WGN’s ‘Salem’ Producers Talk ‘Exorcist’ Inspirations, Season 2 Structure and More From the Set
WGN’s witchy new drama ‘Salem‘ premiered this past Sunday with impressive ratings, though the pilot was only the beginning for producers Brannon Braga and David Von Ancken. We visited the set last month for the inside scoop and spoke with the cast on the sinful secrets of their characters, but what do Braga, Von Ancken and set designer Seth Reed have to say of their inspiration for ‘Salem,’ as well as what we can expect from its future?
Amid our time on the set, we had the opportunity to meet with ‘Salem’ creator Brannon Braga (‘24,’ ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation‘) for some insight into the origins of the series, which he described as “‘Wuthering Heights’ meets ‘The Exorcist,’ adding that he’d wanted to do something with horror since his teen years. Next up was ‘Hell on Wheels‘ director David Von Ancken confidently stating that ‘Salem”s bold design announced WGN’s original dramas to the world, also previewing the timeline its first season would unfold across, as well as how we might expect the series to continue in future seasons.
Finally, we sat down with set designer Seth Reed, who gave us a bit of insight into the extensive production challenges (over 25 original buildings and 13 interiors), giving a sense of history and artistic license to the world of ‘Salem.’
For those unfamiliar with the new period horror piece premiering on WGN America this Sunday at 10:00 P.M., ‘Salem’ stars Shane West (‘Nikita‘) as native son John Alden and Janet Montgomery (‘Made in Jersey’) as Mary Sibley, following the volatile world of 17th century Massachusetts as it explores the supernatural truth behind the town’s infamous witch trials. The series also stars ‘Arrow‘ vet Seth Gabel as town preacher Cotton Mather, fellow ‘Nikita’ alum Xander Berkley as Magistrate Hale, Ashley Madekwe as the mysterious Tituba, Tamzin Merchant as Hale’s daughter Anne, Elise Eberle as Mercy Lewis, and ‘Mob City‘ star Iddo Goldberg’ as Isaac Walton.
WGN America’s ‘Salem’ continues with an all-new episode this Sunday, but in the meantime, check out our interviews with Brannon Braga, David Von Ancken and Seth Reed above, and tell us in the comments what you think of the show’s witchy world!