WWD – Around this time last year, British actress Jenna Coleman was aboard a plane to Australia. “With the most amount of fear,” she adds.
Coleman was en route to film the mystery BBC miniseries “The Cry,” which debuted in the fall of 2018. “What’s been most amazing is the speculation,” she says of reaction to the show and the accompanying whodunit around a mother and her missing child. “The worst thing in the world would be a really obvious psychological thriller that doesn’t keep people guessing; that doesn’t have secrets.”
Coleman’s had little time to catch her breath since that plane ride — a day after wrapping “The Cry,” she was back in character as Queen Victoria for the third season of “Victoria,” which premieres Jan. 13. There’s been a lot of filming, a lot of press, and as Coleman puts it, “It’s been a real freight train of a year.”
“To be honest, each project that you start feels quite scary, always feels like a bit of a mountain in a way in terms of: how on earth do I get to know who the real Queen Victoria was? And how on earth do I play a grieving mother going through the most unimaginable circumstances in a way that can lend itself to a thriller where you have to play the truth, but never give the truth?”
The answer for Coleman is a lot of research channeled through intuition. At the end of the second season of “Victoria,” her character had already become a mother to three children, with four more “on the way.”
“The feeling we left them with was ‘we’re no longer children anymore, are we?’” she says, describing the dynamic with her onscreen husband Prince Albert, played by her real-life partner Tom Hughes. “And then we pick up this season and it’s like: jump cuts, so many years [have passed], they have seven children now, they’ve been married 10 years. And so she herself is older and looking at [the question] how do we age?”
While the 32-year-old brunette has no personal experience as a mother to draw from, Coleman still had a deep pool of maternal proclivities to tap into for both “The Cry” and the upcoming season of “Victoria,” and in a way, her portrayals benefited from her explorations of the other one.
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