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Hypable is back with more in our series of Lizzie Bennet Diaries interviews – this time with star Ashley Clements who plays Lizzie Bennet herself.

It has been a controversial week in The Lizzie Bennet Diaries fandom, but before it all went down Hypable writer Marama Whyte had the chance to ask Ashley Clements, the star of the show, all about it. Hear Ashley discuss her her experiences on The LBD and her thoughts on this weeks developments in this exclusive interview.

Make sure to also read part 1 and part 2 of our interview with Mary Kate Wiles, who plays Lydia Bennet on The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.

Hypable’s exclusive interview with Ashley Clements

Hypable: When did you first audition?

Ashley Clements: My first audition was in December of 2011 actually, which is crazy to say, because that was over a year ago. I went in for my first audition, and that was with Bernie [Su, head writer, director, executive producer and co-creator] and Jenni [Powell, producer], and thought that that went well, they seemed to like me. Then I didn’t hear from them for a month, so I kind of forgot about it.

Then they had callbacks in January and they brought in all the potential Lizzies. There were three girls there for Lizzie and a couple for Lydia and there were six Janes, I want to say, and three or four Charlottes – and I was there for four hours and I read with all of them. So I met everyone before anyone was cast, and saw who could do what. And I was so pleased with who ended up getting the parts, like “Yes, you chose well, this is great – that’s who I would have picked, excellent.”

Was the Lizzie that you originally read very different from how she has developed? Obviously the writing would now mimic certain things in your voice or mannerisms that you have developed, but what about other things?

A part of me says no, but I just saw a part of the first episode the other day and I was like, “Who’s that? What’s happened?” because I’m on this journey with Lizzie and so much has changed for her over the last year and it’s funny to look back. It’s a little bit like opening up a diary – well these are called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries – but I personally grew up keeping real diaries, on paper, and when I would look at that I would be like, “Oh gosh, this is such a weird feeling.” And I had that as Lizzie, seeing the beginning again, going like, “Oh, we’ve come so far Lizzie. We’ve come so far.”

The original sides, well some of that text is not quite verbatim, but pretty close in early episodes. They had already written up to, I want to say 16 episodes or so, when we started. So some of those audition sides were from much later, were from episode 14 or something. They did, when we all got the parts, work to alter the voices of the characters – not dramatically, but just to shape with us.

Bernie and I would always have a read through – well, we still do – of the whole script, just him and I, just to make sentences and words seem more like they would come out of my mouth. Especially because now there’s six writers on staff too, so it’s also a matter of bringing all of those different voices in and making them sound like one person.

But the more we go on, the less stuff like that changes, the less I ask for little word changes and things, because everyone really is very much on the same page with who Lizzie is, and how Lizzie talks, and a lot of that has been adopted from me, from Ashley. Not to say that Lizzie and I are the same, or that she talks exactly like I do, but we have a lot in common and she is certainly written for me at this point. That’s been true since I got the part.

How would you describe your Lizzie?

I’ve been asked before what my favourite thing about Lizzie is, and honestly it is that she is flawed. It’s interesting, a lot of articles have been written about the show at this point, which is lovely, and a lot of them really point out she is very flawed and sometimes hard to like.

And I love that. I love that because she is a much more interesting character to play, to play someone who is struggling with things, and trying to figure things out, and is a good person, but somebody who like all real people, makes mistakes. I think she is admirable in that she is willing to learn from hers, which is certainly something that I always strive to do as well. So how would I describe her? I would describe her as loveably flawed, that’s my quick answer.

It’s a very good one.

But she’s also intelligent and witty and passionate, so passionate, and very loyal to the people that she cares about, and very well intentioned.

That’s true. In this version, not only of Lizzie but of all of your characters, they are less romanticized – probably because you have hours and hours to spend developing them.

We have hours and hours, and also, it’s a modern setting. Women in Jane Austen’s time used their free time to sew and paint and draw and read, and there was no internet, and there was a much smaller group of people that you came into contact with in your life. A modern setting changes so many of those things. They would absolutely have effects on personality I think, just in terms of: one’s temperament remains the same, but the ways that comes out and is seen is different when you have all this other stuff going on.

Yeah, it’s about context.

Yes, very much so.

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Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15 brings the L.M.D. storyline to a truly wild end. Here’s what to expect from “Self Control”!

You don’t know what’s coming

Yeah, there’s a synopsis for “Self Control” — “Suspicion turns to paranoia when the team doesn’t know who can be trusted as more LMDs infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D.” But that’s the equivalent of saying that Iron Man is about a goateed man who can fly.

Sure, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15 answers a lot of questions about who is and who isn’t a robot. More profoundly though, the episode goes in for a final knead and punch of the ideas that have been floating around all season.

Read full article

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15 brings the L.M.D. storyline to a truly wild end. Here’s what to expect from “Self Control”!

You don’t know what’s coming

Yeah, there’s a synopsis for “Self Control” — “Suspicion turns to paranoia when the team doesn’t know who can be trusted as more LMDs infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D.” But that’s the equivalent of saying that Iron Man is about a goateed man who can fly.

Sure, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15 answers a lot of questions about who is and who isn’t a robot. More profoundly though, the episode goes in for a final knead and punch of the ideas that have been floating around all season.

Free will and humanity. Sacrifice and love. The nature of reality — and even of life itself. Beneath the plot, surprises, and pain, that’s what’s really going on in the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. spring finale.

That, and the characters who get caught in the middle.

Jed Whedon is Not. Playing. Around.

Executive producer and showrunner Jed Whedon is the man behind the pen and the camera in “Self Control,” and he’s there for a reason. Whedon’s first try at the director’s chair on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is operatic, incisive, and perpetually gut-clenching.

Yes, there are lovely and disturbing vistas, an artistry that comes from a deliberate and careful eye. But more important is the unshakable Whedon impulse that animates Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15, that builds through the episode like a cresting tide.

You know that unmistakable sense that someone is laughing behind the scenes? Yeah. That’s why Jed Whedon is here.

What’s next?

Well, that’s a very good question. “Self Control” leaves us with a few razor-like possibilities, all of which lead down spiky corridors of questions. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15 is here to leave us thirsty for the season’s final seven episodes, and that’s exactly what it does.

Oh, and to answer your next question…

Cliffhanger?

Uh, yes. Cliffhanger.

Oh boy, cliffhanger.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 4×15, “Self Control,” airs Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 10:00 p.m. on ABC.

What are your top theories for ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ 4×15?

Have President’s Day off? Here are some movies, TV shows, and soundtracks with which to celebrate President’s Day.

‘Hamilton’


Even if you were somehow lucky enough to have already seen the musical, you might as well celebrate today with another listen to the soundtrack. In case you have been living under a rock, Hamilton is a hip-hop, rap, musical about Alexander Hamilton. Yes, Hamilton never became president, but the musical does include multiple would-be presidents. Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and even birthday boy himself George Washington are heavily featured in Hamilton. Based on the biography by Ron Chernow, you can get a history lesson while you listen to great music.

Read full article

Have President’s Day off? Here are some movies, TV shows, and soundtracks with which to celebrate President’s Day.

‘Hamilton’


Even if you were somehow lucky enough to have already seen the musical, you might as well celebrate today with another listen to the soundtrack. In case you have been living under a rock, Hamilton is a hip-hop, rap, musical about Alexander Hamilton. Yes, Hamilton never became president, but the musical does include multiple would-be presidents. Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and even birthday boy himself George Washington are heavily featured in Hamilton. Based on the biography by Ron Chernow, you can get a history lesson while you listen to great music.

‘Liberty’s Kids’


Liberty’s Kids aired in the early 2000s on PBS. Liberty’s Kids follows three teenagers from varying backgrounds throughout the American Revolution, mentored by Benjamin Franklin. It is geared for children but is still pretty enjoyable for adults. In each episode, the teenagers encounter a significant person or event from the revolution, giving a concise and entertaining history lesson. The show features many important figures throughout the revolution, showing even more presidents than in Hamilton. As one can imagine, Washington is among these.

‘Lincoln’


Lincoln is a 2012, Oscar nominated movie, directed by Steven Spielberg based on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s biography of Abraham Lincoln, Team of Rivals. Instead of a biopic of Lincoln’s entire life, Lincoln is specifically about his passing of the 13th amendment. Essentially directed between each of his science fiction blockbusters, Spielberg also made many significant historical movies, Lincoln among them. Lincoln not only shows his power as a president, but also humanizes him through an Oscar winning performance by Daniel Day-Lewis.

‘1776’


Hamilton is not the first musical about American history. Thankfully, though, because this way there are other options, one of which is 1776. Even more conveniently, the musical 1776 was adapted into a movie in the early 1970s. Heavily implied by its name, 1776 is about the signing of the Declaration of Independence. 1776 definitely has a more classical musical theater vibe than Hamilton. The strange combination of American history and musical theater allows for a humorous yet educational experience. However, as reflective of the history of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Washington is not a character in the musical; yet, it obviously includes many other significant historical figures.

‘The West Wing’ or ‘The American President’


Unlike the other items on this list, these two are about fictional presidents. But it would be nice if they were real. Of the many politically charged movies and television shows by Aaron Sorkin, these two are specifically about presidents. If you have the day off and want to attempt to binge watch seven seasons, then you may want to check out The West Wing. The West Wing follows President Bartlet and his staff and advisors during their time in the White House. If you want a movie to help you transition between Valentine’s Day and President’s Day then The American President is worth watching. It is a romantic comedy about President Shepherd, who falls in love with a lobbyist.

How else will you celebrate President’s Day?

The first two cast members for Disney’s live-action adaptation of The Lion King have been announced by director Jon Favreau.

James Earl Jones, who voiced Mufasa in the animated movie in the ’90s, is returning as the character in the live-action adaptation. Interesting!

Meanwhile, Donald Glover — who will co-star in this summer’s Spider-Man: Homecoming for Disney and Marvel — will play Adult Simba.

Read full article

The first two cast members for Disney’s live-action adaptation of The Lion King have been announced by director Jon Favreau.

James Earl Jones, who voiced Mufasa in the animated movie in the ’90s, is returning as the character in the live-action adaptation. Interesting!

Meanwhile, Donald Glover — who will co-star in this summer’s Spider-Man: Homecoming for Disney and Marvel — will play Adult Simba.

Favreau tweeted the news Friday evening:

According to a statement from Disney, The Lion King “will build on the groundbreaking technology used in The Jungle Book to bring the story of Simba to photorealistic life.”

A release date for the film hasn’t been set. Favreau also helmed the live-action Jungle Book for the studio.

So far casting is off to a great start!