(KGET) — Amanda Collin had a lot of questions on the first day she showed up for filming for the new HBO Max 10-episode series “Raised by Wolves.” She had been cast to play Mother, one of two androids who have been given the task of raising human children on a mysterious virgin planet.
The Danish actress and her co-star Abubakar Salim – who plays Father, the other android – wanted to know such things as how an android would talk, relate to each other or do something as simple as walk. They came up with a very logical solution.
“We just walked. And so little by little, stuff came along,” Collin says. “I can hear things and sense things. Then you start to incorporate the whole animalistic kind of way of moving, and it was a great joy to just keep discovering the senses of an android, if that makes sense.”
The elements they used helped create the central characters in the tale of a burgeoning colony of humans that threatens to be torn apart by religious differences. The logical-thinking androids learn that controlling the beliefs of humans can be a treacherous and extremely difficult task.
Salim never saw the questions the actors had as hurdles but as building blocks to playing the roles to the best of their abilities. Both actors appreciated how the directors gave them room to experiment and play while finding the best way to become the characters.
“It felt like a space where of course there was a lot riding on it, but there was space to make mistakes, or to discover, or to learn because these two androids are learning also,” Salim says. “I think that was what was really fun to dive into. I mean you rarely get the chance to play in a world like that on set.
“We both were like ‘We don’t know what we’re doing.’ So it just all kind of naturally came through, when it came to the idea of finding the way that we move. And I think because of that safety, we were able to be bold about it.”
It helped that the first two episodes of “Raised by Wolves” was directed by Ridley Scott who is also an executive producer on the series. The project for HBO Max marks the television series directorial debut for Scott who is best known for directing big feature films such as “Alien,” “Blade Runner,” “Thelma & Louise” and “Gladiator.”
Collin called working with Scott a gift.
“You trust him 100 percent. Like Abu said, you’re bold, and then when you’re not bold you’re like, ‘Do you want my hand like this, or like this?’ And then he has the answer,” Collin says. “He takes responsibility completely for you and your character and everything that’s going on, and it has been so wonderful.”
“Raised by Wolves” writer/creator Aaron Guzikowski explains Scott became connected with the production after his script was submitted to the director’s production company. Scott liked the script so much that he had started drawing pictures of how the project should look before the two even met.
Scott came to the project with some experience dealing with androids as with his feature films “Blade Runner” and “Alien.” Guzikowski sees an influence of Scott’s past work on the new series.
“I think there’s a thematic connection, perhaps not a direct connection in terms of the mythology. But I think this is of Ridley Scott,” Guikowski says. “He directed the first two episodes. He was intimately involved in the entire production. So there was a lot of sort of exchange of DNA between a lot of the mythologies that Ridley has established in the past and this new story.
“But I think a lot of the rules that apply to these androids and a lot of the questions that they bring up, are similar to going as far back to Ash from ‘Alien’ in 1977. There are some similarities there. But not directly, I wouldn’t say this is part of a direct mythology-type connection.”
That connection can be seen when “Raised by Wolves” debuts on the streaming service of HBO Max on Sept. 3.