“It’s an enticing proposition for an actor,” reveals Rebecca Hall about her role as an enigmatic scientist in small-town Ohio on Amazon’s visually striking sci-fi anthology series “Tales From the Loop.” “When you’re playing characters which are ‘difficult’ or ‘complicated’ or not particularly likeable, half the work is explaining why and in her case it was explained why quite early on.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Hall above.
“Tales From the Loop” is based on the acclaimed sci-fi illustrations of Swedish artist Simon Stålenhag and was developed for TV by writer Nathaniel Halpern (“Legion”). The series follows the lives of the townsfolk living above “The Loop,” a machine built to unlock and explore the mysteries of the universe. Unlike what we would ordinarily expect from the genre, the show is not necessarily focused on uncovering or explaining the mysteries of this otherworldly machine. Rather, it explores how these people experience the inexplicable events that take place above the Loop, drawing on overarching themes like grief, loss, love and wonder. While each of the eight episodes are mostly standalone, they are still connected by a common thread, as characters come and go throughout the series as they are impacted by the mysterious Loop machine underneath them.
For Hall, the series was an opportunity to be involved in something different and unique. “It’s very interesting to play someone who is as smart and career oriented and fragile as Loretta is at the same time. She’s quite socially stunted in some ways and she’s not very good at expressing her emotions,” she explains. “I had a lot of freedom to be as awkward as I wanted to be.”
When she was offered the role of Loretta, Hall was intrigued by the idea of telling stories about universal human emotions that were originally inspired by Stålenhag’s austere, futuristic artworks and imagination. “The fact that is based on an artwork, or that it is inspired by artwork I found really exciting,” Hall admits. “It was totally mysterious to me, the idea that a TV show, that a TV drama, that a sci-fi drama, high concept, anything could be based on illustrations, was totally novel to me,” she says.
“It was very informative because there’s a quality that comes off these art pieces that is very restrained and very specific and very spare and the show does a very good job of translating that into something cinematic.”
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