Jessica Parker Kennedy Talks The Secret Circle

“It’s been amazing,” said Jessica Parker Kennedy about the reaction from fans about her show The Secret Circle. Starring as Melissa Glaser in the supernatural series, she tackled an assortment of questions at the London MCM Expo and revealed what it was like being possessed by a demon, practicing magic when she was in her teens and how she would survive a zombie apocalypse!

The series is produced by Kevin Williamson and follows teenager Cassie Blake. After she loses her mother, Amelia, in what appears to be an accident, Cassie goes to the small town of Chance Harbor, Washington, to live with her grandmother Jane. As Cassie starts high school, weird things start to happen after she meets Adam, his sweet girlfriend Diana, mysterious loner Nick, feisty Faye and her friend Melissa. They eventually explain that they are all descended from powerful witches, and that they’ve been waiting for Cassie to join them.

Based L.J. Smith’s novels, Parker Kennedy’s character Melissa doesn’t appear in the books and is more an amalgamation of other characters created for the TV series. “I knew I was gonna get the part,” she said when it came to auditioning for the character, feeling confident that she’d win the role, saying, “I felt like I was meant to play her!”

As of writing, the show is currently up to episode six here in the UK, and eight in the US. Parker Kennedy is not quite sure how her character arc is going to play out, but believes that she’s “finding her footing. There’s a lot of development with her and Faye, with their friendship in a few episodes. I think Melissa’s gonna find out how to stand out and stand up on her own two feet.”

Her favourite moment in the series so far is episode five, ‘Slither’, which she describes as, “the funnest episode ever,” given that her character Melissa becomes possessed by a demon. “Our director Liz Friedlander, she just said, ‘Do whatever you want, be as ugly as you wanna be and as weird as you wanna be!’ So it was an unbelievable amount of fun!” In that particular episode, she also enjoyed working with her on-screen boyfriend Louis Hunter, who plays Nick. “All the stuff that we did when I was possessed, and he was trying to reach to me, everything felt surprisingly so real in the moment.”

Many have highlighted how similar the series is to the movie The Craft, which also deals with witches in high school, and Parker Kennedy admits to being “obsessed with it” when it came out. “Me and my girlfriends in junior high school would get together, like on our lunch hours, and do magic together, and on weekends have rituals. We’d drink these concoctions that we would make!”

When asked if there was anyone she would like to work with, she brought up the possibility of crossovers, with another popular TV series. “I think it would be fun to do some crossover episodes with Teen Wolf. I love Dylan [O’Brien]’s character. I think it would be good to have him on the show.”

She appeared to be incredibly thankful to the fans, saying, “I really appreciate so, so, so much that people are watching. It seems to be getting bigger and bigger around the world, and I hope it grows because that would mean a lot more fans and we wouldn’t have a show without you guys.” It was when shooting the eighth episode of The Secret Circle that she and the rest of the cast found out that it was going to be a full season, and they were clearly pleased with the news. “There are so many struggling actors and it’s so nice to know that I have a job, that we can keep doing this for the fans. Really we thank you guys so much because you guys are the reason why we’re finishing the season, so we’re really grateful for it.” 

Before wrapping up, she was asked what weapon she would use and which co-star she would use as bait should she find herself in the middle of a zombie apocalypse on The Secret Circle! “I would use Thomas Dekker as bait,” she said of her co-star, who plays Adam. “He’s very flashy and he would attract a lot of zombies!” When it came to a weapon she seemed settled on, “one hell of a big knife,” only to quickly change her mind and say, “or a bow and arrow,” citing its use in The Walking Dead as the reason why. “I love The Walking Dead… it’s really cool!”

The Secret Circle is broadcast in the UK on Sky Living, every Wednesday at 8pm, with Jessica Parker Kennedy also appearing in the films In Time, which is out now, and 50/50, released on November 25th.

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