VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: Wrenn Schmidt & Jodi Balfour Explain Why Space-Race Drama ‘For All Mankind’ Is So Relevant Now
If you have ever wondered how the space race would have unfolded had the United States and the Soviet Union made different decisions regarding manned missions to the Moon, then For All Mankind is the show for you. The series rewrites history and imagines what would have happened if Russia had won the space race.
The alternate history/science fiction miniseries is set to premiere on Apple TV+ on Nov. 1 and stars Joel Kinnaman and Shantel VanSanten. Two other actors from the show, Wrenn Schmidt and Jodi Balfour, opened up about the series in an exclusive interview at New York Comic-Con earlier this month.
Balfour and Schmidt respectively play Ellen Waverly, one of the first female NASA astronauts in the world of the show, and Margo Madison, the first woman in mission control.
“We see that one of the knock-on effects is that some social progress happens earlier than it does in our real timeline,” said Balfour before citing the historical firsts accomplished by the fictional female characters on the show.
Schmidt revealed one of her favorite scenes takes place in the first episode and involves her character stepping out of line to assert herself before her male colleagues.
“Margo is a woman who is usually the smartest person in the room, but because she’s a woman she’s not really respected in the same way that all of the men are and she’s really bad at staying in her own lane,” said Schmidt. “So there’s a great scene where Margo really steps in it.”
Meanwhile, Balfour confessed she is a “sucker” for all the “relationship drama” scenes before teasing that a sequence that takes place in a car in the fourth episode was one of her favorites to shoot.
The actresses also said For All Mankind somewhat reflects the political tensions between the U.S. and Russia, although not to a full extent or intentionally.
“I definitely felt like I had a different kind of touchstone than I thought I might have five years ago,” said Schmidt. “But it does feel like Russia is more threatening [now than before,],” she added before saying she relied on current news more so than the show to give her an idea of how much the relationship between the two countries has changed.