A Discovery of Witches is finally back this week, bringing a welcome dose of time-travelling fantasy in season two to provide the perfect lockdown distraction.
The likes of Teresa Palmer, Matthew Goode, Trevor Eve, Sheila Hancock, Louise Brealey, Ed Bluemel and Owen Teale are all onboard for the show’s second run, as the series swaps modern day Oxford for Elizabethan London.
There are plenty of questions we can’t wait to be answered in season two, but we also want to look back at the very beginnings of the show, and see how some of the performers first came on board.
Who spent their entire audition ‘cracking up’, and who landed their part after their partner told them they were ‘sh**’?
Here, the A Discovery of Witches cast tell all.
Teresa Palmer (Diana Bishop)
‘I auditioned in Hollywood. I had been told that it was probably looking like it was going my way, but I had to do a chemistry read with Matthew Goode. He rocked up and straight off the bat, I realised we had such a similar sense of humor. We were just cracking each other up the whole time.
‘In fact, Kate Rhodes, the casting director, said: “You guys, we should actually film something. I know, we’re having giggles and we’re having laughs, but we should film something.” It was just great, it was wild. Matthew and I didn’t really know what we were doing. We just sort of threw some scenes down. I walked away not feeling 100% that it went my way. I sort of just like, left it up to the universe and said “If it’s meant to be it’s meant to be.” But I definitely knew I’d gotten on so well with Matthew and the whole point of the audition was really for a chemistry read, so that aspect I felt confident about.
Steven Cree (Gallowglass)
‘I did a self tape for it at first. My wife, who is a casting director, also helped me put down the tape. People think that’s an advantage, but it’s definitely not always. She’s very pointed at telling me when I’m sh**. It kind of helped in this situation.
‘I had heard that they’d been searching for quite a long time by this point. Physically, the character in the book is described as very tall. I am not very tall, so I wasn’t entirely sure if I had the right physicality. But in reading the description of him, I instantly thought that I could do this. Then I got told there was interest, and then I met the director and was told they were very interested. By that point I could have only messed things up in the audition, which gives you an extra pressure. I have actually had that before, where I’ve been told that the job was mine and then had it taken away from me. So you never quite know. But yeah, I went to the audition and fortunately I got the part.’
Adelle Leonce (Phoebe Taylor)
‘My audition was with the director straight away, which is quite rare when you do your first audition. I had quite a lot of big auditions all around the same time. I remember thinking, ‘just do it and you just cross your fingers and hope that you get one of them’.
‘I also remember going, ‘Okay, she’s got some fire, she got some sass’. I’m done playing submissive, boring women. Who wants to see that anymore? And so for me, I thought if I got it, it would be amazing. I think two weeks later I got a call from my agent and I was told I’d got it from that first audition.’
Edward Bluemel (Marcus Whitmore)
‘I went in for one audition way back for series one. I did a scene where I first met Teresa Palmer’s character Diana, and I smell her and sniff her and tell her that she has AB negative blood, and it’s a bit creepy.
‘So I did that, and all the director said for the whole audition was “very naughty”. I didn’t know if that was good. I didn’t know if that was bad, but that was all he said. So then I went back in and did the same again, but then I had to do another tape. They said, “Oh, can you tape yourself doing it in an American accent?” In the books, Marcus is American and blonde, and has a really good body, apparently. So, I let everyone down, basically.
‘I sent my American accent tape off and then they were like, “Yeah, we’re gonna stick to English.” Probably because we’re American accents substandard, but they still gave me the part which was really nice. It was a little bit of a more drawn out process.’
A Discovery Of Witches Season 2 begins on January 8 at 9pm on Sky One.
Credit: Original article published here.