On her graduation night, Charlotte (Odessa Young) learns her first love has returned to her small Georgia town for the first time since vanishing the year before, in the midst of an awful trauma in her life. On that night, a girl her age is found dead, and then another. Something terrible has arisen in this place, and as her final summer speeds towards a nightmarish conclusion, Charlotte gets the unshakeable feeling that somehow it is coming for her. In ways more troubling than she could ever know.
I had the chance to speak to Madelyn Cline over the phone about, The Giant. She shared her reason for wanting to be a part of the film and her experience working with Odessa Young and more…
Nancy Tapia: It is a good day. We get to discuss, The Giant, that you have coming up.
Madelyn Cline: Yes.
Nancy Tapia: I had the opportunity to check it out. I am curious to know, what was it about the story that made you want to be a part of the cast?
Madelyn Cline: The story was, when I first read it such a real page turner. It was thrilling and it was creepy. It was ominous, and it was a bit of a mind fuck. I just, I love stories like that and it was also coming of age. So in that way, it really embodied the uncertainty of moving into adulthood, and moving away from what you’re comfortable. With what you’ve always known. On top of that, it is close to home because it’s in the South. It was written in a very visceral atmospheric way, in the same way as the film portrays the story. So it was just all around the script was awesome and just really drew me in. I wanted to be a part of it immediately.
Nancy Tapia: For those that are going to be viewing the film, can you talk about your character, Olivia?
Madelyn Cline: Yeah. So Olivia is Charlotte’s (Odessa Young) best friend, best high school friend. They’ve drifted apart because Charlotte’s been in this toxic relationship or she’s just been blinded by love and it’s just been all encompassing as young love is. She’s drifted because of all of those things, like all of those pressures as a young adult moving into adulthood, moving away. It’s all affecting her and coming crashing down. I think one thing I love about Olivia is that it’s almost your first love in a friendship kind of way, that best friend type love. You do anything for that person. You go anywhere for them. It’s ride or die, and even if you drifted, you still would do whatever you can for them, which I relate to and I love that story.
Nancy Tapia: Yes. I was actually going to mention something about that. Pretty much your teen friendships, where you’re starting to learn in depth the true concept of friendship. It’s also tested in this film.
Madelyn Cline: For sure, I think that’s what I really love. I’m the kind of person that if I am friends with someone, I’m friends with someone. Doesn’t matter how far, doesn’t matter how long it’s been. Even though sometimes you lose touch in communication or whatever, I’ll still do anything for someone. I want to see people happy and thrive. It’s homage to and that it is love, if that makes sense. To tell that kind of love story in a way to your best friends or your first best friends growing up together. Especially growing up in a small town, you’re super, close to people. And just telling that story, it felt familiar.
Nancy Tapia: Well, Madelyn, you’re an awesome friend. It sounds like you can maintain a friendship. You may not see your friends in a long while, but you can pick up like you just saw them yesterday.
Madelyn Cline: Yeah. I mean, I’m not always the best communicator. I’m very much notorious for losing my phone or letting my phone die or not charging it or going off the grid, because I’m distracted. I’m very much a one track mind kind of person, but I really do love my friends. I love the kind of friendship where you can just pick up like there’s been no distance or time between you.
Nancy Tapia: Well, don’t lose that sort of character, because you know what? It’s nice to disconnect too.
Madelyn Cline: Sure. Oh, absolutely. I think there’s something to be said for taking time for yourself. I’m very much the kind of person that needs to recharge by myself. I do love being around people, but I also do need to take every once in a while. I need to take a day for myself and not talk to anyone. Put my phone down and just do anything to recharge anything internal.
Nancy Tapia: In the film there were quite a few scenes where you guys are swimming in a lake. I’m wondering how cold that lake was, because it looked pretty chilly.
Madelyn Cline: Actually, it was really warm.
Nancy Tapia: Really?
Madelyn Cline: We were shooting around Lake Oconee, which is near Madison, Georgia. We were smack in the middle of July shooting it, I believe. So that water is like bath water during the summer. It was actually pretty warm jumping in. I mean, it was at night. It’s so warm that the outside air is colder than the water, which is saying something because it’s pretty warm in the summer.
Nancy Tapia: I’m like the character Charlotte, played by Odessa Young I won’t go in, because you don’t know what’s in there besides rocks.
Madelyn Cline: Sure. I don’t really like water at night, if I’m being honest. I don’t like that I can’t see what’s in the water and I’m not a fan. The beach spooks me at night, because the water is pitch black.
Nancy Tapia: I feel like anything in the water at night and can’t see could be deceiving.
Madelyn Cline: It scares me. It’s not my favorite thing. I would not personally swim at night.
Nancy Tapia: Well, you got to do a little bit of that in this film. So that must of been a bit challenging for you.
Madelyn Cline: Yeah. That was fun to get out of my comfort zone. So in the summer at Lake Oconee, there are these, I think Mayflies, and they’re everywhere and they’re nasty little looking bugs. I hate them. They’re not fun and I strongly dislike them, but they’re everywhere and they’re flying around. There was one part of filming where we were in the water and I was in a little tube, a little donut, and it was me and a few other characters. We were just all splashing around and having a good time. All of a sudden someone yells, snake.
Nancy Tapia: That’s scary.
Madelyn Cline: We thought like, “oh God!” I’ve never seen people move that fast in water, including myself. We were all terrified. So, we quickly wrapped that scene up. But yeah, you don’t really know what you’re going to get on the lake at night.
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Nancy Tapia: Yeah, bad joke. Let’s talk about what it was like to film with Odessa. I had the chance to speak with her for Shirley, and she seems to be a lovely gal.
Madelyn Cline: She’s a lovely gal, she truly is. She’s so giving as an actor and as a person as well. When I first got to Madison, immediately she came and picked me up. She introduced me to the production office and everyone there. She immediately hopped in her rental and we drove to the lake. The cast and crew were doing a cookout/beach volleyball day. I immediately met everyone. She made me feel right at home. She introduced me to everyone on the car ride over to the beach. We just started talking, started talking about life. Immediately she’s just very, very warm and makes everybody feel very welcome. As an actress, she’s very giving and she reflects that in her work as well. She doesn’t leave anything unturned and I admire her quite a lot.
Nancy Tapia: Before we wrap I want to congratulate you on Outer Banks.
Madelyn Cline: Thank you.
Nancy Tapia: You’re welcome. I believe there is a second season, will you be in it? The first season was a major success.
Madelyn Cline: Yeah, it’s exciting! It’s cool to get a second season. It feels like we’re doing something right. So we’re happy to be back. It’s great to be back. This is one of my favorite sets I’ve ever worked on. I feel pretty lucky to be able to come back under what the world is currently experiencing.
Nancy Tapia: That’s great! You also had this fun, Hot Stuff video with a “dirty dancing” jump!
Madelyn Cline: Yes, thank you. That was a good time. That was a fun little summer project for sure. Chase (Chase Stokes) and I were pretty excited to work with Kygo. We’ve been big fans of his for a long time. So that was definitely a fan girl moment. Then to top it off, it was Donna Summer. I was pretty excited throughout that entire process, and it was really cool to see it come together.
Nancy Tapia: To finalize, is there anything else that you want to share or you may be working on?
Madelyn Cline: Well, The Giant, coming out November 13th. Just season two, Outer Banks is currently what we’re working on. I can’t wait for people to see what we’ve been doing. I’m really, proud of this cast for the work that they’ve done this season.
Nancy Tapia: Thank you so much, Madelyn, for your time. A week from today, people will be watching The Giant.
Madelyn Cline: Yeah, I love it.
Nancy Tapia: Well, thank you so much. Congratulations.
Madelyn Cline: Thank you.
The Giant available on demand, tomorrow November 13th.