1428 ELM: Can you talk about your relationship with Will Lee Yun‘s character Arthur Deane? That relationship is so fascinating to watch especially since they have a different approach to Carrie.
REED: It’s funny you brought that up because the only discussion Krysten [Ritter] and I had on set—I had the good fortune to have some time to prepare for this, and I really thought I knew who Hosea was and when I showed up on set on the first day. She was like, “Have you seen Will’s work [as Arthur]?” and I hadn’t yet, and she’s like, “He’s amazing, he’s so intense.” She goes, “I think you’re more intense.” I go, “No! No Krysten, I’m definitely not.”
That’s who he is, and I could never be more intense than Will. Will is intense. He’s the attack dog, I think I even say that line, or someone says that line in reference to him. I get to be the sort of beneficent leader. He’s lethal. It was great, too, because I’m a big fan of Will’s work. We got to spend a lot of time together. He’s a really awesome guy. It was great telling actor stories and talking about all of our experiences on set on different shows.
That’s an amazing character, Arthur Deane, but his relationship too [to Carrie], his relationship is based on love in a very strange and twisted way, too. I think that’s what makes all of the characters so compelling. Even the smallest characters are fully fleshed out.
I don’t even know if you know this, but we shot this in June or July, and I probably read the pilot in March or maybe April. I was saying to Casey, as I did every time I was on set, “I just love this so much, you’re so smart, I’m so impressed by you.” I told her I had read the script repeatedly, and I asked, “When did you start this?” And she wasn’t writing this until January of this year.
1428 ELM: Oh, wow, that’s impressive.
REED: I’m intimidated. That’s a genius level of accomplishment that she was able to weave in all of these themes and all of these complex characters. And everyone feels real. The kids feel real, everyone just, there are no small parts in this one. Everyone has a real, compelling backstory, and it has all of the colors.
That’s what’s fascinating with the kids, too, they have heroic qualities, and they have not-heroic qualities as we all do. And I think that’s much more compelling for an audience because we all have that shadow side and, hopefully, our better qualities. I think The Girl in the Woods very intentionally does all of that.
1428 ELM: What are you most excited for people to see from this show and your character?
REED: I really really really love this character! It was so much fun and, talking about horror movies, the scariest thing I had to do on this show was I showed up the first day, and I got into the makeup and hair trailer. And I’m a man of a certain age, and the makeup department informed me that none of the men would be wearing makeup on this show, so that was actually the scariest thing I had to do. I was like, alright, everyone’s going to get to see my real face! [Laughs]
No, but what I love about this show, first of all, I’m so excited for my daughter and all of her peers to see it because I think they’ve been clamoring for this show. These are the conversations they’re having. They want to see these characters represented but not as a “tick the box” and not as a plot device, just as this is who people are now, and they are able to express themselves much more fully. And then she really wants to see—and this is probably the best way to bring it home—she wants to see compelling horror with a great and deep mythology.
All eight episodes of The Girl in the Woods will be available to stream exclusively on Peacock beginning on Thursday, October 21.