Amy Acker played Fred in Joss Whedon’s Angel and was also in Dollhouse. She was at Wondercon and Sci-Fi Wire spoke with her about Whedon’s horror film, Cabin in the Woods, and a new ABC show called Happy Town.
First up the TV show Happy Town – is making a strong case for being the next TV obsession. Set in Haplin, Minn., the show deals with people who are disappearing in kidnappings that many think are the work of “the Magic Man.” Others say there’s nothing wrong. It premieres April 28 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.
It stars M.C. Gainey, Geoff Stults and Amy Acker and produced by Josh Appelbaum. They all spoke about the show which sounds like a mix of Twin Peaks, Eureka and more.
M.C. Gainey (Tom Friendly in Lost) plays Haplin sheriff Griffin Conroy. “It’s just one of those towns [where] you don’t know what’s going on there, and the people who do know what’s going on, I’m not even sure they’re people,” Gainey said. “I don’t know that I’m at liberty to tell you much more than that, except that this ain’t your average little small town.”
“I go a little crazy,” Gainey said. “I go a little bit crazy. I kick a lot of ass in this later on. You stick around, I get to kick ass and take names. Heavily armed and heavily medicated, I’m out there busting it up.”
“Let me put it this way,” Appelbaum said. “Whether the characters aren’t people, there will be an introduction of some animals into the show that there’s something going on with these animals that the animals might not be what they seem.”
See what I mean about Twin Peaks where the owls were not what they seemed! They hope that the show does scare people.
“We were like, let’s just make our cry from hell,” Appelbaum said. “Particularly ABC, they haven’t had a truly scary show on the air in a while. In fact, I don’t know that any network has put on just a straight-up scary show. We were like, ‘Let’s just come up with what our version of a cry from hell would be.’ We’re also huge Twin Peaks fans, Stephen King fans, so this was sort of our opportunity to hit that genre and have fun with it.”
“There’s not vampires, but you’ve got people disappearing,” Amy Acker said. “You don’t know what’s happening to you. They were saying more illusion than supernatural, but still. I would like to know what the illusions are, because they really look good.”
“This is a small-town show.” Applebaum continued, “There is a simplicity to that, and there’s a mystery in the town. There are several mysteries, but there is a central mystery: Who is the Magic Man? It’s very classic, old-school storytelling. It isn’t about this vast cast of characters or global events. It’s this town, there are these people, there’s a mystery, who’s behind these abductions, what’s going on? So I think it’s very familiar storytelling for an audience, even though we’re trying to do it in an unconventional way.”
Unlike Lost and others shows of that ilk the mystery of the Magic Man will be found out at the end of the first Season.
“Once you answer that question, it opens up a whole other layer of mysteries,” Appelbaum said. “How is that humanly possible? What does that mean? What is that about? What does that mean about all the other people in the town? I think people will be like, ‘Now I’ve got to keep watching to figure out what the repercussions of that will be.’ Plus the fact that in the final episode, one way or the other, the audience is going to find out who the Magic Man is. That doesn’t necessarily mean the other characters on the show will. There’s still going to be the drama of that moving forward, of when is this person going to be found.”
Happy Town stars Geoff Stults as Tommy Conroy, Sam Neill as Merritt Grieves, Lauren German as Henley Boone, Steven Weber as John Haplin, Amy Acker as Rachel Conroy, Sarah Gadon as Georgia Bravin, Robert Wisdom as Roger Hobbs, Jay Paulson as Eli “Root Beer” Rogers and Ben Schnetzer as Andrew Haplin.
Recurring stars include Frances Conroy as Peggy Haplin, Abraham Benrubi as Big Dave Duncan, M.C. Gainey as Sheriff Griffin Conroy, Peter Outerbridge as Handsome Dan, Warren Christie as Greggy Stiviletto and Sophia Ewaniuk as Emma Conroy.
Sounds very cool, so I will give it a watch whenever it shows up here in the UK.
What about Whedon’s mysterious Cabin in the Woods? Acker let slip that it is more than a serial killer type of thing.
“There’s a lot of scary monsters,” Acker said “It’s a scary movie.”
“It does take from the sort of formula of the horror movie of this group of young kids who go away to a cabin in the woods for the weekend, and everything that happens and what you think is supposed to happen.”
The film is currently being converted into 3D but is due out on 14th January 2011.