Before the premiere of Season 2, Victoria star Jenna Coleman spoke with MASTERPIECE about the season’s upcoming drama, the production’s visit to the Scottish Highlands, the series finale, and what we might expect in Season 3. But in the interest of avoiding spoilers, we’re holding these goodies until later in the season. For now, check out Part 1 of our Q&A as Jenna Coleman shares behind-the-scenes insights about Victoria’s filming location, stars, and more.
MASTERPIECE: Much of Victoria is shot in an airport hangar in a remote location. Were there any particular challenges or surprises associated with that site?
COLEMAN: The obvious is airplanes, but they were surprisingly not really the problem…It was very cold! It had never been used as a set before, so I think for production, it threw up a lot of interesting challenges. Once, we couldn’t fit a baron of beef through the doors, to get it to set. Also, there’s a lot of birds and wildlife in the roof, so it’s a case of trying to film through lots of birds singing to each other, which can be very interesting for ADR [automated dialogue replacement]!
MASTERPIECE: What’s it like to work with your costar, the white stallion Almonzo.
COLEMAN: Almonzo! He likes to Spanish walk with me in between scenes. He has a short attention span, let’s say, and if he’s not getting the attention he feels like he deserves, he’ll make a scene. But he’s good, he makes me look like a very proficient rider, even though I am not. I just let him know that he’s the boss, and then he’s okay.
MASTERPIECE: Who’s a better rider, you or Rufus Sewell?
COLEMAN: Rufus Sewell is. I think Rufus has done so many period dramas over the years, so it was quite great—I wasn’t comfortable at first, but it was made a lot easier because Rufus was so confident on a horse. On my first couple of days on set, having never ridden before with cameras, and the set up, and cranes, and all of that, I could really follow his lead, which was great, as well as what the character was doing at the same time.
MASTERPIECE: What, if anything, would you bring back from the Victorian era to present day?
COLEMAN: Obviously, I love television, but what I’m really amazed by is how much they got done in a day. Like going for walks, or an hour painting, reading, writing, playing piano. And I’m really envious of just how industrious the Victorians really were. It kind of makes you look at your own behavior, “God, I just spent half an hour on Instagram!” I think we can kind of go back and take something from there.
While you wait for more from Jenna Coleman, check out MASTERPIECE’s exclusive Q&A with Rufus Sewell!