Part of a converted seminary in the heart of Chelsea played home to Showtime’s “Penny Dreadful” premiere on Tuesday night.
The General Theological Seminary grounds, which take up an entire city block, proved an oddly appropriate locale to celebrate the network’s psychosexual gothic thriller starring Josh Hartnett, Eva Green and Timothy Dalton.
While Showtime Networks chairman-CEO Matthew Blank was eager to work with show’s creator John Logan and exec producer Sam Mendes, he admitted that the series wasn’t immediately greenlit.
“We spent a lot of time on this one,” Blank said. “It’s a real departure for us because it’s a genre piece and a period piece, but we know that there has been a lot of success in (both) genres and to work with John and Sam was a pretty unique opportunity.”
As for writing his first television series, Logan said it was “an incredibly steep learning curve.”
“I wanted to tell this story but I knew that it would take time to tell or at least more time than the usual two hour (movie) block,” the thrice Oscar-nominated screenwriter explained. “It took a different way of looking at dramatic time.”
The hourlong premiere was released on YouTube and Showtime’s website two weeks ago, which initially surprised star, Harry Treadaway a.k.a. Dr. Victor Frankenstein.
“It’s funny because you hide and shroud everything done and said (on set) in secrecy for months and then all the sudden it’s on the Internet, but I guess it’s a different environment these days,” Treadaway said.
For Blank the decision to release the first episode early on multi-platforms was an easy one.
“We wanted as many people as possible to have access to it and build interest around it.”
(Pictured: Eva Green and John Logan at the “Penny Dreadful” premiere in New York)