White Lotus' Meghann Fahy knows Daphne isn't a victim

White Lotus’ Meghann Fahy knows Daphne isn’t a victim

Of course, at Meghann Fahy’s white lotus The character, Daphne, comes across as an Instagram-perfect mom who can’t remember if she votes, but she has more than meets the eye. She reveals it in this week’s episode of the HBO series, “Bull Elephants,” when she decides to take Harper from Aubrey Plaza on an impromptu trip from their hotel in Taormina, Sicily, to Noto, apparently just to play mind games with her. husband, Cameron (Theo James). Once there, Daphne decides to offer Harper an edible and share her thoughts on the obvious fact that her husband is cheating on her a lot. She’s not the victim in their relationship, she insists, and she knows the case she joined.

At the Vulture Festival in Los Angeles over the weekend, Fahy discussed this new side to Daphne after a screening of the episode, and revealed a bit about creator Mike White’s intentions with Cameron and Daphne’s mind games. She also discussed the experience of filming on location in Sicily, learning how to make moderately decent eggplant parmesan, and what her breakout character is about. The fat guy could make “Zen mom” Daphne.

This chat about the palace where Daphne talks about not being a victim, what do you think that means to her?
For me, that’s kind of the key for her. I remember Mike at the very beginning was pretty specific about Daphne not being a victim of her situation. This dynamic that they set up in the first two episodes between Cameron and Daphne, I was like, “Who? What’s her name?” You’ve seen her before. You kind of think she’s just this simple housewife who doesn’t have too many things to do. And I think what gets really interesting in the dynamic it’s in this episode when we realize that’s not totally the case Daphne relates to her own sadness in a way that maybe some of the other people she’s traveling with don’t don’t, and I think that’s what makes her really happy in her marriage.

Another thing Mike said that seemed really important was that Daphne and Cameron’s connection is really legit, and they really love being together. They have a great sex life and they laugh and they play, and all of those things are real. It’s not what Harper thinks it is, it’s just bullshit. And so I think that’s the driving force behind all of this, and then you’re kind of supposed to ask yourself, Does it really matter how someone finds happiness? Even if it’s unconventional for you and it might seem a bit crazy, if there’s happiness out there, who cares?

I read an interview where you described her as a “zen mom”. I was wondering what you meant by that.
I actually can’t take any credit for it, because it’s actually a term Aubrey coined when we were trying to figure out what her wardrobe would be like. The Zen mom is that idealized woman who has 75 children – not 74, 75 – and always wears a beautiful floral dress and looks like she doesn’t mind anything. And I felt like that was kind of the vibe I wanted for Daphne. I wanted her to look very carefree, because she’s kind of carefree, even in a bad way, like not voting.

What was it like filming in this palace? I think it was actually in Palermo, right?
It was in Palermo. It was pretty cool because Mike really likes to bring in non-actors to do things. So there’s a two-page scene from that episode that ended up getting cut, where the real owner of that palace was showing Aubrey and me around. And he had never been on camera before, and it was so cute, because he couldn’t walk and talk at the same time. So Mike kept trying to say, “So you just explain to them where everything is, but you move on.” And he would say, “The bedrooms – are here. The dining room – is here. He was so precious. And it really was his house! And we finished and we were in the pool and he brought us gin and tonics. It was so sweet. I loved that Mike likes to find that authenticity wherever he can. Much of the staff you see are the real staff who worked at the Four Seasons with us.

I’m curious about the experience of filming in this hotel in Sicily when it’s out of season and almost empty. What’s it like acting on vacation at this hotel in Taormina?
Oh, psychotic! I mean, 100% madness. It was like a weird acting camp. In many ways, I wouldn’t recommend it! No, it was so much fun, it was really very special and unique. It was really cool to see how Taormina flourishes. Like, when we got there, it was empty, 70% of the restaurants and everything else was closed, and then it was like overnight, all of a sudden, the streets were filled with people. So it was pretty cool to see this transition happen in real time.

I was surprised at how willing this community was to welcome us and make us a part of their daily life. The people who had their restaurants open were so kind to us, welcoming us and offering us cooking lessons. They were just incredibly warm and kind. For me, when I think about the trip, that’s what I remember more than anything, the people we met in this region who were so lovely.

Did you have a favorite meal you had there, something that sticks in your memory like, “I really miss the X from Taormina?
Well, I made an eggplant parmesan with my own hands which was pretty mediocre! But I had a great time doing this course. Really, it was just that man who owned that restaurant, who wasn’t education Cooking classes. He said to me, “Come to my restaurant tomorrow at noon.” And I thought, “Am I in some kind of romantic comedy? It’s so sick! And I just walked in and he was like, “Cool, go to the kitchen.” I had an apron and the chef cooked meals to give to people who were there to pay to eat the food. He was just teaching me things while it was happening. It was amazing.

Going back to the relationship between Daphne and Cameron, did you know Theo before? How did you meet him?
I knew him! He didn’t know me. I had seen it in Divergent sure, but no, we haven’t met, and there hadn’t been any chemistry readings before, which is a bit unusual for things like this. So we met for the first time in Italy. But it was really easy to make scenes with him. He’s so (a) talented and (b) open, that’s the only thing you can ask for, you know? He was really playful, and it was really simple with him.

You have this talk about elephants, which gives the episode its title. What was it like doing that scene with Aubrey? How did you approach the dynamic where they kind of feel?
It was fun because it was a new place for us, and I think it was also the first time that Aubrey and I had done scenes alone together, up until that point we had done a lot of things with just the four of us. Some of those Noto scenes were my favorite scenes to shoot with her, because I just felt like it was a different color for Daphne and Harper that we hadn’t seen yet.

It’s interesting to see that part of her revealed. How did you think about that side of her? What do you think she sees in Harper that she wants to understand?
I think there’s a real desire in Daphne to connect with Harper. I think Daphne probably doesn’t have a lot of friends, and so I think that’s part of what drives her. But she also uses it in a way, like, Harper is kind of a prop in Daphne’s game that she plays with Cameron and they both have fun on. For example, I sincerely believe that Daphne would have gone to Nodo alone if Harper hadn’t gone with her, just to piss her off.

When I spoke to Haley Richardson about the show, she mentioned that Mike White seems to incorporate acting parts into the characters you play. He is very open to a little improvisation. Do you think there are parts of Daphne that are colored by who you are?
Yeah, absolutely. And I feel like everyone on the show would probably say that’s true for them. You’re able to somehow connect with these people who in many ways aren’t approachable humans, and that’s because Mike does. It chooses something in you that the character has too, and it kind of lets you go and do that thing.

What do you think was the one thing about you that the character has too?
I know this is so lame, but I feel like I can’t give this away. It’s too vulnerable. But I will say that I think something that Daphne has that I connect with is just that she has a tendency to bring people around her, and I connect to that. So that’s something that I feel like she and I share.

Before playing Daphne, you were sure The fat guy. What do you think Sutton would think of Daphne?
You know, there are some pretty big similarities between these two characters, and I think that’s their warmth. I think Sutton and Daphne are similar in that they want people around them to feel safe. It’s often humorous. And there’s just kind of a general sunshine in these two characters that I think are similar. I think they would probably get along, although I think Sutton is a little tougher than Daphne in some ways. It would be interesting to see, they fight in a ring!

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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