“First Kill” stars Imani Lewis and Sarah Catherine Hook on queer vampires and the facility of illustration


Most individuals are acquainted with Romeo and Juliet. However in Netflix’s new collection “First Kill,” Juliet and Juliet is the place it is actually at. 

The collection, which premiered on Friday, is predicated on the brief story written by acclaimed fantasy writer V.E. Schwab. It focuses on Calliope (performed by Imani Lewis) and Juliette (Sarah Catherine Hook), two highschool ladies in love. The one downside? Juliette comes from a household of legendary vampires and Calliope comes from a household of legendary monster hunters. Each ladies are racing in opposition to a ticking clock to finish their first kills. What might probably go flawed?

Imani Lewis and Sarah Catherine Hook in a scene from
Imani Lewis as Calliope, left, and Sarah Catherine Hook as Juliette in an episode of the Netflix collection “First Kill.” 

Courtesy Of Netflix © 2022

The present leans into the ridiculousness of its premise, discovering pleasure within the stars’ constructing chemistry and doing a standup job of constructing out a few of its main facet characters, like Juliette’s feuding siblings and Calliope’s strong-willed mom. Outdoors of the plain familial tensions, the celebs each stated they appreciated the collection’ concentrate on not making their essential characters’ sexuality the forefront of their story. 

CBS Information spoke with the celebs of “First Kill” in regards to the course of of creating the present, and why they assume illustration is vital, even in campy YA dramas. 

CBS Information: How does it really feel that folks can now watch the present?

Sarah Catherine Hook: Excited! But additionally a little bit nerve-wracking. I have not actually finished something like this but, so I am not likely positive what to anticipate and I am hoping that it will simply be a number of enjoyable for all of us. And I’ll simply say I am so honored to be part of the present and to play Juliette. She’s actually close to and expensive to my coronary heart and I simply hope I get to proceed to step into her sneakers.

Imani Lewis: I have been excited. I am going by way of a spread of feelings as you may think about, however I am simply so excited. I am so excited for a way many individuals this present can transfer and the way many individuals are going to really feel seen after they watch the present and meet these characters and listen to their tales. It is simply so thrilling. 

A scene from “First Kill.”


What are a few of your favourite iconic vampire tales and collection? 

Sarah Catherine Hook: Effectively, I used to be an enormous “Vampire Diaries” fan. In highschool, faculty, that was a favourite present of mine. Clearly liked “Twilight.” “What We Do within the Shadows” is 100% one among my favourite films of all time. I even love the present. So I believe I’ve a pleasant number of vampire content material that I’ve devoured over time.

Imani Lewis: I positively grew up watching issues like “Blade,” so I form of manifested the entire monster hunter factor. I imply, I used to be watching it while you needed to pop it into the VCR at my grandparents’ home. Actually, I watched it too many occasions however I simply was obsessive about seeing somebody that appeared like me. He is so robust and well-trained and he is sporting this lengthy black leather-based trench and it simply was like — I used to be like, “Oh, I gotta be that.” I positively channeled that, for positive. I additionally grew up on Sabrina the Teenage Witch. 

A scene from
Imani Lewis as Calliope, left, and Sarah Catherine Hook as Juliette in an episode of the Netflix collection “First Kill.”

Courtesy Of Netflix © 2022

How would you describe your character? How did this impression what you dropped at the function?

Sarah Catherine Hook: Juliette is considerate. She is delicate and cares deeply for her family and friends. She’s very true to her morals and her beliefs.

I [wanted to bring] sensitivity and nuance and thoughtfulness. Within the description, she’s shy. And I am like, nicely, there are alternative ways to be a shy particular person. I did not need it to be the stereotypical shy, awkward woman. I wished her to have emotional depth, and simply assist folks perceive the place she’s coming from as this vampire who longs to be a human.

Imani Lewis: Calliope is wise, she’s calculated, she’s brave. She’s tenacious, she’s diligent and he or she’s disciplined. She’s born into this way of life and is hell-bent on proving her place in her household and proving that she is worthy of the standing and rating her household holds. And he or she’s extremely proud to be within the household and to be part of such a robust, educated guild.

However she’s additionally a teenage woman who would not have the identical normalcy that the common teenage woman has. So I needed to convey each that calculated facet similtaneously the facet of her that is confused and is being challenged by these feelings that she wasn’t anticipating to have. 

With out spoilers, do you’ve a favourite episode or storyline within the season? 

Sarah Catherine Hook:  That is in all probability the toughest query, really, as a result of I genuinely love each episode. However I actually love episode two. I believe visually, it is actually beautiful. It is an ideal episode after the primary one as a result of clearly the primary episode could be very  introductory. It is like OK, these are your characters, these are the stakes. However then episode two, we get into the juicy stuff. And I do not know, it simply holds a particular place in my coronary heart.

Imani Lewis: I at all times trip with this however I believe eight is my favourite episode. It will get so chaotic for thus many causes and it actually tugs on the heartstrings on the similar time. I believe that is the place we actually see these characters emote, like all of them. All of them undergo their very own journeys, and actually need to ask themselves, “What do I do now? Who am I now?”

Scene from the Netflix series
Imani Lewis as Calliope, left, and Sarah Catherine Hook as Juliette in an episode of the Netflix collection “First Kill.”

Courtesy of Netflix © 2022

If the present will get a second season, what would you wish to see? 

Sarah Catherine Hook: I’ve been saying that I would like Juliette to have form of an emo darkish facet. Her model of a darkish facet would in all probability be to emulate her sister and mother’s prototype, the place it is form of like scary Southern Barbie. I really feel like that might be actually attention-grabbing to see. I positively wish to see Juliette and Calliope battle it out a little bit bit. Clearly we would like them to remain collectively,  however we additionally need there to be some pressure for a little bit to maintain audiences entertained. Completely.

Imani Lewis: The place will we go from right here? There’s so many cliffhangers and so many free ends that we have to tie up. I wish to see the destiny of Cal and Jules. I might like to see the dynamics now as a result of, within the households, within the city, within the relationships, the muse is crumbling. 

How do you assume the present handles its essential characters and their queerness? 

Sarah Catherine Hook: I imply, there is not actually a present like this. The truth that Calliope and Juliette’s queerness is normalized within the present isn’t questioned. The truth that it is celebrated by way of the present says all of it. I hope that we’ll see extra reveals like this sooner or later. I am so honored to be part of a present that is form of paving the best way in that regard. 

Imani Lewis: I believe what I like greater than something is that their queerness isn’t the purpose of battle. That isn’t the place their wrestle lies and that is nicely understood.The larger combat is that they are alleged to kill one another you understand. And it simply retains on rolling. It isn’t this huge factor. 

Scene from the Netflix series
Sarah Catherine Hook as Juliette, left, and Imani Lewis as Calliope in an episode of the Netflix collection “First Kill.”

Courtesy Of Netflix © 2022

Why was your favourite half about engaged on “First Kill?” What do you hope audiences take away? 

Sarah Catherine Hook: We had the most effective crew. I simply liked everybody and I am nonetheless mates with just about all of them as a result of all of us  received very shut in a short time. And  I actually appreciated that that the illustration wasn’t simply on the present but in addition behind the scenes. We had crew members of shade and queer crew members and I simply liked each minute. 

Imani Lewis: Everybody within the forged and crew is unbelievable. These producers, these administrators, all phenomenal. Even the behind the scenes half that nobody actually will get to see — hair, make-up wardrobe.  I felt like I used to be capable of higher channel and higher perceive the communities that I used to be representing as a result of I used to be surrounded by them. 

For audiences, I would like folks to really feel seen and heard and revered and represented after they see this present and see these characters, and I would like them to really feel prefer it was finished with care. 

However most significantly, I would like folks to know that while you see adjustments in your self that appear unfamiliar, discover them, study them, perceive them and open your arms to what they may convey. I believe it is vital that we permit that form of house for change and for enchancment and for progress in order that we will be who we’re really alleged to be and never simply who we predict we’re. 

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