“Schitt’s Creek” alum tries on corset for waist in gothic horror series “Chapelwaite”

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Emily Hampshire’s agent had a directive for her first post- “Schitt’s Creek” role: no plaid, no baggy jeans.

“And I think the furthest thing from that was a corset,” Hampshire said on a Zoom call. “She really liked me doing something the opposite.”

Plaid shirts and jeans were an essential part of Stevie Budd, the sarcastic motel manager in the beloved Canadian television comedy about a wealthy family fallen on hard times, a role that won the Hampshire six Canadian Screen Awards and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding. Set of humorous series.

That day, Hampshire looked very different from Stevie in a tailored white blazer, lilac eyeshadow and pink lipstick. She was enthusiastic about “Chapelwaite”, the horror television series she stars in – and not just stars, but gets the second award for Oscar winner Adrien Brody, who plays whaling captain Charles Boone .

Hampshire, 39, plays a character who was not in “Jerusalem’s Lot”, the Stephen King short story “Chapelwaite” is based on: aspiring writer Rebecca Morgan, who becomes the governess of widower Boone’s three children after bringing them to his family’s spooky ancestral home in Maine.

The Montreal native isn’t the first “Schitt’s Creek” actor to do something diametrically opposed to his “Schitt’s” character as a follow-up role. Annie Murphy, who played the spoiled but big-hearted girl Alexis in “Schitt’s,” caused a stir earlier this year when she portrayed an unhappy and unhappy sitcom woman in AMC’s comedy-drama “Kevin Can F ** k Himself “.

To some extent, it seemed in Hampshire that she was meant to play Rebecca.

“The crazy thing is when it happened to me, I had just sold my own show that I was going to be a writer on and was reading Stephen King’s book ‘On Writing’. And I couldn’t believe that part of playing a writer was coming to me and I felt – I don’t want to be that person – but the universe is telling me something.

Rebecca “is so ahead of her time that even when I met the Filardi brothers, who wrote this, and Donald De Line, the producer, I was like, ‘Are you sure you got the right fit? ‘ … I never thought someone would think of me that way, ”Hampshire said. “And they were like, ‘We don’t want who you would think of for a role like this. “They wanted a really modern Rebecca, which I love.

Hampshire envisions the aspiring horror writer as “the wife Stephen King,” if King were a woman in the 1850s. “I love how brave she is to walk into this house, as if she wanted to go to the root of the story and get some serious inspiration. “

There are indeed many things that would keep a less robust female away from the Chapelwaite house: weird noises behind the walls, a truly spooky basement that was the scene of a violent death, a family curse that could plague Boone. and, oh yes, undead visitors.

And then there are the folks at Preacher’s Corners who, superstitiously blaming the Boones for a disease that is killing some of the residents and looking askance at Charles’s half-Polynesian children, want to kick the family out of town.

The tone of the show is classic Gothic horror, but fears of a mysterious disease and distrust of strangers are certainly themes anyone who has lived through the COVID-19 pandemic can relate to.

Brody, 48, who has done very little television in a film career that includes becoming the youngest Oscar winner for Best Actor at 29 for “The Pianist,” was drawn to these parallels.

“You want to have something that has some depth and some relevance,” he said in a separate Zoom call. “’Chapelwaite’ talks about not being welcome because you are different and you are a parent and you are overwhelmed by… a potential mental state which is all this internal burden that is bubbling… It is all really exciting with which one to work with and I think interesting drama.

He grew up with movies like “Nightmare on Elm Street” which “are really for gore and shock and awe”. While there is a part of that in “Chapelwaite”, “there is an intention to dig a little deeper into and represent life … we are still grappling with concerns and challenges very similar to those of men and women.”

Not that Brody doesn’t agree with the horror of “Chapelwaite”. As a fan of King and Edgar Allan Poe’s work, he said sharing this horror with viewers was a pleasure. “To sort things out and let the tension build, I think it’s fun to slowly pull in and then drop a few really scary bombs along the way.”

For its part, Hampshire was in full swing. “I love the gothic horror aesthetic,” she said.

“If I’m being honest, the TV I watch is murder documentaries. And what I read is a real crime, ”she added. “And I’m fascinated by the minds of these kinds of people… psychopaths and serial killers… I think there must be something wrong with me.” But then, these are like the best things on Netflix. So the rest of the world also has problems.

“Chapelwaite” will debut August 22 at 10 p.m. on CTV Sci-Fi Channel and can be streamed on CTV.ca and the CTV app.

Beyond Schitt’s Creek

Here’s where you can watch the other cast members.

Annie murphy

Murphy, who was about to quit acting before taking on the role of Alexis, made the most publicized transition after the transition from “Schitt”. She received praise for playing the hopelessly unhappy wife of a man buffoon in AMC’s “Kevin Can F ** k Himself”. It has yet to be renewed for a second season, but Season 1 can be purchased on Apple TV.

Tim Rozon and Sarah Lévy

Rozon, who played Alexis’ lover, the handsome Mutt Schitt, is Luke Roman, the suave owner of a real estate agency specializing in haunted houses at “SurrealEstate”. Sarah Levy, who was the hippie waitress Twyla in “Schitt’s,” is an ambitious agent who joins Luke’s office. The Bell Media-Syfy series has yet to be renewed, but season 1 can be streamed on CTV.ca.

Dustin Milligan

Milligan, who played Alexis’ other love interest, veterinarian Ted, is a reporter who exposes the settler-native conflict in the town of “Rutherford Falls” as well as a romantic interest in the Native American character Reagan. The Peacock series has been renewed, with the first season streaming on StackTV or the Global TV app.

Noah reid

Reid, a fan favorite of “Schitt” as Daniel Levy’s character boyfriend David, has joined the cast of “Outer Range,” a drama starring Josh Brolin as a rancher from Wyoming, expected on Amazon Prime Video on an unspecified date. Reid plays a member of a rival family.

Karen robinson

Robinson, who was City Councilor Ronnie in “Schitt’s,” co-starred as Unit Commander Edwina Shanks in the crime drama comedy “Pretty Hard Cases,” which is in production for its second season in Toronto. Season 1 can be streamed on CBC Gem.

Jennifer robertson

Robertson, who played the wife of Mayor Jocelyn Schitt, appeared as suburban mother Ellen Baker in “Ginny & Georgia”, a friend of the main character Georgia. Netflix, where you can stream Season 1, has renewed the dramatic comedy for a second season.

Debra Yeo is associate editor and contributor to Star’s Entertainment. She is based in Toronto. Follow her on Twitter: @realityeo



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