As Emmy night quickly approaches, “The Handmaid’s Tale” crew consisting of creator Bruce Miller, executive producer Warren Littlefield, director Reed Morano, and cast members Elisabeth Moss, Samira Wiley, Ann Dowd, and Alexis Bledel gathered at the DGA Theatre to remind Emmy voters about Season 1 highlights and drop a few hints about Season 2.
The riveting drama’s portrayal of a dystopian future where women are valued only for their reproductive ability reverberated with viewers, especially as the current administration considers defunding Planned Parenthood. Miller commented, “It’s horrifying when it gets to be that close [to reality]. Did we think we’d be talking so much about women’s sovereignty over their own bodies now, in 2017?”
In Season 2, the tension increases. Moss said, “I read the outline and got full body chills. Give up trying to guess what happens.” Miller mentioned he talks to author Margaret Atwood frequently and “she’s more excited than any of you. She read the outlines and she’s been involved and influenced by what’s going on in the media right now.” Miller said the show’s urgency is felt in the writer’s room. “The writing staff is a smart, news junkie bunch. They are influenced by those events in the way they’re thinking about the show. It’s a political show. It’s about politics and people in power.”
As Season 1 ended with Offred/June (Moss) getting pregnant, motherhood is a prominent theme in Season 2. Miller said, “What does it mean to be a good mother? It’s about the way we mother the people in our lives.”
More Season 2 story points: the Colonies will be shown and as that’s where women are sent to be worked to death, Bledel posited, “I’m sure it will be another wretched and fascinating place, like Gilead.” More of Commander Waterford’s (Joseph Fiennes) world in Gilead will also be seen and Moira’s (Samira Wiley) story in Little America in Canada will continue. Asked what Moira is up to, Wiley smiled and said, “Hanging out, eating poutine.”
Miller credited the many women working on the show, saying, “One of my weaknesses is I’m a boy. We had to buttress our weaknesses.” On the hiring of Reed Morano to direct the first three episodes (she returns to direct in Season 2), Warren Littlefield said, “Reed gave us a 60-page lookbook of her visualization of what Bruce created. Reed had a badass attitude and we liked her creative vision.” The female creative force continues in Season 2 as the writer’s room is comprised mostly of women including Kira Snyder, Yaolin Chang, Dorothy Fortenberry, and Lynn Maxcy.
Season 2 is scheduled to debut in 2018 on Hulu.