Other cast have said there is so much to take away from Deadwater Fell but it’s hard to describe, can you tell us what it is about for you?
Deadwater Fell is a drama about the effect of a terrible tragedy on a close-knit community. However, as they try to come to terms with what has happened, and try to understand why, they discover that the nature of the tragedy is very different to what they initially thought. It puts everyone in turmoil, questioning their relationships and friendships, and looking back at events wondering what they could have done to change their course. The focus is on the Kendrick’s and the Campbell’s, people at the heart of their community, who thought they knew each other very well.
What was it about the drama that appealed to you?
I’m fascinated by people’s psychology and so as this story unfolded I was completely intrigued as to why characters behaved the way they did, why they went down that particular road. Another aspect of this drama highlights the difference that can exist between how people present themselves publicly and what is happening behind the scenes, whether we are ever really able to spot the clues necessary to prevent sad events from happening or whether that is only ever the job of hindsight. For the most part, people start relationships in a happy place and the story looks at where you can end up once those small, incremental changes have started to have an effect on your life.
Tell us about Kate. Who is she when we meet her as a mother, as a partner?
Kate Kendrick is a woman who looks like she has it all. A great relationship, three beautiful children, a valued teacher at the local primary school in a friendly community, the list goes on. She is a warm-hearted soul, a loving mother, a hard worker, finding time for keeping up with trends and having a social life. You wonder how she manages to do that. She must work very hard to keep up that standard of living and those expectations of herself. And after the terrible tragedy occurs you start to question why she presented so perfectly and how happy her life actually was.
What’s her relationship with Jess like?
Kate and Jess are the best of friends. Their lives are fully entwined, working together, socialising, enjoying time with all the children in their lives. Jess has been a great support to Kate when she suffered with depression after having her third child. And in turn Kate tries to be that rock for Jess as she tries to have children of her own. They have a great chemistry with one another, party hard and fire each other up. Through Jess we get to know a bit more of the Kate she used to be and perhaps could be again.
Across the series you learn more about the other relationship in Kate’s life, her one with Tom, is there anything you can kind of say about that?
When you meet them they seem to be a very happy, successful couple. They’ve had their challenges but they’re living well. Their early days together were full of romance and fun and now they are further down the road with three children to look after and all the challenges that that can bring. There are cracks in the relationship. Kate has suffered from depression particularly after the birth of their third child. But she was supported by Tom and the loving community around them. No one on the outside would think much more than that until the real nature of their relationship is thrown into question.
Kate is found dead in suspicious circumstances early in the first episode but due to the two timeframes we follow her story and get to know her relationship with the other characters across all four episodes. What was that like to film?
Daisy Coulam has done an amazing job, not just writing our story, but in the structure of that story telling. She plays with time so carefully, revealing the story in an incredible way. Kate’s story is told mostly in flashback so I had to put it back into a linear form so that I could know exactly how Kate was at any particular moment. It’s an idea you become acquainted with as an actor because you always film out of sequence. Playing Kate was a slightly lonely experience as she struggles to share how she is really feeling with anyone. Hindsight plays a wonderful part in this piece.
The show has been described as a why done it, rather than a who done it. Did you know the outcome from the start?
No. I knew Kate died and was initially very intrigued by the “who dunnit” question. But as I read on it was the psychology of the characters that really intrigued me and the questions around why they went down the roads they did.