The new Epix horror saga From is promising plenty of scares, but the biggest hook is the frighteningly great ensemble that’s going to have to face them. Harold Perrineau (Claws, Sons of Anarchy), Catalina Sandino Moreno (The Affair) and Eion Bailey (Once Upon A Time) headline the series, which centers around a small town that has big, fatal problems.
The horror genre has transformed significantly over the last few decades; audiences saw a rise in more graphic, shock horror films and more recently there’s been a step back to more psychological horror. With such a change in the idea of horror, what makes From legitimately scary?
“I think it has to do with how closely it resembles real life,” Eion suggested. “How many degrees away from current reality is it—where it can also firmly sit in science fiction, but equally resemble what’s outside your door? This show does a pretty good job of speaking to the times, yet also living, being, existing equally in an alternate reality.”
“Right now, we’re living in a time where there are literal things, like viruses, hunting us that could kill you at any point,” Harold added. “But without hitting the nail on the head, how can you make it relatable and yet still entertaining? The more relatable it is without being didactic, without telling you this is that [and] just giving you the chance to use your full imagination, I think those are the scariest shows.”
Did any of From‘s stars deliberately avoid finding out certain information to preserve those scares? Or were they left in the dark about their characters’ fates? “We were trying to ask questions to the writer [John Griffin] and the writer would never [tell us],” Catalina recalled. “He would joke, ‘Yeah, you’re going to die next episode,’ and you’re like ‘Why me? Why am I dying?’ So he will trick your mind into thinking that it’s your time to die.
“He will never just give you any kind of information—which was great because when you had the script in your hand, you will just be reading and understanding the story how he was building it,” she continued. “You understand why he didn’t tell you anything, because the surprise was bigger than if he told you a few days ago.”
With such a stellar cast, From also places a heavy emphasis on character development, so that the protagonists aren’t just cannon fodder for the antagonist and the actors have plenty with which to spread their wings. “The real fun of the show is it gets into detailed character work,” Eion said. “That’s what sets it apart from the horror genre, which is why in some ways I don’t even think of this as a horror show. I get that conceptually that it is sci-fi/horror, but it’s a character study equally and that’s a lot of the fun.
“For an audience, if the jump scares do it for you, then you’re going to get those. If the mystery and the Easter egg does it for you, those happen too,” he concluded. “But also if you want to examine what it is and see a mirror held up to your own life, you’re going to find someone who represents your experience—and it’s going to be pretty full, which is a real testament to the very detailed writing that John Griffin did and Jack Bender directed beautifully.”
From premieres tonight at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on Epix. New episodes will air Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Article content is (c)2020-2023 Brittany Frederick and may not be excerpted or reproduced without express written permission by the author. Follow me on Twitter at @BFTVTwtr and on Instagram at @BFTVGram.