Interview: Teresa Palmer on Sky One's A Discovery of Witches.

In Sky One's huge new drama series A Discovery of Witches, Matthew’s struggling to control his Diana cravings and so takes himself off to his daemon pal Hamish’s place for some hunting By doing so, he leaves Diana to face up to her enemies alone. And that includes powerful witch Peter Knox (Owen Teale), who’s desperate for her to resummon the book. Diana doesn’t trust him. At all. And her hunch proves right when he sends another witch to scare her.

Meanwhile, there’s a beautiful vampire on the prowl in Venice. She’s long been obsessed with Matthew and her feelings are stirred when she spots a French tourist. What
happens next will land her in big trouble with her bloodsucking boss, Gerbert (Trevor Eve).

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Teresa Palmer (Diana) tells us more...

First of all, tell us what you admire about your character, Diana?

I’ve really fallen in love with Diana, she’s such a dynamic character. You really see her go on quite a beautiful journey throughout the show. She is a hyper-intellectual woman, an academic, a historian. She is very focused on that. Diana is an incredibly powerful witch, and when we first meet her she is running away from her true self. As the series progresses, you see her start to really embrace and embody her own spirit and she just grows so much. She becomes really proud of being a witch and proud
of having these powers. It’s such a beautiful message for everyone watching because it is all about celebrating who you are. That is what made me want to do the show.

 

Can you explain why Diana is a reluctant witch when we meet her in the first episode?

Diana has had a pretty traumatic childhood. She was raised by her aunties Sarah and Em because her parents were killed. They were both very powerful witches and her mother was descended from the Bridget Bishop, one of the first witches who was hung following the Salem Witch Trials, so her roots run very deep. Diana denies the powers associated with her bloodline because she was led to believe her parents were killed by ignorant humans who were afraid of witches. So, naturally, she is afraid
to show any signs of being a witch to the outside world. I think that’s why  she is so focused on her studies; it’s the one thing that keeps her grounded to a human-like quality and everything else is too scary for her.

 

What was it like stepping on to the set for the first time?

When I first walked into the Bodleian Library set it took my breath away. I really felt like I was truly there. The attention to detail that our designer James North has is
unlike anything I’ve ever seen on a production I have been on. Gosh, it makes my job so much easier because I really believe I am in the library. I remember trying to hush people when we were in there before I thought, ‘Oh yeah, this isn’t an actual library!’ It was just so easy to be in the skin of this person, and truly believe that I had spent every day in this library.

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Can you explain what ‘witch wind’ is?

For Diana, the ‘witch wind’ episode is one of the first moments she has a big shift in terms of her powers. Knox (Owen Teale) threatens and physically harms her friend Sean. All of a sudden, a rage comes from within her, and you realise that her emotions are manifesting themselves into this tornado like wind that she can’t control. She turns around and stares at Knox and the intensity of the anger transforms into wind coming from Diana’s body which propels Knox into the air. Poor Owen had to fly on wires!

What fun it was to portray someone who has that kind of power?

I have the best job in the world!

What was your favourite location to film in?

The house that is Matthew Clairmont’s home is this big beautiful place called The Old Lodge. They had peacocks walking around in the front yard and a big fireplace as you walked in. It was just kooky, and I completely fell in love with it. Very romantic and magical and  perfectly Matthew Clairmont.

 

How would you sum up A Discovery of Witches?

It is a fantasy love story, it’s dramatic, and funny, and adventurous. It’s enticing and sexy and inspiring. It’s many things. It’s an incredibly magical adventure with very
loveable characters.

 

A Discovery of Witches starts Friday 14 September 21.00 Sky One & NOW TV