampire genre, following two Indigenous Australian hunters, Tyson (Rob Collins, Cleverman, Extraction) and Shanika (Indigenous Australian star Shantae Barnes-Cowan), on their quest to battle the last colony of vampires in the middle of the South Australian desert. The series also stars Yael Stone (Orange is the New Black) and Callan Mulvey (Avengers: End Game), amongst others.

Created, directed and written by Australia’s most celebrated Indigenous auteur voice, Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah, Sweet Country) alongside Brendan Fletcher (Mad Bastards), with Tony Krawitz (The Tall Man, Dead Europe) joining as director, Firebite is an AMC Studios original production with See-Saw Films.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Press panel for "Firebite"

Interview with Alexa Mansour, Nicolas Cantu, Hal Cumpston and Julia Ormond

TV Interview!

Alexa Mansour, Nicolas Cantu, Hal Cumpston and Julia Ormond

Interview with Alexa Mansour, Nicolas Cantu, Hal Cumpston and Julia Ormond of “The Walking Dead: World Beyong” on AMC by Thane 12/3/21

This was my first interview for the site. We had some technical problems, but it worked out well in the end. It was great to listen to the actors talk about the final episode of the show.

Question:   Congratulations on a great season of the show. Now, the show was, as far as I know, entirely filmed in Richmond, Virginia, or if not, mostly filmed there. I was wondering if each of you could give me a recommendation for a great restaurant or spot to do or to go to the next time I’m in Richmond?

Alexa:  The Jefferson Hotel. Go to the Jefferson hotel; get a dirty martini. It’s great.

Hal:  Yeah, the Jefferson hotel is awesome. They’ve got an alligator out at the front, because apparently they used to have alligators walking around the hotel there in the 30s or something. What else is there? Where did we all go for that dinner by the river? That was awesome.

Alexa:  What was it called?

Nick:   The Lilly Pad? I’m pretty sure it’s the Lilly Pad.

Alexa:  It was the Lilly Pad. It was the Lilly Pad.

Hal:  The Lilly Pad. Hell yeah.

Nick:   My shouts out for Richmond are this hot chicken sandwich place called Hot Chick.

Hal:  Yeah, I was about to say “Hot Chick.”

Nick:   Hot Chick sandwich place, and I would go to the skate park a lot called Treasure Island. It’s a DIY; that place is sick. Those are my two shout outs for the city of Richmond. And the river is just beautiful, like just finding little stuff to do along the river. That’s great, too.

Question:   Did ever of you go to GWARbar ever, or that was off limits?

Nick:   What’s GWARbar?

Hal:  I walked past it once.

Question:   The heavy metal band GWAR has a bar/restaurant in Richmond.

Nick:   Wait, what? Do they? My friends just went to a GWAR show. I didn’t know they had a bar in Richmond.

Hal:  [unitelligible] skating now.

Nick:   I didn’t know they had a bar. Man, I missed that. Thank you.

Hal:  You could have taken photos at it and pretended you were cool.

Question:   Congratulations on this amazing season and wrapping up the show. It’s just been fantastic. My question to you, and this is open to anyone, looking back, your character started the series with a very distinct view of how the world worked, and most importantly, how it should work and what those rules should be and how you should function. I’m wondering how your character’s vision changed by the end of the series. Who wants to go?

Nick:   I’ll go. I’ll go. I think Elton has changed was very much from kind of spectating to being a part of everything now, but, also, he saw the gray area of the world more in season two. Season one you see him just kind of being this, I guess, more of a pacifist, but in season two as he accepts the world for what it is, he starts participating in the more gray aspects of apocalypse life.

Hal:  Yeah, that was a real same this season…I also thought growing up was it a theme of the show.

Alexa:  Yeah, I agree with that. I think growing up for sure. I’m just realizing what’s important and what’s worth actually stressing yourself out over, you know, like, I feel like in the first season, at least for Hope, she was really very bitter towards everybody. She just was so ready to destroy anybody that she thought was bad. Second season, she became a little bit more methodical about the way that she approached things, like realizing like sometimes you do have to kind of – not sleep with the enemy, but sleep with the enemy, to get what you want and to get ahead. Nick’s looking at me like –

Nick:   What do you mean by that? Sleep with the enemy?

Alexa:  Like the CRM was the enemy, and she went undercover in that area, which I feel like first season she would have been like, “Screw this; I’m not doing this.”

Nick:   True.

Hal:  I’ve never slept with anyone let alone the enemy.

Alexa:  I’ve never slept with anyone either.

Julia:  I’ve [unintelligible] slept with people, but, I don’t know, I sort of feel with Elizabeth, the pragmatism of being committed to an agenda that was really tough and seemed really clear just became much more complicated for her and clearly hadn’t worked [unintelligible] defeated by that.

Question:   This is what it’s for Alexa, how was it manag[ing] to get the F bomb in on the last episode?

Alexa:  I didn’t even know I had an F bomb in the last episode.

Hal:  Yeah, what the hell? You fully got a fuck in there.

Question:   No, that was the previous episode, sorry.

Alexa:  I didn’t know that that was as big deal. I didn’t know that was like an actual thing that you couldn’t do. I figured because it’s television and whatnot, but people actually think it’s a really big deal, and I say that word all the time.

Hal:  Alexa is awesome like that. She’s such a swear bear.

Alexa:  [laughs]

Hal:   She doesn’t sleep with anyone, but she sure as hell swears a lot.

Alexa:  Yeah. No, I’m actually pretty excited that I got that F bomb in there, because Hal didn’t get it.

Hal:  Yeah, I didn’t even get as much as like a “crap” or a “shit.”

Alexa:  Because Silas doesn’t talk. You have to talk more.

Hal:  It is so weird with the ruling. I think, because there’s so much violence, they’re not really allowed to like swear and have violence, but it’s like is killing someone not a little bit more offensive than swearing?

Alexa:  Not if what you’re killing was a rotting piece of flesh.

Nick:   We kill people in this show.

Hal:  There’re people being killed.

Nick:   Yeah. We don’t shy away from human death.

Hal:  I’ve killed nearly as many people as I’ve killed zombies.

Alexa:  You’ve killed people on the show?

Nick:   People die in the show.

Hal:  I kill two people, I think. Yeah, I do…My two father figures.

Nick:   That’s a shame.

Hal:  That is a shame.

Thane:  Nicholas, tell us how they did the special effects and such at the end, where you lost part of your arm.

Nick:   So, for that last shot, we were kind of coming over the hill in Portland, and they gave me like a blue like sleeve to put my arm through. They just kind of said, “Don’t move it.” So, I just kind of stood with my arm just still. Then, I guess they blue screened it out. But then for one scene where I had my arm chopped off and I’m sitting in that hospital bed, my arm is just a pool noodle. I always thought that was funny that they just put a pool noodle and wrapped and bandaged, like, “That’s his arm,” and my actual arm was under some covers. So, that’s how they achieved the effect of me not having an arm.

Hal:  They toyed with the idea of actually doing that.

Nick:   They were thinking about actually chopping it off. It was not them thing; it was a me thing for the character, where I wanted to go all the way. But my doctor said “no.” So, we had to do blue screen and pool noodles.

Alexa Mansour, Nicolas Cantu, Hal Cumpston and Julia Ormond

Hal:  His therapist said “yes.”

Nick:   Therapist said “yes;” Doctor said “no.”

Alexa:  Did you tell the doctor how much they were gonna pay you for the arm?

Nick:   Ah, it’s a weird thing with me and my doctor. So, I feel like they would raise my prices if I did something like that. So, I just kept it chill.

Hal:  Nick’s sleeping with his doctor.

Nick:   I kept it chill. So, it was able to be figured out basically with special effects and movie magic

Thane:  When you read in your script that you were bitten and then cured, were you disappointed that you didn’t get to be a walker and/or die on screen?

Nick:   A little bit, actually, because ever since I signed on to The Walking Dead thing, I was like, “Okay, the whole experience would be, get in the show, kill some things, and then get killed,” because that’s like the cycle of The Walking Dead universe. So, I was wanting to be a part of it, but, hey, maybe my day will come someday. I got my arm chopped off. That’s part of it. I’m getting like drip fed little apocalyptic checkmarks on a bucket list. So, maybe one day I’ll get to die. It’s a start, but you know, zombies. [laughs]

Question:   Pollyanna came from the main show, The Walking Dead, as Jadis, but now she’s on World Beyond. She’s a completely different character. So, what was it like working with her? Because compared to the main show and this one, she’s a force to be reckoned with.

Alexa:  I didn’t know. I mean, I knew she was on the original one; I didn’t know that she was playing a completely different character. I thought that it was like, maybe just a different side of her of the character. Like maybe the character went through some shit and came out. You know, when you go through a hard time [and] when you come out you’re like a completely different person, but that’s kind of interesting to know. She’s awesome to work with. She’s like, insanely talented. So, regardless of like, different character or not, she was great to work with.

Hal:  Yeah, Pollyanna. Very fun to work with. Yeah.

Alexa:  And it was sick, knowing that someone from the original show was crossing over. Because I was like, “Oh, there’s there’s hope.” Not no pun intended.

Hal:  I like getting to work with my British brothers and sisters. They’re a little bit less American, so it’s fun.

Question:   Julia, the moment at the end of the series finale, it was just so beautiful, and watching Elizabeth, the realization come across Elizabeth, as she kind of gets a sense of what’s going on. I’m curious, do you think she knew that Huck was torn as much as she was between this life she’d been living undercover and her duty to the CRM?

Julia:  I have to confess, I haven’t actually seen how they ended up cutting it together, but I do feel the Elizabeth buried any fears that she had about Jennifer and her relationship. And I know that is something that kind of is in pretty much every scene that they have together, is this question of how much Elizabeth cares or connects and the things that Jennifer’s gone through. But I don’t think Elizabeth, by the time that she’s arrested and put into [a cell], I don’t think she has completely been able to – I think she’s emotionally distracted. I don’t think she’s been completely able to quite admit the degree to which she’s made some – she’s made some legitimate sort of mistakes, as a leader, in terms of the vulnerability. So, it’s understandable to me that Jadis does comes at her with the things that she does, and I think Elizabeth just hasn’t really realized how much of a distraction it’s been, the emotional stuff. So, I think it’s gut wrenching for her that Jennifer’s not connecting with her as a mom as a result of choices that Elizabeth has made and found family in other people to be worthy of being loyal to, and I think that destroys her.

Hal:  Things are so bleak for Elizabeth at the end there.

Alexa:  I mean, she kind of deserves it, no offense.

Hal:  Everyone is throwing hate.

Alexa:  She destroyed our home.

Julia:  Well, she does have to make some tough decisions, but yeah, I guess so.

Question:   For all of you, did any of you get to take home any kind of either weapons, or items from the set?

Hal:  Hell yeah, they sorted us out.

Alexa:  Yeah.

Hal:  I’ve got my wrench. I’m moving to a new house and I’m going to get it in a glass box.

Alexa:  I took my S-pole

Nick:   I don’t know if you can see it. I’m gonna get the pocket fisherman. I’m going to bring that out.

Hal:  Gotta get the pocket fisherman Nick. Do your mother fucking thing.

Alexa:  I have the S-pole.

Question:   Oh, it’s somewhere in the other room?

Alexa:  Yeah, mine’s in the other [room].

Nick:   The pocket fisherman; rock it up with the pocket fisherman. It’s got all the action. It’s just sitting here. I got to keep the suit. I got to keep this. They gave me like the little archeology bag; they gave me the whole thing.

Hal:  Nick uses that fisherman as like a pickup line.

Nick:   Yeah, when I’m bored.

Hal:  Nick, demonstrate. What do you do? Go on; demonstrate.

Nick:   I say, “Hey, baby. I’m trying to do this interview. So let’s move on.”

Hal:  He always says baby.

Nick:   Always with the baby.

Question:   How about you Julia?

Julia:  [laughs] No, I got a great mug as a takeaway that had a Walking Dead design on it from one of the crew members that was super fun, but no. I don’t want to take home weapons. I take home my memories.

Hal:  Did Elizabeth really have weapons? I feel like other people did her dirty work sort of.

Julia:  Excuse me! No, she had like the stiletto pen thing.

Hal:  Oh, true. I remember that from the show.

Julia:  But I mean, also, kind of like the way that we had set about it in terms of Elizabeth’s stuff is that she could kind of…turn anything into a weapon instead of sort of – yeah, she had a stiletto that was sort of kept [in] the jacket somewhere, but the idea is that she could take any weapon and use it sort of as somebody who’s got a military background and training to do that stuff, but you don’t really get to see that in the series.

Hal:  There wasn’t enough time for anything.

Thane:  [Hal], all of the characters went through so much; yours seemed to go through the most changes all throughout the series. Which part did you enjoy the most, and, in your opinion, does Silas stay loyal to his friends, or does he [go over to] the dark side or the CRM?

Hal:  Well, yeah, he does really change, because at the start he’s scared to say anything or look anyone in the eye. Then, at the end of it, he’s almost like a pretty normal, normal-ish person, which maybe just is my acting not making sense that I came back and decided it was a new character, or it’s really good emotional range, or like range to go from that, from the start to the end, but who knows? That’s for the people to decide as to whether he’s loyal or going to the CRM. Again, I’d like to think that he thinks for himself, and that’s an option for him that he doesn’t know. Maybe he is half seeing what’s going on with the CRM and checking it out and then seeing if he really wants to take it down. But I do get the sense that now that these little young rebel rebel kids have got a taste for taking down the establishment, I feel like that’s gonna happen again. They’re not able to sit still and just deal with living in the post apocalyptic world. They have to be like fighting something constantly. They’re all going to Portland and stuff. I mean, they could just chill out. That’s what I like to do, just chilll.

Thane:  Were you a fan of The Walking Dead before you auditioned for the show?

Hal:  I’d never seen any of it…I hadn’t seen it before, but, obviously, because I hadn’t lived under a rock, I knew what The Walking Dead was. It’s like a humongous thing, but then I got to watch, and it was actually pleasant. I was sort of surprised. I thought it would be this particular thing, but I watched the first two seasons as I was getting the callbacks. You get to another point, they’re like, “Oh, I think they’re gonna make an offer, blah blah blah,” and it was my first American audition. So, it was all very surreal for me. Then I’m able to watch the show, and I’m like, “I actually like this show. This is crazy. It’s a pretty cool [show].” The first season, it’s almost a bit like it has an independent movie feel, but with a budget, and the acting is pretty awesome and fresh and interesting.

Alexa:  Yeah, I only watched the first couple seasons. I think I stopped at season three, but I really liked it. I just tend to fall out with TV shows and just forget to keep watching them, and I lose my spot.

Nick:   Yeah, I watched the first two seasons as well, I think, when they put them on Netflix, and then I tapped out, because I was like ten or something, and it was just a lot of blood and guts. But my older brother kept watching it, and it was always in the household. Then, he was like, “Hey, come check this out,” when Glenn died, and he just showed me his brains getting splattered on TV. I was like, “Oh, great, dude. Awesome.” So, it was always in my house, but I only kept up with seasons one and two.

Question:   All of you, for the final episode, were there any scenes that were very hard to pull off when it came to either the dialogue or during the stunts?

Alexa:  Yeah, there was, I think it was in season two, either episode one or two, but when Hope has a fight with Candice, before she gets pushed against the wall and eaten alive or whatever, that scene took all day, because we had to keep switching between me and the stunt double. So, that was probably one of the longest, hardest scenes that I had to do. Yeah, I’m very happy that I made it through it in one piece.

Nick:   Yeah, by the end of season two, we were there, I think, from January to June, so once it got it started getting closer to summer, the days were getting hotter, and the season was ending, so we had to do all of our stunts. We shot every season in Richmond; it was really nice, but once we got to the summer, it got hotter, and [there were] just bigger set pieces. There was the whole battle at the the community village where the CRM comes in and Elton’s about to get executed, that whole like battle piece where the building blows up and everything, that was multiple days. That was a lot of prep, but it turned out awesome. That was probably the hardest.

Hal:  They blew up the barn. That was nuts.

Nick:   That was crazy. Did you see that?

Hal:  Remember there was a fire; the whole fire department was just sitting there having to watch it burn.

Nick:   Yeah, because it was a controlled burn or something. They’re just sitting on the sidelines.

Hal:  Yeah, the fire people couldn’t handle it.

Nick:   Yeah, but it was sick.

Hal:  It was like Pavlov’s dogs.

Question:   How about you Julia?

Julia:  I think, honestly, as an actor, the the first episode scene, just from a technical point of view, I had so much. [laughs] I had this six page speech for Elizabeth. I don’t think [unintelligible] all of it, but I was absolutely terrified, because I think the way that it shot, it’s kind of like you don’t have – I think when you see it come together, it looks as if it could have been chopped up. [laughs] It was just kind of –

Alexa:  You killed it, though.

Julia:  Oh, my God. Thanks, I appreciate that. Yeah, it was just really challenging, because it was also, how do I make this interesting instead of kind of having people go, “Oh, my God, when is she going to shut up?” But yeah, I think just that I sort of ended up with something that was a bit kind of technical, but that was probably my most challenging…I think, as an actor, the scenes that I love are the scenes where you don’t have any tech, so being given something [laughs], it was sort of like, “Oh, no!”

Hal:  What was the question?…Sorry, my phone ran out of charge; now I’m on my computer.

Question:   I was asking, were there any scenes of stunt work or dialogue that was very challenging during this whole season?

Hal:  I don’t know; everyone else has answered. I don’t know, the scenes where I don’t – like a lot of the time, Silas doesn’t have many lines, and that’s a little bit like odd sometimes, like sort of the opposite. You know what I mean? I wouldn’t mind a few extra lines, so I don’t have to do all this, like, “I’m not saying anything, but I’m acting.” Sometimes it’s fun just to be able to go to set and say some shit. We’re there for so long, like six months. So, honestly, I feel like the challenging part probably was there was so much time in between, because all the storylines were so caught up. So, actually, we weren’t really  working that much. Well, I wasn’t. I love being on set. I love being on set.

Julia:  I think one of the really hard things was actually doing it under COVID circumstances, because when you’re rehearsing, you’ve got all this stuff around your face. You can’t really kind of see the reactions of people; you’re not interacting. I felt like I [wasn’t] able to interact with crew in the same way. So, there’s this kind of block from having this human experience. That is the sort of joy of of putting together a story and a collaborative process. The COVID restrictions has had a huge impact, I think, on the experience, just in general, of being an actor.

Hal:  Yeah, I’m so glad hopefully it’s [over]. I mean, I don’t even know. Is it coming to an end? But, yeah, it gets a bit depressing a little bit when everyone’s wearing masks. Also, yeah, taking direction from a director, and you can’t really see what their emotions are or how they’re feeling, because they’re wearing a big mask and a face shield.

Interview Transcribed by Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

MORE INFO:

Scene from the end of the last episodeThe Walking Dead: World Beyond – Series finale airs December 5th at 10pm ET/9c on AMC and will be available one week early on AMC+

Season two of The Walking Dead: World Beyond concludes the epic story of Iris (Aliyah Royale), Hope (Alexa Mansour), Elton (Nicolas Cantu), and Silas (Hal Cumpston) — four friends who journeyed across the country on a mission that transformed everything they knew about themselves and the world.  As they face off against the mysterious Civic Republic Military and fight for control of their own destiny, goals will shift, bonds will form and crumble, and innocence will be both lost and found.

The Walking Dead: World Beyond is executive produced by co-creator Scott M. Gimple, co-creator and showrunner Matt Negrete, Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert and Brian Bockrath, and is produced and distributed by AMC Studios. In addition to Royale, Mansour, Cantu and Cumpston, the series stars Nico Tortorella, Annet Mahendru, Julia Ormond, Joe Holt, Jelani Alladin, Natalie Gold and Ted Sutherland.

Episode 210: The Last Light

The remaining members of the group fight back enemies, both living and dead, on their quest to save the future.

Written by: Matthew Negrete, Maya Goldsmith, Carson Moore

Directed by: Loren Yaconelli

SciFiVision article and interview with the same actors

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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"The Walking Dead: World Beyond" Season 2 poster

Interview with Julia Ormond, Alexa Mansour and Annet Mahendru

TV Interview!

Julia Ormond (Elizabeth), Alexa Mansour (Hope) and Annet Mahendru (Huck) of "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMC

Interview with Julia Ormond (Elizabeth), Alexa Mansour (Hope) and Annet Mahendru (Huck) of “The Walking Dead: World Beyond” on AMC by Suzanne 9/23/21

I love this show, so it was great to chat with some of the stars this week on press panels. These women were so nice and had thoughtful answers to all of the questions. I can’t wait to see the rest of season 2. I’m just sorry that it’s ending after that.  Note that the questions that don’t have my name are from other journalists, not me.  Don’t miss the season premiere 10/3 on AMC!

Julia Ormond (Elizabeth Kublek) on "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMCQuestion:  My first question’s for Julia, and then the second one’s for the two of you, but I’m wondering if you could talk about her morality, because last season, she seemed to be upset about some of the stuff she was doing, but this season, she seems a lot more apathetic. I’m just curious, is there a line she won’t cross, and is it still bothering her? What’s your take on it?

Julia:  My take is that Elizabeth is somebody who compartmentalizes what emotion she will show to what person. So, if something is bothering her profoundly, she would have trouble showing that to somebody she’s intimate with, just because of her personality type. So, yes, but I think really what happens with Elizabeth is…what happens to her belief in what they’re doing in season two.

In season one, for me, she’s utterly, utterly committed to an agenda that’s necessary. They’ve identified that Hope actually has something that could be really critical to the survival of mankind – if she comes in with the right attitude…[and] doesn’t bring in the anger; she goes along with the plan of what they’re meant to be doing and that she’s productive and effective in her time there.

And I do think that it’s not black and white, or I hope it’s not black and white. It’s more kind of gray. It’s like she has to sign up for something that she’s not happy about, but I think people do that in war all of the time. In the military, you accept that there are people who are going to die, and you accept the tragedy. I think we as a populace accept the tragedy of collateral damage. So, I don’t think it’s as much of a pivot as I wish it was in the world.

Question:  Then, for Annet and Alexa, obviously, Huck has been changed by the two girls, even though she says she hasn’t. Can Hope trust her? And for that matter, can she trust your character, because obviously, you’re more about your [getting back to your] sister right now.

Alexa:  I think Hope can learn to trust her; whether or not she does is different story, but I think there’s a lot that Hope doesn’t know, and she has to take that into account. And just like Hope did a bunch of crazy things, or Hope would do a bunch of crazy things for her sister and the people that she loves and to protect them, I think Huck was kind of put in a tough situation as well. But Hope is pretty scarred after what happened in season one, so it’s gonna take a lot if Huck wants to rebuild that relationship with her.

Annet:  Yeah, Huck’s in a really bad spot. At this point, Hope’s just looking at her like, “You’re crazy; I don’t ever really want to talk to you again.” So, I don’t know how she’s gonna get out of this. It’s just looking pretty bad and things are so entangled. She’s relieved to be back, but it’s looking really [like] she’s sort of in the worst position she’s been thus far. In a way, she’s in prison the way Hope is too, because of this web of lies. And all these people out there who know things about the CRM that they shouldn’t have known and that’s Huck’s family now, too, she obviously feels alignment with, and maybe more so than she does with Elizabeth at this point. As we know, there’s more family at the CRM now that Huck has some entanglements with that are problematic. So, it’s just the question – it’s funny when Hope and Huck are sitting in this sort of dog kennel…where they have their conversation like, “Hey, this is a great place for all of us.” It’s so ironic, because they’re just both in prison, really, and it seems like there’s no way out of this all, and is this a better place? Are they safe, or, actually, have things just gotten worse?

Question:   Alexa, I love Hope’s friendship on screen with Elton – or I guess their former friendship, as it were. Will we get to see them mend [it]…and is there hope for them to mend this relationship?

Alexa:  I don’t know if I can tell you what happens with Hope and Elton, but what I can say is that I think there’s always that room orAlexa Mansour (Hope Bennett) on "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMC the possibility of mending something. I think if both people are on the same page and they each get to get their side of the story out, I think that there’s a very strong possibility that they could be friends again. They’ve all been through so much that they realize that sometimes you have to do things, or things happen that are out of your control, and I think when you care about someone, you understand that. I would appreciate the honesty, so I hope so. I hope they do get to mend their relationship.

Question:   Julia, what kind of backstory were you given about Elizabeth’s connection with CRM, and will we be seeing that play out, maybe explore her backstory a bit this season?

Julia:  That’s super hard to answer…without doing spoilers. I think some of the backstory, I think when you have supporting roles, and basically Elizabeth is this sort of character. It’s not always helpful for the backstory to come into the story story, but, yeah, that was kind of [vague]. [laughs]

I think the biggest thing is that she’s a real believer, she signed up for this philosophy, and she thoroughly believes in the choices that they’re making and what they need to do in order to save mankind. Then, there’s this greater detail in that, but I don’t want to answer it any more, because I don’t want somebody like Scott [Gimple] or Matt [Negrete] to go, “Why did you say that, because we’re going to use that.” They sent us a list, “You may not talk about this; you may not [talk about this].” I don’t know if they sent that to you. I was like, “What do I talk about? I don’t know what to talk about now.” So it’s a little scary. There you go, that was an all over the map useless answer.

Question:  Julia, I respectfully have to disagree. I think she’s more than a supporting character, because she casts a very big shadow in the story. She manipulates; she tests people, and when somebody pushes her, she pushes back hard. What’s it like to play all those different aspects and then throw in the fact that she’s a mom, too?

Julia:  Well you know, Jamie Ruby was asking the question earlier in terms of you see her get upset in season one, you see kind of the soldiers get taken off, and then she’s upset. I think, for me, that upset at that moment is this private moment of grief in terms of I’ve not just done this awful thing to this kid that I frankly liked and was a good soldier and all the rest of it, and the grief around how much people can tolerate, but what is my kid going to think of me when they find out and I have to tell them? I think that just packs a punch. And for me, what happens with Elizabeth is you see the dehumanization of it, she becomes increasingly disconnected. She’s just disconnected, and she’s shutting down. So, she’s dissociating, and it’s at certain moments that I really value that she has actually with her own family that pull her back. And maybe – maybe yes, maybe no –  that will actually impact her reevaluation of what they’re actually doing.

Question:  For Alexa, Hope is kind of in a new place. We won’t say more than that. She’s kind of getting acclimated to a lot of different things, and also, there seems to be an aura of distrust a little bit. Where is she mentally at this point?

Alexa:  I thinks she just came from getting so hurt and feeling so betrayed after what Huck did, and she just left her sister; her and her sister just split up, and the only friends that she really feels like she ever had she doesn’t have them, and she doesn’t know what’s happening to them, or where they are. So, I feel like she’s in this spot where she’s like, “Do I let more people in?” Because everyone kind of leaves and no one, nothing ever lasts. Anything good that’s ever happened in my life hasn’t lasted, or it’s turned out to be completely fake. So, I think she’s a little bit on the fence and has this guard up in this new place that she’s in, because she doesn’t want to get hurt again. At least she’s got her father and whatnot, but anybody else that’s not really family, that’s not really a necessity in her life. I don’t think she really is trying to get attached to them after what’s happened.

Question:  And Annet, really briefly, do you feel like she’s a woman without a country right now?

Annet:  Yeah, the other one got exploded, and this one is under attack. Yeah, I mean, she’s always been a woman of her own country, I suppose, of her own reality. So, I don’t know if she particularly needs to be anywhere. She’s not truly attached to anything. She’s a true soldier in a way, going from point A to B, and then she has to keep going. She can’t really sit still anywhere, and you’ll see her coming back to her room, and it all seems distant and doesn’t really mean anything anymore, because she’s changed so much. So, it’s sort of these pauses in between that a soldier never really knows how to deal with anyway. They just like to be away and like to be in these explosive situations; that’s where they thrive. So, Huck’s ready. I think she’s ready for another mission.

Suzanne:   Julia, you’ve been working since you were very young, since high school, at the very least, in acting, and then after that, and a lot of the cast are very young people. Did you have any advice for them? Or did they come to you for any advice?

Julia:  They don’t need advice from me. They don’t need advice from me. I might be asking them advice. Annet, Alexa, did you come to me seeking any advice? [laughs] Did I ever give you any advice? I don’t remember. No, I dont think I did. I’m not much of a sharer in that respect.

Annet:  Honestly, watching Julia and just being in the presence of her is your advice and your lesson and your inspiration, and you just respond to the person, the greatness that’s in front of you. So, that’s everything.

Alexa:  Yeah, Julia is a force to be reckoned with. I know every time I go on set with her I’m like, “How are you doing this? I don’t understand.” So, if there was a person I was going to go to advice for, it would probably be Julia.

Suzanne:   I recently learned that the [show’s] timeline is concurrent with the original Walking Dead, and there’s going to be a movie and some other spinoff series. Have any of you heard about whether any of your characters, or whether you as actors, will be involved in any of these other things, or whether your show will be involved with the ending of the other Walking Dead?

Julia:  I think that’s really a kind of Scott and Matt question. It is one of those things that I like to call them spoiler blurts that you sort of trip up in terms of, “What do I say? What do I say? What do I not say?” So maybe somebody from AMC could help fill in on that question.

Suzanne:   None of you have heard anything that you can comment on at all?

Annet Mahendru (Huck) on "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMCAnnet:  I mean, we’re done, right? But there’s always crossovers. I mean, Jadis joined us. We’re all gonna be around, so they can always pluck us up at any given moment. That’s, I think, what is so cool about all these, this threesome, so to say, of shows, because we can all play with each other at any point.

Julia:  Also, they have this format where there’s flashbacks, and you go back, and you see stuff, so even if a character dies, you still don’t know whether or not they’re going to resurface in another [show].

Question:   Elizabeth is such an insanely manipulative character and who really sends chills down my spine. So, as an actor, what is your process going into this character, and how do you prepare yourself before you act the hell out of her?

Julia:  So, everybody sees her as manipulative, and I guess there’s a part of me that once you find that justification, I think it was I was talking to Jamie about in the beginning. My justification is that she is part of the military; there’re very few human beings left as far as they know. They work from the facts that they can [unintelligible], so they don’t know if there’s anybody else left in the world. They don’t know if they’re the only human beings left. So, they are working towards building hierarchy and structure and laws, and the ethics have just gone to hell, because their ethic has to be protect the border of whatever the human race is. We can’t let other people – we’ve got limited resources, we can’t necessarily share them with everyone. We need to make relationships with people outside of it. That’s her MO. That’s where she has to end up making tough decisions that, from my own perspective, people who are in the military, they’re making those decisions all the time. Somebody being killed somewhere on our behalf right now, and we kind of have gotten a little bit of – it feels globally as if there’s a little bit of weird acceptance around it, because it’s too painful to confront.

So, there’s a piece of Elizabeth that’s an amplification of that. It’s like I go into a state of denial, because it’s just too painful to accept the reality. Then, that state of denial, I mean, she’s disconnected; she disconnects from personal relationships as well. Then, I think once you have that, you can sign up as a believer. But you can believe in something and not be happy about the consequences of it. You can believe that, “Oh, I had something wrong with my leg and the doctor’s telling me that I have to have it cut off.” It’s kind of like, “Okay, I’m not particularly thrilled about it, but this seems like that’s the best plan going forward.” But I think, for me, it’s kind of getting into it.

Like I watched some of it last night, I was like, “Oh my god, she redefines resting bitch face.” [laughs] Oh my God, this just makes you so grim. But I think that’s kind of like what the sadness and the resignation is. There’s a harshness to the choices that she’s making, and so that kind of shows on the exterior.

Interview Transcribed by Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

Don’t miss our other interview with Joe Holt (Leo) and Natalie Gold (Lyla)!

MORE INFO:

cast members of "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMC

The Walking Dead: World Beyond’s ten-episode second season premieres October 3 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC with all episodes available one week early on AMC+, beginning September 26

Season Two trailer HERE

Season two of The Walking Dead: World Beyond concludes the epic story of Iris (Aliyah Royale), Hope (Alexa Mansour), Elton (Nicolas Cantu), and Silas (Hal Cumpston) — four friends who journeyed across the country on a mission that transformed everything they knew about themselves and the world.  As they face off against the mysterious Civic Republic Military and fight for control of their own destiny, goals will shift, bonds will form and crumble, and innocence will be both lost and found.

The Walking Dead: World Beyond is executive produced by co-creator Scott M. Gimple, co-creator and showrunner Matt Negrete, Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert and Brian Bockrath, and is produced and distributed by AMC Studios. In addition to Royale, Mansour, Cantu and Cumpston, the series stars Nico Tortorella, Annet Mahendru, Julia Ormond, Joe Holt, Jelani Alladin, Natalie Gold and Ted Sutherland.

Episode 201: Konsekans – Premieres October 3 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC

Hope’s commitment to the future is put to the test, jeopardizing a potential reunion.  Iris and Felix meet a new group. Startling revelations are made.

Episode 202: Foothold – Premieres October 10 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC

While some members of the group enact a plan to cover their tracks, others attempt to acclimate to their new surroundings.

Julia Ormond

Julia will next be seen in AMC’s The Walking Dead: World Beyond which will premiere this year. She can most recently be seen in BBC’s Gold Digger. Julia performed opposite Maya Rudolph and Catherine Keener on Amazon’s series Forever from creators Yang/Hubbard (Parks and Rec). She was recently nominated for Best Actress for the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television for Ladies in Black from acclaimed director Bruce Beresford. It will be distributed by Sony later this year. Other recent work includes Howard’s End written by Oscar winner Kenneth Lonergan for the BBC and STARZ which garnered rave reviews. Julia also appeared in HBO’s comedy Tour De Pharmacy opposite Andy Samberg, Will Forte and Orlando Bloom. She also starred in the independent film Rememory opposite Peter Dinklage and late Anton Yelchin which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. On the small screen, Ormond received an Emmy® Award in 2010 for her role in the HBO movie Temple Grandin and in 2012 was nominated for a second Emmy for her guest role on Mad Men. Julia wrapped a season of the SyFy series Incorporated which was produced by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon. Among her film work Julia Ormond starred in the epic Legends of the Fall alongside actors Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, and Aidan Quinn and played the lead role with Harrison Ford in the film Sabrina, directed by Sydney Pollack. In 2008, she starred with Brad Pitt in the fantasy- drama The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and also worked with Benicio del Toro in Steven Soderbergh’s biopic Che. JULIA’S PASSION AND NON-PROFIT WORK Julia was the first and former UNODC Goodwill Ambassador Against Trafficking and Slavery and is the Founder of Alliance to Stop Slavery and End Trafficking (www.assetcampaign.org) that was the origin, architect and convener of the Transparency in Supply Chains Law in CA that passed in 2010. She is Founding Chair of FilmAid International. She was Executive Producer of Calling the Ghosts: A Story of Rope, War and Women which won an Emmy, a Cable Ace, a Robert F Kennedy Journalism Award. and after a screening at the Council of Foreign Relations spurred legislation that enabled the arrest of Milosevich. Julia also participated in Call and Response. a documentary on the state of enslavement today and one of the first documentaries promoting cell phone technology to accept immediate donations to the cause. She is an Associate Producer to Libby Spear’s Playground, which focuses on the environment that enables child trafficking within the U.S. As an advocate, Julia has traveled the world assessing solutions and challenges and she has appeared as an expert witness before the US. Congress and the United Nations. For this advocacy work. she received the World Economic Forum’s Crystal Award” and Women for Women International’s “Peace Award.

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Alexa Mansour

Alexa Mansour just wrapped filming a series lead in the highly anticipated 3rd installment of The Walking Dead universe for AMC. Set in The Walking Dead’s near-future, Mansour plays “Hope,” a hard-drinking and disillusioned teenager who yearns to experience the world outside the confines of her contained community. Mansour beat out thousands of actors for the role and stars opposite Nico Tortorella and Annet Mahendru. In film, Mansour recently starred in the buzzy, social media-driven genre feature Unfriended: Dark Web from director Stephen Susco. She also starred in the MarVista ensemble thriller #Squadgoals . Next up, Mansour will be seen in the independent feature film She’s in Portland opposite François Arnaud and Minka Kelly. On the small screen, Mansour was last seen in guest lead roles on CBS’s Madam Secretary and Bull. She also appeared in notable recurring arcs on CBS’ Seal Team (opposite David Boreanaz), FOX’s The Resident (directed by Phillip Noyce) and most notably, as the troubled “Faiza Assaf” in ABC’s critically acclaimed How to Get Away with Murder. Alexa made her television debut in 2014 as the lead guest lead in Law and Order: SVU’s season 16 premiere, which boasted the highest ratings for a premiere episode in seven years. When Alexa is not acting, she continues to create as a talented singer-songwriter and pianist. She released her freshman single entitled “Misguided Youth” in 2018.

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Annet Mahendru

Annet Mahendru has become a highly sought-after performer for both film and television. Perhaps best known for her critically acclaimed role on the Golden Globe & Emmy winning FX series The Americans, where she played Nina, the mysterious spy opposite FBI Agent Stan (Noah Emmerich). Her portrayal of Nina earned her a Critic’s Choice Nomination for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series and a Gold Derby TV Award Nomination for Drama Guest Actress. She was awarded Showbiz India’s Trailblazer award, recognizing her for an ‘Emerging Leader’ as a rising South Asian Female Actor in Hollywood. Recently, she appeared on the highly anticipated anthology series for Amazon Prime, The Romanoffs. Created, written, directed and executive produced by Matthew Weiner (Mad Men). The series features eight separate stories about people who believe themselves to be descendants of the Russian royal family. She also starred in the dystopian SYFY thriller The Slows, which marks Marvel scribe Nicole Perlman’s directorial debut. It is currently appearing at international film festivals. Annet has established a notable television resume with other credits including The X-Files, Tyrant, The Following, Lethal Weapon, Grey’s Anatomy, White Collar, 2 Broke Girls, and The Blacklist. In addition to her television work, Annet starred in the Sundance film Escape From Tomorrow, played the title role in Sally Pacholok, and appeared in Bridge And Tunnel, and Love Gloria. She was also the voice of Eva in the Penguins of Madagascar movie co-starring Benedict Cumberbatch. On stage, Annet performed in Seven, a play about Afghan refugee Farida Aziza at the LA Theatre Works. A collaboration between 7 playwrights and 7 female activists from around the globe that tells inspiring stories of overcoming adversity to effect real change and improve the lives of women. Born in Afghanistan to an East Indian father and Russian mother, Annet spent her early years learning 6 languages in the Middle East & Europe. She finished high school in New York, earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and Philosophy at St. John’s University. Then embarked on a Master’s degree at NYU’s Global Affairs Program. In addition to her studies, Annet was always part of a stellar acting troupe whether with a renowned Russian actor in St. Petersburg, the HB Studio in New York, at the Groundlings or Diana Castle in Hollywood. She is also highly trained in Mixed Martial Arts and Indian classical dance, Bharatanatyam. Annet currently resides in Los Angeles with her director husband Louie Gibson and their son. She is part of the local charity BreastfeedLA where she advocates for the importance of breastfeeding to help families meet their goals.

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Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Julia Ormond (Elizabeth), Alexa Mansour (Hope) and Annet Mahendru (Huck) of "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" on AMC

Interview with Joe Holt and Natalie Gold

TV Interview!

Joe Holt and Natalie Gold of "The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond" on AMC

Interview with Joe Holt (Leo) and Natalie Gold (Lyla) of “The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond” on AMC by Suzanne 9/23/21

This was such a fun interview, and I really enjoyed it. I loved how they let Joe call on us. Usually they have a PR person doing that. It was a nice change, and he was great at it. Personally, I think he should have his own talk show or podcast (if he doesn’t already). Both actors were very kind and funny. Don’t miss the season premiere 10/3 on AMC!

Question:   Natalie, does Bellshaw have real feelings for this man? Or is it all just part of her need to get him there and keep him there?

Natalie:   Oh, Lyla loves Dr. Bennett. Lyla Bellshaw loves Dr. Bennett. Oh, yeah, absolutely her feelings are real. I, as an actor, and Matt, and Joe and I have had a lot of conversations about that. Oh, yeah, it’s so much more interesting if her feelings are real and genuine. But yeah, she’s in love.

Jamie:   This is actually kind of continuing on that. Natalie, she still, obviously, though, is, with the CRM also. So, my question is, do you think that she would be willing to potentially leave them if [Dr. Bennett] decided to do that and go against it? And can she trust him? I mean, maybe he’ll side with his daughters. Could you both talk to that?

Natalie:   I think I kind of love the way that season one ends and teases that up, because those are all the questions, right? [Can] we trust Lyla? Does she have ulterior motives? What are her ulterior motives? It became kind of clear in season one, by the end of that episode, and that monologue that she has that she really wants to go and tell Leo, and she ends up not telling him that she’s kind of the catalyst for this whole thing starting. It’s because Leo came to Lyla and said, “I have this daughter who’s brilliant,” and Lyla obviously then told her higher ups. So, I think that this season is kind of a great exploration for Lyla’s character, her push and pull between her love for Leo and her real belief in the greater good. And one person what’s the balance? How much is one life worth versus hundreds of thousands of lives and the work that she’s doing? So, it’ll all be explored in season two.

Joe Holt and Natalie Gold of "The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond" on AMCJoe:   Yeah, I mean, not to speak for her character, obviously, but I think that there’s absolute chemistry between the characters that is real, which probably creates some of the conflict for her with her duties. There’s a Civilian Republic, and there’s a Civilian Republic military, and I think the second season starts highlighting some of the differences. Like, I did not plan on being a pawn of the Civilian Republic military. I was working for the Civil Republic, as was Lyla. I do think that the theme of the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, as Spock stated in Wrath of Khan. I think that is a constant theme and a constant source of conflict in the second season. We each keep getting pushed to the next level. That tests that principle and that belief within ourselves.

Natalie:   That was said so much more eloquently [by] Joe, as per usual.

Question:   I think what’s interesting about both your characters is obviously you have a personal relation, and you have both kind of walking a tightrope with the military, but also, there’s the scientists’ portion of your lives to that. You want to do something for the greater good as well. So, talk about kind of balancing all that as characters and playing that as actors. That’s a tight rope you could easily fall off of.

Joe:   I think that the joy of acting is conflict, and also, at the crux of any television show or movie is creating and constantly pouring gas on that fire. As an actor, you can sink your teeth into choices. The beauty of this character, and I think of all the characters in the show, is the constant tug of war between what’s right for me and what’s right for the greater good. Within all that we have to battle our own demons. I have to deal with the guilt that I have over leaving my daughters. I won’t speak for Natalie’s character, but every character, I think, in the show has some inner conflict. Then, they have an external conflict and trying to sort all that out is what creates a lot of joy, I think, for actors.

Natalie:   Yeah, and I think as far as kind of Lyla’s love for Leo, she really fell in love with his mind. He’s one of the greatest minds and most brilliant soul she’s ever met. I think that that’s such a deep part of their connection is how well they work together. She found a real partner in him as far as that goes. I think everything Joe was saying is really right, the inner conflict and guilt that all these characters have, and I think it’s going to be cool as we learn more about all of their backstories in season two, but it’s really a push pull between falling in love with somebody, getting close, being in a relationship with somebody in this universe, because it’s a dangerous universe.

Suzanne:   You just finished shooting the show in June, correct? Now, when did you start shooting?

Natalie:   February.

Joe:   February.

Suzanne:   That didn’t take too long.

Joe:   It depends who you ask.

Suzanne:   Joe, you play a character who’s supposed to be brilliant. So, besides the script and the costumes, what else helps you prepare for such an intellectual role?

Joe:   The beauty of television is – this is gonna sound so obnoxious. They kind of cast the person that fits the role. There’s not much research you can do to become smart. So, hopefully, I can say the words they give me and not trip over them, but what was great was having a sit down with Scott Gimple and Matt Negrete, really, day one or day two, when I got in Virginia the first season, and having them talk about what Leo is operating from. And as actors, that’s the most useful thing is to understand [is] where is it we’re coming from? What is it that we want, and what are the things that have created us? That way, we don’t get into trying to characterize what a smart person does. Fortunately, we have good writing, good casting, and good storytelling, and then, as an actor you just need to try to be as honest and truthful with your circumstances as you can be. So, I credit them with making me seem like a smart person.Joe Holt and Natalie Gold of "The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond" on AMC

Natalie:   Joe got his PhD in Physics in between seasons.

Joe:   [laughs] Go back to grad school for six years in two months.

Natalie:   He’s that good.

Suzanne:   Well, you’re both supposed to be a very smart — too smart maybe for your own good. Natalie, is it safe to say that your character is not very honest, especially in your relationship with Leo, and would you say that she’s not a good person, or she is? What do you think?

Natalie:   I think rule one of being an actor is to find the gray area. Rule one of being an actor is to love your character and to believe in what she does. So, I would never go as far to say that Lyla was not a good person. And I worked really hard and had a lot of great talks with Matt and with Joe this season as well that she – We have found out by the end of season one that she has not told Leo the whole truth. There’s obviously some stuff going on that he does not know about – her motives for doing what she does. We’ll find out more about what she does and why she does what she does in season two, but I think I always, for myself as an actor, had to believe that her reasons were and are formidable, and that the work she does, she believes in it, and that as people, we are capable of honesty and dishonesty and love and betrayal, all in one breath. So, it’s kind of fascinating as an actor to play that.

Suzanne:   Great, and I have a feeling that your relationship will will not end well.

Joe:   [laughs] Don’t say that. Don’t jinx our love affair. It was gonna be a wedding at the end of season two, what are you talking about? A purple wedding.

Natalie:   Like every Shakespeare comedy.

Joe:   That’s right. [laughs]

Suzanne: Well, you have a Huck, not quite a Puck.

Joe:   Well played. Well played.

Question:   Joe, I love the relationship he has with his daughters. Are we going to be getting more of a backstory though about his relationship with Felix to see why he trusts him with the most important people in his life?

Joe:   I think the writers have a real challenge with trying to write for so many characters in a ten episode season, and [there are] definitely glimpses of that coming up in season two – without giving too much away – but I think that a lot of what we saw in season one really lays the groundwork for his relationship with Felix. He took Felix in. Felix was essentially orphaned when the earth fell, or when everything went wrong. Felix needed someone to take him in, and that’s when our relationship began. There’s just tremendous trust there.

In the second season, I think the writers were constantly trying to figure out a way to go forward and provide some sort of historical perspective. So, we didn’t get to go too far in anybody’s past, because we were trying to move forward so much, but the Felix/Leo relationship is family. I think that the relationship definitely gets flushed out more in the second season, and we get to learn a little more about what’s going on with it.

There are pictures of us on a camping trip.

Question:   You and Felix, or the girls?

Joe:   Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

Question:   Then I should ask what’s on your desk at work. Whose pictures do you actually have on your desk at work?

Joe:   Are there any pictures at all?

Natalie:   He has pictures of himself.

Question:   Touché.

Joe:   High school prom king.

Jamie:   Are we going to get to see you guys out of the lab at all? Maybe killing walkers, maybe not, but at least a little bit different atmosphere? Is there anything you can tease about that?

Natalie: Yeah, we venture out of the lab here there. I would say.

Joe:   Yeah, I think that everybody gets put into uncomfortable situations is the best way I can put it. Everybody gets put into a situation. Every character gets put into a situation that they are not comfortable with, and that’s part of the measure of what their character is, part of the measure of their ability to grow. Their willingness to survive in this new world is how they respond to the new environment.

Question:   There’s another component here that’s going on with each of you. Joe, you’re a father, and you’re dealing with that as well as everything else. Natalie, Elizabeth is putting a lot of pressure on you as well. So, it’s juggling lot of different things. Talk about playing those aspects of the characters.

Joe:   It was really challenging in the best of ways to try to find that the truthfulness of those relationships, because he does have an obligation to raise these two young women who, despite their independence, intelligence and resourcefulness, need a father, and as we saw in the first episode, lost their mother tragically. So, he has got his own inner drama going on between trying to move forward, trying to find a solution for this horrible disease, and meeting this new person who he shares so much with. They have a real connection. He admires her mind, and in the same way she said he admires her mind and her soul, and I think there’s some guilt there of even trying to move forward, feeling like in some way you’re doing an injustice to your former life. So, all that stuff is wonderful in the way that it unfolds in season two. And, again, it just it pours more gasoline on that conflict fire of how many masters can you serve? And when you have to make [choices] who gets left out in the cold? So, that’s a really good question. It really does create a lot of tugs of war for Dr. Bennett in the second season.

Natalie:   I think that for Lyla, she is definitely balancing the role that she plays in the CRM, and obviously, she cares about the science. More than more than anything else, I believe she wants to save the world. She wants to find a cure for this disease. She wants the world to go on. She wants it to have a future. She wants to teach all the generations coming up what she does, so that this facility can go on and the science can grow. It’s the only way that the future is going to happen, and she believes in the future. So, she’s balancing that, yes, with the pressure that she’s getting from Elizabeth, and the work that she needs to do and her feelings for Leo. There’s a lot going on internally with her and a lot that she’s struggling to balance as well.

Question:   That’s half the fun, though.

Natalie:   Oh, it’s so much fun.

Suzanne:   In the trailer, it shows Iris and Leo hugging, so we know that they do eventually wind up – finally – in the same place. What was it like for both of you, working with the actresses who play Hope and Iris this season?

Joe:   I nicknamed them “Thing One” and “Thing Two,” because they bring such different – It’s such a different energy to have them on set. They’re sort of getting started in this, and you’re dealing with, to some degree, moody teenagers, but you love them, because they’re so gentle and so wonderful and lovely, really, as people. It’s like, this is what a dad deals with. So, it was really just staying open to the energy that they bring, because you never know what they’re going to bring in. But I’ll tell you this much, when the camera rolls, these two young women know exactly what they’re doing. And, again, they have different personalities. So, it is like you’re the dad of these two different daughters, and the two daughters love each other and then have their own little rivalries. So, it really was a matter of like playing centerfield when you get on set just like what are they bringing in today? And how can I be of service? And how can I be Dad?

Natalie:   Alexa and I met for the first time really on that first episode of season two, because we had not – I have said this, and Joe’s heard this ad nauseam, but the first season I worked by myself until we got to the tenth episode where, thank God, I got to work with the amazing Joe, and that was the best. So, Alexa, when I read the 202 [script] I was like, “Oh, I get to meet Alexa and be with her,” and that was so much fun, because we were kind of meeting each other as people for the first time as our characters were meeting, and I was able to kind of guide her and show her this world and give her a tour of that. So, it was really fun. I was trying to play the, “I love your dad, but I don’t think you know that yet, and I really want you to like me” and the stepmom thing, [and] “you have a brilliant mind, and I’m trying to bring you into this world and get you really excited about everything we’re doing here.” So, there was a lot of personal professional dynamics at play. Then, I mean, Alexa is great. She’s fantastic.

Suzanne:   And Joe, following up on what you just said about the girls, I believe you were on As the World Turns. Was it about the same age as these girls, or were you a little older at that point?

Joe Holt (Leo) of "The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond" on AMCJoe:   As the World Turns was 2004, 2003 so I was 33. So, I was much older. I was much older than them. Stupider, but much older. Not as good as them; not as good on cameras they are, to my discredit.

Suzanne:   Did either of you watch either the regular The Walking Dead or Fear the Walking Dead before you started on the show?

Joe:   I didn’t before I started on the show, because it all happened very quickly for me. I got an audition on a Friday for I think it said “TWD 3.” I was aware of the show, obviously, but I hadn’t watched it. You get an audition, and you go do your thing, and you do the research you can do. But then after I got the part, I watched ten seasons of The Walking Dead. I binged it too, which I don’t recommend. I mean, I do recommend watching it, but bingeing it – like I was watching six episodes a day, and I think the theme song got into my head, and I was like waking up like a drug addict. Like, “I gotta watch Walking [Dead] It was addictive, as you all know, right? It pulls you in. But not before I did the show, and I’m actually kind of glad, because I think the whole point is these characters are starting from their jumping off point, and their jumping off point is with no knowledge of that world. But watching it afterwards, it was just great to watch Negan and Daryl and all those guys. It was great. And Michonne.

Natalie:   I also am admittedly a wimp with anything horror. So, I had not watched The Walking Dead until I got the job. Then, I did exactly what Joe did, and I binged all episodes. And what I loved about it, and what I love about our show is, God, it’s the universe that is created by these brilliant people. It’s terrifying obviously, but it’s the human interactions that make it so rich, and the love between people and the betrayals of people. And, God, I have like an abnormal fear of the apocalypse to begin with, so anything apocalyptic, I’m like, “Oh, that’s not for me. I shouldn’t do that.” My husband read The Road, and I went to go see the movie, and he called me, he’s like, “Don’t watch the movie! I’m begging you!” I’m like, “I’m going to watch the movie,” and I did, and it was a terrible mistake. It’s always about –Joe:   [laughs]

Natalie:   It’s true.

Joe:   I don’t think your fear of the apocalypse is abnormal. I think it’s okay to fear the apocalypse.

Natalie: Is it? It’s like not something you should wake up thinking about all the time. Maybe now, but it’s like, what’s going to happen in the apocalypse? But it’s people that are – I mean, the zombies and the monsters are terrifying, but it’s people who turn into monsters, who stays human, who wants to help, all of that, that’s kind of what I absolutely adored about bingeing The Walking Dead, the original, and then working on our show, as well.

Suzanne:   Yeah, I’m the same way, in fact, because I don’t watch The Walking Dead either for that reason… but I like your show better, because it seems to have a little more human element and little fewer zombies. So, I like that.

Interview Transcribed by Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

Don’t miss our interview with Julia Ormond, Alexa Mansour and Annet Mahendru!

MORE INFO:

The Walking Dead: World Beyond’s ten-episode second season premieres October 3 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC with all episodes available one week early on AMC+, beginning September 26

Season Two trailer HERE

Season two of The Walking Dead: World Beyond concludes the epic story of Iris (Aliyah Royale), Hope (Alexa Mansour), Elton (Nicolas Cantu), and Silas (Hal Cumpston) — four friends who journeyed across the country on a mission that transformed everything they knew about themselves and the world.  As they face off against the mysterious Civic Republic Military and fight for control of their own destiny, goals will shift, bonds will form and crumble, and innocence will be both lost and found.

The Walking Dead: World Beyond is executive produced by co-creator Scott M. Gimple, co-creator and showrunner Matt Negrete, Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert and Brian Bockrath, and is produced and distributed by AMC Studios. In addition to Royale, Mansour, Cantu and Cumpston, the series stars Nico Tortorella, Annet Mahendru, Julia Ormond, Joe Holt, Jelani Alladin, Natalie Gold and Ted Sutherland.

Episode 201: Konsekans – Premieres October 3 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC

Hope’s commitment to the future is put to the test, jeopardizing a potential reunion.  Iris and Felix meet a new group. Startling revelations are made.

Episode 202: Foothold – Premieres October 10 at 10pm ET/9c on AMC

While some members of the group enact a plan to cover their tracks, others attempt to acclimate to their new surroundings.

Joe Holt was born on February 22, 1970 in Tachikawa, Tokyo, Japan. He is an actor and producer, known for The Walking Dead: World Beyond (2020), The Punisher (2017) and Delilah   Check out his Instagram and Twitter

Natalie Gold is an American actress who has appeared in film, television, and stage productions including on Broadway. She is perhaps best known for playing Julia Harwell on the TV show Rubicon, and she has appeared in many films including Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead, I Don’t Know How She Does It, and Love & Other Drugs. Gold grew up in Miami, Florida, and studied theatre at the New World School of the Arts and Emerson College. Find her on Instagram and Twitter!

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Joe Holt (Leo) and Natalie Gold (Lyla) of "The Walking Dead: Worlds Beyond" on AMC