Lily-Rose Depp Praises The Weeknd’s Performance on ‘The Idol’: ‘I Love Abel So Much. He Was Able to Melt Into This Role’

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Lily-Rose Depp takes on her biggest role to date, playing pop star Jocelyn, in HBO’s “The Idol,” which premiered on Sunday night.

Depp — who knows a thing or two about stardom, having grown up in the Hollywood limelight herself — says she was interested in “The Idol” because it delves into the crazy and chaotic world of the music industry.

“I was really intrigued by this project as soon as I heard about it. The world that it was exploring with all of the craziness and chaos that goes on is one that we don’t get to see all the time,” Depp says. Speaking about her character, she adds, “Jocelyn is a pop star who is constantly surrounding by people who she’s not sure if she can trust.”

Talking during a post-show breakdown that HBO aired after the first episode on Sunday, Depp praised her co-star, Abel “The Weeknd” Tesfaye, who is co-creator and executive producer of the show.

“I love Abel so much,” Depp says. “He was able to melt into this role in a way that is really difficult for anybody to do.”

In “The Idol,” The Weeknd plays Tedros, Jocelyn’s love interest who is a mysterious and creepy leader of a modern-day cult. In the first episode, Tedros meets Jocelyn at a club and after they hook-up in a stairwell, she invites him over to her house and they begin a complex relationship. The episode ends with Tedros suffocating Jocelyn with her red silk robe and then slitting a hole over her mouth with a knife as a symbol of, what he says, is displaying her trust in him.

“He offers her a freedom that she hasn’t felt in a while,” Depp says of the dynamic between the two characters.

The Weeknd co-created “The Idol” with Reza Fahim and Sam Levinson, creator of HBO’s mega-hit “Euphoria.” Levinson says that right after he had finished the second season of “Euphoria,” he received a call to head over the The Weeknd’s house and that’s when they started talking about making the show. (Fun fact: Jocelyn’s mansion in “The Idol” is The Weeknd’s real-life Los Angeles home.)

“The Idol” is “about an artist who feels stuck who also feels pressured by the expectations of the world at large and is trying to figure out who she is and what she wants to say,” Levinson says. He later adds, “Part of what this show is about is having a little bit more skepticism about celebrities we ultimately idolize.”

“I’m really proud of how we made this show,” Levinson says.

To round out his perfect cast, Levinson called artists that he always admired, but hadn’t worked with before. “The Idol” ensemble includes K-Pop superstar Jennie from the group Blackpink; singer Troye Sivan; Eli Roth; Rachel Sennot; Dan Levy; Jane Adams; and Da’Vine Joy Randolph.

“We all have a great dynamic and a loose one and a fun one,” Levinson says of working on-set with the cast. “We’ve got a script, but they’re just riffing and going with one another… We had such an incredible cast. There was a real trust that they had of each other as performers, so it was interesting to just see what happens when the life unfolds.”

In the first episode, one scene has Jocelyn rehearsing with her dancers, one of which is played by Jennie, who of course, is a real-life triple threat.

“I didn’t have a lot of time to learn the choreography for the dance scenes,” Jennie says with a laugh, during the HBO post-show. “But thankfully, I do this all the time, so it came naturally to me.”

Even before its premiere, “The Idol” has generated much conversation — and is sure to continue that trend after the first episode. But, the cast says audiences won’t expect what happens as the season unfolds.

“As the season progresses, there is definitely chess being played between the two of them,” Randolph says about Depp and The Weeknd’s characters. Sennot adds, “This is a ride. It goes somewhere different than you think it’s going to go.”

Source: Variety

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