Filmmaker Mike Flanagan has worked with a number of impressive performers over the years, many of which he has collaborated with on multiple occasions, building himself a roster of veterans he knows he can always rely on to bring one of his stories to life. For his latest Netflix series, Midnight Mass, Flanagan not only enlisted the help of former collaborators, like Annabeth Gish, but also brought along some new recruits, like Kristin Lehman. The stars of the series recently detailed what made working with him so rewarding and the unique pieces they occupied in the new narrative. Midnight Mass debuts on Netflix on September 24th.
"This is actually my third project with Mike, because I did a film called 'Before I Wake' with him way back in the day," Gish explained to ComicBook.com. "I think he is a really magnificent writer who brings authentic characters to life with an elevated sense of drama. You're still rooted in reality, it just is very easy to play his characters because they're written so authentically."
The new series tells the tale of a small, isolated island community whose existing divisions are amplified by the return of a disgraced young man (Zach Gilford) and the arrival of a charismatic priest (Hamish Linklater). When Father Paul's appearance on Crockett Island coincides with unexplained and seemingly miraculous events, a renewed religious fervor takes hold of the community -- but do these miracles come at a price?
Lehman would go on to recall the trust she had not only in Flanagan, but also in the company he keeps, when it came to how the unique blend of humor and drama would be realized.
"We have a prep time where we're all getting ready for our characters and so on. I knew once I asked a few people who'd worked with him before what their experience was and the reviews were glowing, and then I looked at who his repertory company is that he created," Lehman confirmed of how she knew she could trust the ambitious endeavor would pay off. "Obviously, I was honored and overwhelmed at the concept of joining. I never once questioned whether or not it would be executable. Mike is also incredibly confident, but in the best way, with lots of humility and lots of heart, and so you just know when you've found your tribe. There's something that just resonates, you just know."
Gish couldn't help but express her admiration for Lehman, noting, "Just in listening to you today, Kristin, being a newcomer to the universe, Mike entrusted you with a very crucial and large piece of Midnight Mass, because you're such a bastion of heart and devout faith, but mothering. It's the quintessential, maternal essence. And I think that's such a compliment to you that he entrusted you with that."
Lehman pointed out, "I'm bashful, that's very kind. I did feel the weight of that. I did think, 'Oh, I've got to bring it.' Because it's necessary to have the throughline of that kind of purity, even if it's adorned with all kinds of denial. The necessity of showing someone who is of service to other people, I think is really necessary. At least, I got a lot out of it, which is a real gift."
Midnight Mass debuts on Netflix on September 24th.
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