Ever Carradine has easily become one of the most dependable actors in Hollywood today. She has managed to build a resume that would be the envy of many in the industry.
Daughter of actor Robert Carradine and granddaughter of John Carradine, she has certainly forged her own successful path.
Ever, a graduate of Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon, has had memorable arcs in series such as Goliath, Major Crimes, Shameless, 24, Eureka and Once and Again to name a few. She can be seen on the hit Hulu series Handmaid’s Tale, playing the terrifying Naomi Putnam.
Along with Handmaid’s Tale, she’s also one of the stars of another Hulu series, the highly anticipated Runaways. The Marvel series, which is based on the comics of the same name, follows six Los Angeles teens who stumble onto a terrible secret regarding their parents.
We had the chance to chat with Ever about her character Janet Stein in the series, what it was like working with James Marsters and also what it means to be part of the Marvel universe!
Pop Culture Principle – What was it about the role of Janet Stein that made you decide to sign on to Runaways?
Ever Carradine – I think that the thing that really brought me into Runaways was Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage. I have respected them for so long and really wanted to work with them that that is what I jumped at. It’s funny, when I auditioned, they didn’t use the name Runaways, so I didn’t know the actual project I was auditioning for. Marvel is notoriously secret as they should be because sometimes things get out.
Pop Culture Principle – Did you read the comics in preparing for the role of Janet Stein in Runaways?
Ever Carradine – Once I got the role and understood exactly what it was based on, I did. We all ordered our comics on Amazon. I think Angel Parker read them all and I sort of thumbed through them and I found it too confusing to keep the storyline straight from the comic and what we were shooting from the pilot, it kind of confused me, so I just went with the words that Josh and Stephanie were writing and went from there.
Pop Culture Principle – One of the main differences between the comics and the series is that the parents play a bigger part in the series than in the comics. Would you agree?
Ever Carradine – I would agree with that and I think that Josh and Stephanie do that really well. They dive into the relationships between parents and teenage kids in such a deep way that it was very intriguing to me. I’ve talked to some friends who are diehard fans of the comics and I was worried they would be disappointed that it wasn’t letter for letter with the comics, but they were happy as well that the parents were being equally developed as the kids. It makes sense and I think that a well-rounded story is a well-told story.
Pop Culture Principle – What do you think is Janet’s role in the group Pride?
Ever Carradine – It’s so funny, I had lunch with friends today and they were both trying to tell me who they think Janet is over the course of the show and I told them they were both totally wrong. 😊 One thought that Janet was poisoning Victor and that’s why he is getting the headaches. The other person thought that Janet is the brains of the operation and she knows everything. The Pride only works if everybody is there right? Once you are in Pride, you can’t get out. She gets some fun Pride situations as the season progresses and I think that’s all I am allowed to say.
Pop Culture Principle – Would you consider the Pride and its members evil or villains?
Ever Carradine – I think that they do evil things, but I think that what the show is doing really well is showing that they entered the Pride with the best intentions and now are realizing what it means to be in the Pride and now they can’t get out. I think we saw that in episode four.
I have to give hats off to Patrick Rush who is our casting director. I think it’s a really well-cast show and even if the characters don’t have a lot to do, I feel like I understand who everybody is and we all felt that way from day one. Everybody showed up to work, really on their “A” game ready to work.
Pop Culture Principle – How would you describe the marriage between Janet and Victor?
Ever Carradine – Not the best one, right? Over the course of the season, you will get to see a little more of them. It’s a complicated relationship and Victor is a dark, angry guy and I think that Janet is just trying to be there for her son and that’s how I thought my way through it.
Pop Culture Principle – Would you consider Janet to be Chase’s rock and confident?
Ever Carradine – I would agree with that, I would. We are shooting this because of the Marvel secrecy which is fine and we were all happy with that, but it is hard to understand where your character is going if you aren’t allowed to know any of the future episodes. Something that came up a lot was that Janet is there for Victor because she has to stay in the Pride and also to protect and be there for her son.
Pop Culture Principle – We find out that Janet is having an affair with Pride member Robert Minoru? Will we see this relationship cause issues for both as the season continues?
Ever Carradine – Yes. I think it is a really interesting thing to look at two people who are stuck in the Pride, having an affair and having to keep a face on for their spouses. They thought that was the last Pride meeting for the year, but then Destiny didn’t die that way, so they have to do another sacrifice and the Pride is having to continue to get together which leaves them in a little bit of a pickle.
Pop Culture Principle – Runaways seems to be an emotionally grounded series when it comes to the relationships with the parents and their children. Would you agree?
Ever Carradine – Absolutely. That is what Josh and Stephanie wanted and that’s what Marvel wanted as well and that’s how we all as actors approached it. We tried to approach them as people and break down a character in any other way that we would have and not think about them as Marvel or superheroes, but really just as parents and friends. The kids are very well-rounded individuals and you can really tell who they are pretty quickly.
Pop Culture Principle – In one of the recent episodes, we find out that their sacrifice Destiny didn’t initially die and washes up on the beach days later. How will this affect the dynamic of the group this season?
Ever Carradine – It’s interesting for me to watch the pilot again. When we were shooting the Pride meeting in the pilot, we hadn’t put on the red robes yet and we didn’t totally understand the darkness of it. As the series progressed and we were in the robes and we understood the murder box which we hadn’t seen yet. The Pride meetings are not celebratory. They are something that they dread doing once a year it seems like and the stakes are high now because we need another sacrifice quickly.
Pop Culture Principle – What have you enjoyed most about being part of Runaways?
Ever Carradine – It’s going to sound totally hokey, but I totally mean it. There are sixteen series regulars on the show and they are all awesome. I feel like I’ve made fifteen new friends and it’s really fun to go to work with people that you both respect their work, but also enjoy having lunch with. That surprises me because sometimes there is one bad apple or one grumpy one or one diva and really, they’ve managed to assemble a group of wonderful people who happened to be very talented. Also, I love working with Josh and Stephanie and the wardrobe department is amazing.
Pop Culture Principle – You and James Marsters have such great chemistry onscreen together. What is it like working with him?
Ever Carradine – He’s so good! He’s very intense and watching the show on set is intense and it must be even more intense watching him on television. He is amazing to watch.
Pop Culture Principle – How does it feel to be part of the Marvel Universe?
Ever Carradine – It’s incredible! When I found out I got the job, Josh Schwartz called with Jeph Loeb and Jeph said that I’m going to say the three most important words you are going to hear in a long time, “Welcome to Marvel.” Even just saying it now, I get goosebumps all over my entire body and it’s very exciting.
Pop Culture Principle – What can fans look forward to with the first season of Runaways?
Ever Carradine – I’m trying to think what I can say without giving anything away! 😊 I think that fans who have read the comic books will not be disappointed. Also, it’s going to sound trite, but there is some good action stuff awaiting and they will also continue to show some flashbacks so that you understand how everyone got where they are today. As an actor, those are fun to read because it fills in some holes for the character.
A big thank you to Ever Carradine for sitting down and chatting with us. You can catch new episodes of Runaways exclusively on Hulu. If you would like to keep up to date with all of Ever’s current news and projects, you can follow her on Twitter @evercarradine and on Instagram @officialevercarradine.
**Main photo courtesy of Manfred Baumann**
**All Runaways photos courtesy of Paul Sarkis/Hulu**