Midwich Cuckoos: Keeley Hawes and Synnøve Karlsen reveal all about the chilling horror adaptation

We speak to The Midwich Cuckoos cast about the chilling new drama, adapting the classic John Wyndham book for a 21st century audience, and their own fears and phobias.

Published: 1 June 2022 - 4.25pm
Keeley Hawes in The Midwich Cuckoos 2022
Stream every episode of The Midwich Cuckoos on Sky Max with NOW from Thursday, 2 June.

The small English commuter town of Midwich looks like any other affluent English town – but something terrifying is coming.

Based on the classic John Wyndham science fiction novel - which was previously adapted for the big screen as The Village of the Damned – The Midwich Cuckoos is an eerie and thrilling drama series that takes you on a chilling and strange journey.

Keeley Hawes (Bodyguard, Line of Duty, The Durrells) and Synnøve Karlsen (Clique, Last Night in Soho) play mother and daughter Dr Susannah Zellaby and Cassie, two characters at the heart of the dark mystery.

BT TV caught up with the duo to get some secrets from the set of The Midwich Cuckoos.

Hawes said she was excited to work on the series because it was “fantastic fun and really chilling”.

She compared the series to the original Haunting of Hill House.

“I found it absolutely terrifying and it’s a bit like Midwich,” said Hawes.

“It’s nuanced horror, you don’t really see anything. It’s more about where your imagination takes you as to what this frightening thing could be… and I remember not being able to leave the sofa having seen that. Terrifying.”

Synnøve Karlsen said that the updates on the original story to focus more on the female characters was required for a 2022 TV series.

“It’s a timeless story as a woman because throughout history, as a woman, your body has been used or objectified in ways beyond your control,” she said.

“Doing that in a modern way with a story led by a woman, it feels like the perfect time to do that.”

Keeley Hawes in The Midwich Cuckoos - First look

At the centre of the Midwich mystery are some terrifying children and Hawes was full of praise for the child stars in the cast.

“They had a lot to deal with,” she said. “Wigs, makeup, tiny sets of false teeth.”

“The way they would jump into character, they would be in the middle of a TikTok dance and then jump straight into action.”

Stream every episode of The Midwich Cuckoos on Sky Max with NOW from Thursday, 2 June.

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