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'Underneath is turmoil:' Sarah Gadon on the challenges of Alias Grace

'Underneath is turmoil:' Sarah Gadon on the challenges of Alias Grace
From CBC - September 23, 2017

Churchill's saying about a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma? He could have been talking about Grace Marks, the woman at the centre of Alias Grace.

There's a lot bubbling under the surface in the new CBC-TV and Netflix miniseries adapted from Margaret Atwood's award-winning novel, inspired by the true story of Grace Marks, a poor Irish immigrant and domestic servant accused and convicted of murder in 19th century Canada.

Central to the six-part miniseries is the question: Just who is Grace Marks?

"You are playing a real person, but then you are playing everybody else's idea of her, so that's where it becomes complicated," said Toronto actress Sarah Gadon, who stars as Grace and has called it the most challenging role of her career.

Murderer or pawn? Bystander or liar?

The uncertainty surrounding the character explores "the idea of having an identity projected onto you versus how you feel yourself, and grappling with that discrepancy [of] being who you are and feeling who are and trying to rise to the expectations of what people want you to be," Gadon told CBC News in a recent interview.

Complex stories about women

The limited seriesthe initial episodes of which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival comes on the heels of another high-profile Atwood adaptation: Hulu's successfulThe Handmaid's Tale, which has earned criticalacclaim, earned a raft of Emmy Awards last weekend and has begun shooting a second season.

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