Nine Perfect Strangers' Bobby Cannavale on the Series' Unconventional Approach to Wellness
Recent years have seen people going to great and sometimes bizarre lengths in hopes of unlocking their best self, whether that be through the destigmatization of traditional therapy or embracing experimental techniques to better yourself, often resulting in mixed reactions from the general public. The new Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers, based on the novel from the same name by author Liane Moriarty, focuses on the lengths nine "strangers" go to at a wellness spa in hopes of finding inner peace, and while star Bobby Cannavale is interested in tried-and-true therapeutic methods, we likely shouldn't count on him embracing any of the show's techniques in his personal life. New episodes of Nine Perfect Strangers debut on Hulu on Wednesdays.
"Objectively speaking, I'm into whatever floats your boat. I do think that the idea of people going and looking for help with their trauma and their grief is a great thing," Cannavale shared with ComicBook.com about his own outlook on emotional wellness. "Personally speaking, I've never been to a wellness spa, I don't like people touching me and I'm not big into group things, but that's just me. I was very interested in this idea of hallucinogenic therapy, I've been reading about it for a few years now, Michael Pollan has a great book that came out last year called 'How to Change Your Mind,' so I was on the path of reading about this when the script came my way and when the story came my way. It's a fascinating practice, really. The idea of trying to heal people mentally through psychotherapy and all kinds of help has been around for years but this idea of psychedelic therapy has also been experimented with since the 1960s and it's starting to really gather some steam right about now. So I think the timing of the show is really good for that."
Based on The New York Times bestselling book by author Liane Moriarty, Nine Perfect Strangers takes place at a boutique health-and-wellness resort that promises healing and transformation as nine stressed city dwellers try to get on a path to a better way of living. Watching over them during this 10-day retreat is the resort's director, Masha (Nicole Kidman), a woman on a mission to reinvigorate their tired minds and bodies. However, these nine "perfect" strangers have no idea what is about to hit them.
Despite being strangers, Cannavale's character quickly establishes a playfully antagonistic relationship with Melissa McCarthy's character, a dynamic which Cannavale credits to having worked with his co-star on previous projects.
"Melissa and I have known each other for a long time, this is our fourth time working together, and, at this point ... When we first met, we had a shorthand that we didn't know we were gonna have. We're contemporaries, we had a lot of the same references, we just get along," Cannavale pointed out. "I don't know how to explain it, really, and so, with this one, she's the one that told me about it. She's an incredibly prepared actor, I'm pretty prepared myself, and from working with her before, I knew we'd have opportunities to really play. We'd shoot the scene as it's [written] and we'd probably get it, and then we'd have a lot of fun shooting it three or four more times and hopefully getting something. She's tremendous."
New episodes of Nine Perfect Strangers debut on Hulu on Wednesdays.
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