One of the most promising shows this season, RED BAND SOCIETY features a group of children dealing with the ups and downs of growing up, all while living in a hospital. I spoke with two cast members, Ciara Bravo and Nolan Sotillo who play Emma and Jordi, young patients at the hospital. We talked about what it’s like on set, visiting children’s hospitals, and what we can look forward to on tonight’s premiere.
What drew you both to the show? What was it about Jordi and Emma that was so special to you?
Ciara: For me, I just really liked how put together she was. Also, the fact that she is suffering from this disease and she is still able to joke around and make a life for herself at this hospital
Nolan: For me I think my favorite part about Jordi was how driven he was. How committed he was to get his treatment, even though it was going to cost him his leg. He was determined to get it done.
Nolan you mentioned Jordi’s leg, in the promos for the show that he will eventually have to get it amputated. How was that as an actor to play a character who goes through getting his leg amputated?
Nolan: That was very powerful for me and I think it was a matter of giving truth to the role. For those who have actually gone through this experience, that was the biggest thing for me, to show the truth of it. To prepare, I just tried to imagine having that prognosis of my leg and real life and honestly act how I would react.
During the press tour you both have been visiting a lot of children’s hospitals, how has that whole experience been for the both of you?
Ciara: I loved it! The kids that we’ve met have been amazing and really inspiring. They are so positive and so much fun to hang out with.
Your characters share a really sweet moment where they dance together. How was shooting that scene?
Ciara: It was fun, I guess. It was really hot.
Nolan: It was so hot!
Ciara: There was a lot of sweat. It wasn’t that bad, Nolan’s a great kid!
Nolan: She isn’t bad herself!
How is working with people like Octavia Spencer and Dave Annable?
Ciara: Amazing! Talk about two of the best people you will ever meet in your entire life. They are so much fun to work with and so funny and so nice. We have so much to learn from them.
Nolan: I think Octavia, I don’t know how to explain it. She isn’t a mom on set, she just looks out for us and it’s incredible. I had a scene with Dave and he was so encouraging and it’s unbelievable to work with him.
Aside from Emma and Jordi, what characters are you looking forward to getting to learn more about this season?
Ciara: I’m really looking forward to learning more about Kara (Zoe Levin) she’s got a lot of secrets to reveal.
Nolan: Everyone! I think Leo, who is played by Charlie Rowe. He is the basis of the Red Band Society. I think to go into his past and see why he is there would be a great story.
What can you tell us about tonight’s premiere?
Nolan: The pilot will make you laugh and cry, it’s very uplifting, very coming of age, and it’s about life; it’s not about death. I think that is my favorite quote about it. People go to hospitals and death comes as a result of that and really you learn how to live.
Ciara: I agree with that. I think the show does a nice job bringing to light the situation that these kids are in and expresses the positive side to living in a hospital.
If you could pick up Emma and Jordi and drop them in any other show on television right now, what would it be?
Ciara: For me just because I can play Emma it would be SHERLOCK. I love SHERLOCK so much
Nolan: The only show I’m really watching right now is GAME OF THRONES. I guess they just kind of chop off my leg with an axe and we go from there.
Ciara: That would be pretty cool!
Nolan: How would Emma react to that?
Ciara: I don’t know, but I know she would thrive in SHERLOCK. She is incredibly smart and I think she would get along very well with Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman.
Nolan: I think he would do a good job in GAME OF THRONES because he is very brave and determined; he’s a great young man.
You can watch Nolan and Ciara on the premiere of RED BAND SOCIETY tonight at 9:00 on FOX.