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Buzz buzz! Season two of Yellowjackets has arrived, with several new cast members, a snowier backdrop and darker plot that star Jasmin Savoy Brown admitted when first reading the script made her think, “This is so fucked up.”
“I was excited to explore what was going to happen but freaked out for what everyone was going to think, to be honest,” she told The Hollywood Reporter at the show’s Los Angeles premiere on Wednesday. “Hope we don’t get canceled!”
Season two continues the show’s dual timeline of the ’90s high school soccer team that crash-landed in the remote wilderness, spliced with the team’s grown-up members nearly 25 years later who are still trying to deal with the trauma of what they experienced. Winter has now hit the teen survivors, leading to some harsh filming conditions for the young cast members, who shot indoor cabin scenes on a soundstage and outdoor scenes in the woods of Canada.
The cast noted how oftentimes the adult and young actors feel like they’re on separate shows, especially this season when the conditions were so different.
“There was more running into each other [between the two casts] this year because we were all filming on soundstages in the same building, so we’d be walking on our way somewhere with our rags and dirt and fucked-up hair, and the grown-up cast would be on their way somewhere in their normal clothes,” joked Liv Hewson. “It’s just like, ‘Oh, hi guys, wow you look awful. Are you alright?’ And ‘Like no, see you soon.'”
The adult cast — who this season added Lauren Ambrose, Simone Kessell and Elijah Wood — had their own take on the dynamic, with Juliette Lewis teasing, “We kind of giggle on the side. We’ve been doing this for 30 years so we’re like, ‘You guys do the heavy lifting, we’ll go through our emotional beats, but we’re not going to do some gory stuff.’ They do a lot and they’re brilliant.”
Melanie Lynskey added that the young actors “have the harder job for sure” being out in the elements, and supports them from afar: “Just like, ‘Good luck to you guys, you’re going to be amazing.’ They’re all so talented, they’re doing an incredible job, but a lot is being asked for sure.” Tawney Cypress joked the young cast shouldn’t get too much sympathy, though.
“First of all, they shot in a studio, OK, with some fake snow. We adults had to actually go out into the wilderness, we spent many weeks out there, in the cold, in the dark. We got the load this year,” she teased. “Don’t feel bad. They’re fine, they’re young!”
And despite the heavy material and harsh conditions, the actors say they are all good at keeping things light and fun in between takes.
“My cast of girls, we all have a very stupid sense of humor, dirty — Tawny will tell you after 11:30 p.m., I kind of turn into a 14-year-old guy,” said Lewis, as Cypress confirmed, “We played a lot of Trivial Pursuit, we play around quite a bit in between takes and it’s actually hard to wrangle us. I feel bad for directors because we’re constantly talking and making pretty inappropriate jokes that shouldn’t be told.”
For the young stars, Kevin Alves said, “I think honestly we joke around a lot, we don’t take things seriously unless we’re dealing with really serious content. There’s days that you just can’t avoid it, it’s just so dark that you’re like, ‘I need time, I’ve got to step away,’ we eat lunch alone. Some days it’s like, ‘I just need a few minutes away from all of this.’ But many days we’re just hanging out. We have a bunch of us who watch Love is Blind during lunches all together every day, so that’s kind of how you keep it light,” saying he, Samantha Hanratty and Alexa Barajas are among the Netflix dating show devotees.
Added Steven Krueger, “With how heavy this show can be sometimes we would die without that. The cameras cut and Jasmin is kicking my crutch out from underneath me, while someone else is recording it. There’s all kinds of fun and laughing and jokes going on because otherwise we’d just go crazy, truly.”
Yellowjackets season two premieres Sunday on Showtime.
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