‘Killing Eve’: Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer Reflect on ‘Bittersweet’ Last Day of Filming
Article from ET.
Killing Eve is gearing up for its final chapter. The stars of BBC America’s outgoing drama came together (virtually, of course) on Thursday to reflect on the transformative time making the show and to tee up the upcoming fourth and final season, which kicks off Feb. 27.
The new season picks up following the dramatic events in the season 3 finale, with Eve (Sandra Oh), Villanelle (Jodie Comer) and Carolyn (Fiona Shaw) in very different places. Following Eve and Villanelle’s exchange on the bridge, Eve finds herself on a revenge mission, while Villanelle has found a new community in an attempt to prove she’s not a “monster.” Having killed Paul, Carolyn goes to extraordinary lengths to continue to chase down The Twelve and the person that ordered Kenny’s hit.
“What we really played around with this season, we’ve been exploring this question of, can she change? Can we change? What I loved about what Laura did was, we actually see Villanelle put that into action. We see her trying,” Comer told reporters during the show’s virtual Television Critics Association winter press tour panel. “Throughout the whole series, you really witness each character’s growth and there are a lot of lessons that Villanelle learns that I don’t think she’s actually aware of. She’s so desperate to change in the beginning and I’m not sure that comes from a truthful place. However, when you see this season in its entirety, you really, truly see just how she’s done, so that’s really great to see.”
“At the beginning of season 4, you can see the greatest amount of change [in Eve]. I really wanted to establish that Eve physically and energetically is very, very much changed,” Oh added. “You see her different in the way that she’s clearly gained skills. That she’s not afraid of violence in herself or inflicting it on others. That she’s adapted a lot of… she’s integrated a lot of elements from Villanelle in how she disguises her personas. I really wanted that change and that freshness to come in this fourth season,” Oh said. “Jodie and I were looking at a picture of season 1 — it was a promo shot. They’re completely changed. When I look at Eve, she has this innocence and she doesn’t have it on her anymore. I was really pleased to be able to evolve the character that way.”
Comer and Oh, who were joined by Shaw and executive producer Sally Woodward Gentile and head writer/showrunner Laura Neal on the panel, also shared the emotional day they wrapped filming on the series.
“What was really surreal for me on the last day was that the last shot I did was the last shot for Villanelle of the whole season. It was a really weird mirror that was happening,” Comer recalled. “That was like, ‘Wow, OK,” it was all very real. The wonderful thing about that day was Sandra and I, we were together, so we got to experience that together , which was really special… It was bittersweet. It was intense. It was a lot. It was overwhelming, for sure.”
“On my last day, I was at an iconic location and it was about to rain,” Shaw shared, describing it as “a celebration.”
“Jodie and I were lucky enough to do the last shot of the show together. And it’s too much of a spoiler to say where we were and the setting, but it was very technically challenging,” Oh teased. “I was really happy that we were both together. I think we were both happy that we were together. It’s not slow, what we do. It’s very fast and there’s a lot of moving parts that’s moving around a lot so it’s not a slow, relaxing thing. You have to get out.”
“To sign it off with the majority of our crew, we were all together on the very last day of the previous couple days, we were on a certain location that was very, very iconic. There was this one particular moment where everyone stepped out together to see the same view. You just feel as a company, not only in the cast but all the crew, that you were making something together. I was really glad because it was a really challenging shoot this year because of the pandemic. So I was really glad that we were all able to feel that filmmaking moment. This is why we do it and we all did it together, and I’m glad we had that, at least, in the last couple of days.”
To say Killing Eve has been life-changing for both Comer and Oh is an understatement. Since the series’ 2018 debut, both leading ladies have won numerous awards (an Emmy for Comer in 2019, a Golden Globe for Oh that same year, among many others) and received notice for their head-turning performances. The duo did their best to put into words what the show and their respective characters have meant to them, as well as how it’s shaped their lives and careers.
“I’m not sure what she represents,” Comer admitted. “I will definitely say that she’s changed my life in many ways, in a very obvious way in the work that I’m now able to do in an acting sense and being an actress… I was extremely subconscious coming into this process and there was something about playing her, I had to get rid of that. I had to dare and I had to be a little fearless and that has definitely filtered through my own life. She has very bad qualities but there’s a lot about her that I like to celebrate. That lack of care in what people think and just her being herself is something I really kind of took with me.”
“For me, it’s been a tremendous gift that I’m really, really grateful for. I’m grateful Sally, because very rarely as an actor — although hopefully it’s changing — that you are able to grow in the act of creation. The act of creating this show was very, very challenging and very challenging for me, but can help you grow as a person and as an actor,” Oh said. “But I say… I was very much actively trying to grow Eve as a character and in that process I had to grow as a person. I had to grow as well and sometimes that doesn’t happen in the most comfortable ways. It doesn’t happen in comfortable ways for Eve so it I don’t think it necessarily happened in comfortable ways for me. But when you’ve been around enough you just know those rare times that you’ve been a part of the creation and as an actor, it’s a very special place to be.”
Killing Eve premieres its final season Sunday, Feb. 27 on BBC America.