Alexa Davalos Web — celebrating over 10 years online!the original and largest alexa davalos site; since 2005

December 29th, 2015

Gallery Update: Appearances and ‘The Man in the High Castle’

I’ve begun to get the gallery up to date. Check out Alexa’s recent appearance earlier this month with the cast at a Q & A session. I’ve also added a bunch of additions to past events, various magazine scans (thanks to Alikat), and The Man in the High Castle stills, promos, and behind the scenes. Check back for more.

2015 SAG-AFTRA Foundation Screening And Q & A
2015 The Man In The High Castle Premiere: New York
2015 The Man In The High Castle Premiere: London
2015 TCA Summer Tour
Magazine: Ciak
Magazine: Popcorn
Magazine: Sci Fi Now
Magazine: The Hollywood Reporter
The Man In The High Castle: Promotional Episode Stills
The Man In The High Castle: Cast Promotional Images
The Man in the High Castle: Behind the Scenes (Unsorted)

December 20th, 2015

News: Amazon Renews ‘The Man in the High Castle’ For Second Season

Amazon is high on The Man in the High Castle.

The streamer has renewed the dystopian drama for a 10-episode second season less than a month after the first season’s premiere.

Man in the High Castle, an adaptation of the Philip K. Dick novel of the same name, presents an alternate history where the United States has lost World War II. Set in the 1960s, the West Coast is occupied by Imperial Japan and the East Coast is controlled by Nazi Germany. The series, which is written by Frank Spotnitz (X-Files), stars Alexa Davalos, Rupert Evans, Rufus Sewell and Joel de la Fuente. Spotnitz, Ridley Scott and Dick’s daughter, Isa Dick Hackett executive produce.

The pilot for Man in the High Castle was the most-watched pilot in Amazon history, studio chief Roy Price said in February when announcing the pickup of the series. The 10-episode first season premiered in full to Amazon Prime members on Nov. 20.

Amazon came under fire in November after it wrapped the seats on a New York City 42nd Street shuttle train in symbols of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan. The ads were ultimately removed in late November.

Please check back as I have many more updates to come to the site before the new year!

December 1st, 2015

Press: Rave, Reich, and Roll: Exploring the dark themes in The Man in the High Castle

The world can be a dark, dark place at times, but it’s even darker in Philip K. Dick’s disturbingly dystopian novel, The Man in the High Castle, wherein the Axis powers won World War II and America finds itself divided under the rule of The Nazis in the East and Japan in the West.

Dick’s chilling themes are both explored and expanded upon in the Amazon Original series The Man in the High Castle, whose entire first 10-episode season is streaming now on Amazon, and it’s free for Amazon Prime subscribers.

The show’s simmer-to-a-boil plot structure lends itself to can’t-help-it binge-watching, and with that, it also brings forth a score of hot-button and quite contemporary cultural issues — none of which are lost on series creator and showrunner Frank Spotnitz (The X-Files). “The reason to do this series is to reflect on the world we live in now,” he says. “The subject matter is really challenging. It’s difficult, and it risks offending a lot of people too.”

Spotnitz realizes he has a deep responsibility to examine all sides of the racial divisiveness inherent in this world. “I’ve been really sensitive to that, and tried to be as thoughtful as I can,” he continues. “This is a fiction show, but when you’re dealing with Nazi-ism and the extermination of Jews and blacks — people take this very personally.

“I’m also aware there are people out there who may be rooting for the wrong side in the show. It’s a tough balance, because I want to humanize these people. Too often we look at them and go, ‘Oh, those Nazis over there; they’re the bad guys.’ In this show, most of the Nazis have American accents, and you realize they weren’t all psychopaths. Most of them were normal people who somehow got persuaded to do really terrible, terrible things. And that makes us very uncomfortable. That’s what the show’s really about.”

Digital Trends sat down with Spotnitz and key members of The Man in the High Castle cast at the New York Comic Con last month to discuss how best to watch the show, its deepening cultural impact, and what its future may hold.

Frank Spotnitz (creator and showrunner): I’d say watch it on the biggest TV or the best monitor you can get. It’s beautifully lit by our cinematographers. It’s dark and it’s shot in 4K ultra-high resolution, so if you’re watching on a not-very-good screen, it’s not the best way to look at it.

I assume people will watch it in a relatively short period of time. In the streaming environment, you could watch the whole show in a day if you’re up for it, so I haven’t plotted it like I would a typical television series — with the expectations that there’s going to be a week between viewings. It’s really like one story, told over 10 hours. And Season 2 will be the same, when it happens.

Alexa Davalos (Juliana Crane, freedom seeker): Watch it in whatever way you want. That’s the beauty of these things nowadays — you don’t have to be at home on a Friday at 5 o’clock to watch it. You can have it on the go, you can watch it on a plane, or you can have it in your pocket. To have that access to this world — on any device at any time, at any place — is really beautiful.

I’m a massive bookworm and I know a lot of people who don’t read as much anymore; they watch television in the way that we would read a book. This show — it’s the modern-day novel, in a sense. People are watching as many episodes as they want, just as they would read as many chapters as they want.

Davalos: I don’t know… To each their own, I think. It does have those qualities that make you want to press that button and see what happens next. That’s the beauty of it. To savor it and stretch it out would be quite cool as well, I think, yeah.

Spotnitz: Some of the early concept art I got sent was for beer, pretzels, and hot dogs, and I went, “No no no no — that’s not what this is about.” There’s nothing wrong with beer and hot dogs (chuckles), but this is about fascist values in our country.

So what are the signs? The Nazis would have been about agriculture and industry, and state control. You look at Times Square today or in the ’60s, and it’s about capitalism and all its glory. Right? Chaotic capitalism. This world is something else, and that’s the kind of thing I’m looking for in the show.

What’s the difference between us and them, and why does it matter? What do we stand for? Who are we? We’re so angry with each other right now. The left and the right are so polarized and so rigid, and so far apart. But the one thing everybody can agree on is: We don’t want to be occupied by Nazis. We can all agree we’re against Nazis, right?

There are scenes in the show where you go, “I almost agree with that, with what that guy is saying — but I don’t!” Why not? That’s exciting to me.

Davalos: It’s so surreal, but the most surreal moment is how normal it was, because we’re so immersed in what we’re doing. That world is what we lived and breathed for six months. But now that we’ve had time to step back from it, we think, “My God, it’s shocking.” It was normal to see all that every day — but it’s not normal, you know what I mean?

The scope of the sets, and the detail, was perfect to period. I’ve never seen that before in my life — that level of attention. There was no “mock” anything. It was just magic. Everything was so visceral and palpable that it didn’t allow room for questioning.

Qualls: Those images are not a stunt. They’re the things that exist in this world. Otherwise, the show would be 20 minutes long. The subject matter is heavy.

Shooting the pilot was interesting because the iconography of all the Nazi stuff is really jarring. After a while, it just becomes part of your “normal,” and then it’s all about playing the story. We’re doing something good and different, and I hope that we don’t fuck it up. And I hope people embrace it.

De la Fuente: When you see Japanese soldiers wearing that uniform with that armband, there’s a visceral reaction — and we welcome that. We want people to have whatever feeling they’ll have there. And the hope is, through specific characters, if we do our jobs well and we create realistic, complex characters, we’ll slowly start to challenge your ideas about what’s good and what’s bad, and hopefully pull you into an interesting mix of gray.

We have to live life with the feeling of some sort of inevitability to our lives, but this show challenges that, which makes it sort of exciting. It’s not so inevitable. There is a collective sense that we’ve created something that’s really interesting. We feel like we have our finger on the pulse of something that should be part of a national or global conversation where people will be entertained and engaged, and want to talk about it.

How long do you see the show running?

Davalos: Frank is a genius at serialized television. He knows exactly how little to expose, and how much. It’s been a very slow build, and that’s very much his intention. We’ve sort of pulled the thread, and it’s unraveling slowly, slowly. He wants it to go on for a very long time, so we have to stretch those unveilings as long as we can.

Spotnitz: I was originally thinking three to five years, but now I’m thinking more. The more you think about the show, it’s about the whole world. If they give me the money, I could go anywhere.

I don’t know how long it will run, but I know where it ends. I know what’s going to happen to Juliana in the end, but I don’t know anything else. There are many, many things to talk about.

Source / Read More

November 23rd, 2015

Press: Alexa Davalos Calls ‘High Castle’ Leading Role ‘An Honor’

This Friday, Amazon Prime will premiere the first season of The Man in the High Castle, starring Alexa Davalos in the main role of Juliana Crain. The Mob City and Angel actress spoke with Starpulse at the recent New York Comic Con about her newest project, calling leading the Philip K. Dick adaptation “an honor.”

“I feel it’s very well distributed amongst all of us,” she continued. “We’re such an incredible team; the support that we all have is really unique, in my experience.

“[Juliana]’s an incredible character. We’re living in a world today where we have strong female characters discussed all the time, which is fantastic. I think within that is the vulnerability and the fear and the insecurity, panic and all the human emotions we feel day to day, and we can still be strong within that. So she has all these different colors, and playing with all of those is going to be fun.”

Living in an alternate history where the Axis Powers won World War II and the United States is under joint German-Japanese rule, Juliana has a tough road ahead of her. But Alexa, who first read the novel several years ago and is now on her sixth read-through, is excited for the challenge.

“It’s the birthplace, so for me to know where [executive producer] Frank [Spotnitz] has come to, the only way to understand fully is to read the source material,” she explained. “Also for me to develop Juliana, I wanted to be as true to the book as I could.

“Obviously in the script she’s different, and there’s pieces of her that are very different from the book. I was sort of hands on my hips and was like she’s not like that in the book, and I’m sure he wanted to strangle me with love, but I did get very involved in what she is in the novel. It was about finding a balance.”

“I think Frank is a genius when it comes to serialized television,” Alexa added. “He understands how little and how much to expose at a time. So it’s been a very slow build and that’s very much him. We’ve sort of pulled the thread and it’s unraveling slowly, but he wants this to go on for a very long time, so we have to kind of stretch those little unveilings if you will.”

Her preparation didn’t just involve re-reading Dick’s novel; she did a tremendous amount of research to play High Castle’s heroine. “It’s one of my favorite things,” she said. “I’ve done a lot of research about WWII for various projects and my own interest.

“In this particular case, [I did] a lot of studying the Japanese culture, which is all that she knew as far as physicality. There’s a grace and elegance about the women of that time. There’s sort of a demure quality to the women that we don’t have in this day and age. So it’s about studying the world that she lived in and Japanese culture was very important to that.”

“This is a story that explores not only physically what it feels like to live in that world, but spiritually,” Alexa continued. “How it affects the way we love and the way we live and the way we deal with people…There’s a lot of themes, in fact too many, that as you watch the series you go, wow that makes me really think of A, B, and C.”

And to her, that makes the entire journey worthwhile. “It flips everything on it’s head and that is, for me, what entertainment and escaping into a novel is,” she said. “It’s about enjoying everything and making you think. That’s exactly what we’re doing.”

The Man in the High Castle premieres Friday, November 20 with all 10 first-season episodes streaming on Amazon Prime.

November 23rd, 2015

Press: Woman Crush Wednesday – Alexa Davalos, The Woman Running ‘The Man In The High Castle’

It’s Wednesday. Which means it’s totally cool to very publicly crush on your favorite lady. Here at Decider, we like to make a weekly point of bowing down to a kick ass member of the female race and today, we’re head over heels for emerging talent Alexa Davalos, who you’ll get to know in Amazon’s first award-worthy drama, The Man in the High Castle.

Based on Philip K. Dick’s alternative history novel of the same name, The Man in the High Castle lands on Amazon Prime Video Friday, November 20th (ahem, the same day as Netflix‘s Jessica Jones — can you say binge battle?). The period drama takes place in post-WWII America after the Allies fail to overcome Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich. What unfolds is a bleak, unnerving reimagining of what the United States might look like if the Nazis had won. According to Dick’s novel, America is split as a prison state under the German Reich while Japan controls the West Coast, albeit in a slightly less menacing fashion.

Davalos, poised to be the show’s breakout talent, stars as Juliana Crain, a San Franciscan living under Japanese rule when her sister, Trudy is inexplicably shot down by rogue Nazis in the street. Before Trudy met her untimely death, however, she gave Juliana a mysterious film reel, which she only described as “a way out.” A terse, taught thriller, The Man In the High Castle offers a riveting peek inside a fictionalized version of our world that could have been all too real. Get to know the series’ star before you binge the complete first season November 20.

WHO’S THAT LADY?: Alexa Davalos Dunas

WHY WE’RE CRUSHING: In addition to playing an Aikido expert (and kicking some serious ass), it’s refreshing to see a tough, female character at the forefront of a war drama. Davalos’ fierce heroine is a tad reminiscent of Keri Russell’s Elizabeth Jennings on The Americans.

WHERE YOU KNOW HER FROM: You may recognize the French actress from the Vin Diesel sci-fi flick The Chronicles of Riddick or from Daniel Craig’s WWII drama Defiance. Davalos has also appeared in underrated horror tale, The Mist, before starring opposite Sam Worthington in Clash of the Titans. You may also remember her from TNT’s short-lived (but awesome) mini-series, Mob City, which centered on Bugsy Siegel’s organized crime ring that dominated Los Angeles in the 1940’s. Catch Davalos in The Man in the High Castle on Amazon Prime Video November 20.

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