Actress Séainín Brennan returned to our screens this week in Season Two of the BBC Primetime Drama THE FALL. The Irish actress, who is from Belfast where the drama is filmed, resumed her role as Liz Tyler in the critically acclaimed thriller, alongside Jamie Dornan as Paul Spector and Gillian Anderson as Stella Gibson.
Season One of The Fall saw Séainín take on her most challenging TV role to date playing Liz Tyler – a bereaved mother and wife who is struggling to come to terms with the recent death of her only child. With little to no comfort from her husband, Liz sought solace in her bereavement counsellor Paul Spector (played by Dornan) who, unbeknown to Liz, is the serial killer at large. Paul Spector, in turn, began to develop an unhealthy professional relationship with Liz in her most vulnerable state, and, after discovering that she was suffering in silence at the hands of her abusive husband, managed to persuade her to leave him by the end of the first season.
Over the course of the five part series their relationship unfolded and now, after the first three episodes of this new season, Séainín returned in episode four as Liz Tyler to play a crucial role with explosive consequences.
Speaking of her return, Séainín said: “Every actress wants a character they can really get their teeth into, and I’m very lucky that I get to do that with Liz. Allan Cubitt is a phenomenal writer and I’m over the moon to be working with him again as he takes Liz on another emotional roller-coaster ride.”
Speaking about her character Séainín said: “When we first meet Liz in Season One, she’s living a hell on earth existence. Her only child has died and she is grief stricken.
No parent should have to bury their child and it’s a very real pain that is difficult to watch. It’s clear from the start that her marriage is suffering as a result, however, it’s only later we discover she is actually suffering terrible domestic violence at the hands of her abusive husband. It’s impossible to underplay the brutality of domestic violence and often people are uncomfortable talking about it, which leads many women to suffer in silence. Liz feels so feels isolated and alone and thinks that the only person who she can confide in is her bereavement counsellor Paul Spector, who gives Liz the courage she desperately needs to leave her husband. Of course she’s totally unaware that he is the serial killer loose on the streets of Belfast.”
On the subject of domestic violence, Séainín states: “As an actor, I want to portray the truth of any given situation, no matter how difficult that situation may be. I carry out extensive research to get a very real insight into what my character is going through in order for me to try to translate that accurately on screen. What I have learned is that domestic violence is like a door marked “DO NOT ENTER” – people shy away from it – they want to sweep it under the carpet and forget it exists, but it’s an all too familiar scenario for so many people. I got an insight and understanding as to why some women stay in an abusive relationship, despite the physical and emotional attacks. That’s the most terrifying thing of all. Spector offers Liz “a lifeline” in Season One by facilitating her departure from her husband and that’s where she begins her journey in Season Two.”
Speaking about Season 2, Séainín said: “I hate spoilers, so I’m obviously not going to give anything away, but what I will say is that the next few episodes will deliver quality drama at its very best.”
Aside from playing a regular character in The Fall, the busy actress has been working on several other high profile projects. Séainín also plays Dr. Brynn Morad in HALO: NIGHTFALL – executive produced by Ridley Scott. Her first movie “DARE TO BE WILD”, will be released in 2015 and she is currently in pre-production for a new exciting short film “GIRONA”, which she will start filming in January 2015. Writer and director Paul McGuigan wrote the role of Sophie in “GIRONA” for Séainín.
The Fall airs each Thursday on BBC 2 at 9pm and on Sundays on RTE 1 at 9.30pm.