Actress Julia Ormond is set to take on the role of a witch in Lifetime Television's upcoming drama series "Witches of East End," which premieres on the cable network on Oct. 6.
Ormond, who is known for roles films such as "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" and "Legends of the Fall" and for her Emmy Award-winning performance in the 2010 HBO movie "Temple Grandin," stars in the new show as Joanna Beauchamp, a single mom to actresses Rachel Boston's and Jenna Dewan-Tatum's characters, who unknowingly are a part of a new generation of witches.
Ormond spoke to OTRC.com about the new series, why her character is a "straight up witch," and how the changing landscape of television writing lured her back to the small screen.
Check out OTRC.com's Q&A with Julia Ormond.
1. Describe Joanna.
"She's a straight up witch. She's all witch. She's a lying witch. Joanna, she's immortal, she's about 600 years old, around that. She is, in this lifetime, she is a mom, a single mom, she has her two girls and they still live at home. She's a school teacher and she's lying through her teeth to her daughters about the fact that she's hidden their powers from them."
"She has not told them that they're witches, she hasn't helped them practice and understand their gifts, because she thinks that's going to bring about an early death for them, which it has done in all their prior lives that they've had. And then her sister turns up after a 100-year row and tells her that somebody is after them and is set to destroy them and all hell breaks loose and her plan does not work out to hide it all."
2. That's a pretty big deal to hide something like that from your daughters, wouldn't you say?
"Yeah, I think when I first read it I kind of looked at it, it's almost like it's a metaphor for how we kind of talk to kids about drugs and addiction and almost the sort of parental take of, 'Oh no, drugs are bad and you'll instantly become addicted.'"
"There's a whole school of thought that actually went wrong with that messaging was there was an absence of, 'Maybe it's going to make you feel good,' and there's a softer message and a different message in terms of acknowledging what someone is going to go through, something that feels powerful and magical. It's just a sort of absolute, 'No, not going to do that."
3. This year there are so many people who are known more for their movies that are returning to series television -- is it a new era?
"I think that's been going on for a while. I think that trend has been going on for a while and I think the writing in television has upgraded, creating television that has phenomenal writing behind it. People really understand that television has more bandwidth, it can expand characters over time, and I think that feels good from an acting point of view. There isn't so much of a hierarchy over it. And I think studios are maybe making less films, now their slate isn't as wide. They don't really make 40 films a year, they're kind of making 15. So I think the industry in many ways is shifting and I think it's shifting alongside how we view and watch content."
"Witches of East End" will premiere on Lifetime Television on Oct. 6 at 10 p.m. ET. Watch a trailer below.
Reporting by Tony Cabrera, correspondent for the syndicated entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings). The show is produced by KABC Television near Los Angeles.