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The thrills and spills continue. Revenge star Emily VanCamp tells Aref Omar there’s more to come
TV fans have been kept in suspense each week as romance, drama and action meld together in the deadly pursuit of retribution in hit series Revenge.
Taking inspiration from Alexandre Dumas’ classic tale, The Count Of Monte Cristo, Revenge is told from the perspective of young Amanda Clarke, played by Emily VanCamp, who returns to the Hamptons with the alias Emily Thorne to seek revenge on those who destroyed her family.
At the top of her hit list is the icy Victoria Grayson, (Madeleine Stowe), matriarch of the Grayson family, who betrayed her father.
So far she has already deftly negotiated her way into the upper echelons of the Hamptons. But as she slowly unravels her plan, emotional entanglements and other unforeseen circumstances complicate matters, making the plot much more interesting.
VanCamp, best known for her roles in Everwood as Amy Abbott and on Brothers & Sisters as Rebecca Harper, revels in her role, deftly dispatching her victims one-by-one.
The 25-year-old Canadian actress, with looks that could kill, has also starred in films such as The Ring Two, Carriers and Norman. She tells us more.
What drew you to the project and the character of Emily?
It was a fun challenge to play to the dark side of Emily (laughs). I was attracted to the story which was different and the brilliant script. She’s got this almost comic-book, dark vigilante-like feel. I felt connected to this character even though I’m nothing at all like her. She’s just so twisted and determined. She’s like Dexter. It’s definitely been fun.
You’ve been in two other well-received TV series before. How has Revenge been different for you?
Being in an ensemble cast took the pressure off me immensely for those shows. Since I play the main character here, it’s a lot more weight on myself, for the show to succeed. But I was prepared to give it a shot. I feel very humbled by the success of Revenge so far, it’s just been a really wonderful journey.
You started off learning ballet. Why did you choose to become an actress?
I guess I didn’t love dance enough. I had taken acting lessons on the side and soon fell in love with it. The passion was there and I realised that this was something I could do for life, as my career.
One of the best things about watching Revenge are the face-off sequences between Emily and Victoria. How did you guys create that sizzling chemistry?
Actually we sort of had that chemistry to begin with, so it was really fun to film those pretty dark and silly scenes. We’d be really serious about it during the filming, then we’d laugh it off afterwards. I’m very lucky to be able to work next to Madeleine, it’s an honour.
Who inspires you, acting-wise?
There are so many. I think Meryl Streep is the epitome of what an actress should be, with so much class and grace. She keeps on reinventing herself. I also admire Cate Blanchett and actresses like Audrey Hepburn, Katherine Hepburn and Grace Kelly, who incidentally was whom the wardrobe designers modelled the dresses after.
Aside from the thrilling storytelling and engaging characters do you think the current economic situation in the US has sparked interest in the show?
It has definitely struck a chord with the American people. I think people take pleasure in seeing the wealthy being taken down in a not-so-nice way. And what my character goes through and does is symbolic of what people are experiencing in the US.
Will Emily’s relentless pursuit of revenge ever let up?
She has an interesting character struggle and whenever she wants to lay it down to rest, she’s tragically let down again. The revenge aspect connects her to her past and without it, she has nothing. Mike Kelley (the series creator) is the mastermind behind it all and I have so much faith in him. As the season progresses into the next, we may see many more people coming into the picture and opening up other worlds of revenge that may even extend beyond the Grayson family. There’ll be plenty of surprises for sure.
Catch Revenge every Monday & Tuesday (10.45pm) on Star World (Astro Channel 711) and Star World HD (Astro Channel 722).