Watch the His Dark Materials and Lovecraft Country Panels from Virtual San Diego Comic-Con
HBO kicked off at SDCC with His Dark Materials executive producers Jane Tranter and Jack Thorne and cast Dafne Keen (Lyra), Ruth Wilson (Mrs. Coulter), Ariyon Bakare (Lord Boreal), Amir Wilson (Will Parry), Andrew Scott (John Parry), and Lin-Manuel Miranda (Lee Scoresby). Based on author Philip Pullman’s trilogy, His Dark Materials follows Lyra, a brave young woman from another world on a quest to find her kidnapped friend. In her pursuit, Lyra uncovers a sinister plot of a secret organization while encountering extraordinary beings and even more extraordinary, yet dangerous, secrets.
Season 2 (coming soon) dives into the second book in Pullman’s trilogy, Subtle Knife, which Jack Thorne called “a beautiful poem about trust.” Panelists hinted that this upcoming season is all about that trust: the kind that exists between the characters and the trust they have in themselves as they each embark on their own journeys. For characters like Lee Scorseby, that means always having Lyra’s back, even when he’s not with her. Season 2 also proves to be exciting for Ruth Wilson as we dive more into her character, Mrs. Coulter, and the circumstances that make her more than just a typical villain. Besides revealing some highly anticipated storylines, the cast shared a few equally important behind-the-scenes tidbits. The fact that Lin-Manuel Miranda and newcomer Andrew Scott bonded on set over their love for the Judge Judy show is definitely a future fan trivia question.
His Dark Materials
Saturday, July 25 at SDCC included a panel from HBO’s highly anticipated new drama series Lovecraft Country, which follows Atticus Black, his uncle George, and friend Letitia as they embark on a road trip across 1950s Jim Crow America in search of his missing father. The panel included stars Jurnee Smollett (Letitia “Leti” Lewis), Jonathan Majors (Atticus Freeman), Michael Kenneth Williams (Montrose Freeman), Aunjanue Ellis (Hippolyta Freeman), Wunmi Mosaku (Ruby Baptiste), Abbey Lee (Christina Braithwhite), and Courtney B. Vance (George Freeman).
Panelists praised the world set up by showrunner Misha Green, allowing the cast members to feel like family from day one. They noted that the story of Lovecraft Country is both very timely and unique; while it takes place in 1950s Jim Crow America, racial injustice is still something that Black people face every day. Cast members recounted their own experiences, particularly with law enforcement, in discussing the relevance of Lovecraft Country and the opportunity for the show to be a part of this conversation. But Lovecraft Country is not only a story about Black injustice and pain, they noted — it is also a story about Black love and joy. In the midst of the monsters (both human and otherwise), there are still moments for family, love, humor, and happiness. Lovecraft Country premieres on HBO on August 16.