Sophie Nélisse in “Yellowjackets”: living the dream of playing a nightmare

Sophie N&elisse in «Yellowjackets

Sophie Nélisse plays Shauna in Yellowjackets

On the eve of the start of the second season of Yellowjackets, we discuss successes, expectations and challenges with one of its main heads of poster, the Quebecer Sophie Nélisse. 

The American TV series was the surprise of the fall of 2021, garnering rave reviews and winning several Emmy nominations. We follow a women's soccer team whose plane crashes in the middle of the forest, forcing the players to spend long months with each other in survival mode. At the same time, we find them in adulthood, while they remain haunted by their experience and the actions they had to do to survive.  

In interview with Métro , Sophie Nélisse warns that this new season, which will begin March 24 on Crave for Canadian audiences, will be even darker than the first. “The girls divide into clans, turn against each other. It's winter, the stakes are higher, there's less to eat. Our survival instincts and our animal side come out. » 

Sophie Nélisse in «Yellowjackets”: Living the Dream of Playing a Nightmare

Photo: Showtime/Crave

The Pressure For Success 

Supernatural, horror, murder, psychotic delirium, possible cannibalism: there is no denying that the artisans of the first season of Yellowjackets were taking risks. 

“For the first season, we didn't know how much people were going to get into horror and the supernatural, so we had the reflex to want to keep it realistic as much as possible,” says Sophie Nélisse. But there, for the second season, seeing how people appreciated this dimension, we are less complexed and we can go all out. »

But this new season also comes with greater pressure for the 22-year-old actress, who feels a certain stress at the idea of ​​having to keep up, as if she owes the public something. This pressure is all the heavier for her as she believes that the Quebec public tends to put on a pedestal the stars from here who are breaking through internationally.  

Sophie Nélisse prefer to lower expectations. “It’s all a bit of luck… I may be going to crash at some point, ”says the one that we also saw in the film The Book Thief.  

The actress appreciates this success the time it passes. “Coming from a background where budgets are limited makes me appreciate the means at our disposal and that makes me all the more grateful for my experience. The dressing rooms, the food, the team, the size of the project, all that makes me pinch myself every day, while other girls take it for granted,” she says. 

This does not prevent her from admiring the talent of her fellow actresses and learning from them to enrich her own acting. “There are some who have a style of acting that is so different from mine. For example, they really know how to use space, which is not at all my strength. As soon as I have no pockets, I don't know where to put my hands. »  

Sophie Nélisse in «Yellowjackets”: living the dream of playing a nightmare

Photo: Showtime/Crave

Challenge Bundle 

The second season of Yellowjackets, which takes place in winter, involved a few different technical challenges than the first season, which was difficult to do, since the girls had to shoot in the woods, sometimes in the rain, often all dirty.  

This new season was instead shot in the studio, with the girls having to wear several layers of clothing and sit around a fire pretending to shiver from the cold. In fact, they died of heat. “The cold is a very difficult feeling to recreate”, understood Sophie Nélisse. 

In addition, the fact of being so many in each scene meant that the shooting been very long. “We had to cover all the girls, have plans for everyone. You could spend seven hours on a stage. When you just have one line to say, having to wait so long makes you lose your naturalness. »

That the series was shot chronologically, however, facilitated immersion. The actresses receive the scripts for the episodes one at a time.  

“It helps to keep our feet in our character. He does not know where he is going and neither do I, ”says the actress. However, the experience is different for actresses playing the characters later in life, “since they have to convey all the trauma without knowing exactly what happened.” 

What does the future hold? 

The broadcast of the second season of Yellowjackets has not even started yet that the third has already been confirmed. Sophie Nélisse is delighted, but she would not want the series to stretch unnecessarily.  

“I like to play different characters. I'm a bit tired of making dramas, she admits. I would love to do comedy. It must be fun, but difficult to make people laugh. It would take me out of my comfort zone. Acting in something like The White Lotus would be my dream. Anything but horror really. I can't stop screaming and bawling,” laughs the actress. > by Louise Archambault, a film that tells the story of a Polish nurse who saved Jewish people during the Second World War.  

The second season of Yellowjackets premieres March 24 on Crave and Showtime.  

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