Seymour, whose credits include “War and Remembrance,” “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” and “The Kominsky Method,” said there were many creative reasons she said yes to the series — and a practical one too.
“There isn’t that much work for actresses after 40 anyway, but certainly after 70. I mean, there’s Dame Judi Dench, Helen Mirren and a couple of others. But I just thought this was just a wonderful, fun character and intelligent. And I think we want to be entertained,” she said.
Seymour, 71, did suffer for her art: She shattered a knee two weeks into the shoot while taping a scene, which had started out well.
“As I’m running across and I’ve done it, I’m silently saying to myself, ’There you go, Jane, you could be an action character. You run like a gazelle. Who knows how old you are?’”
Things took a turn for the worse on a subsequent take.
“I’m running on asphalt, in the rain, on wet leaves with felt on the bottom (of her shoes). Splat! I landed, I thought on my chin, which I did, but I didn’t get wounded that badly. But I all the way hit my left kneecap. Anyway, the whole crew thought that the show is over, and I proved them wrong.”
A lesser annoyance involved drinking non-alcoholic red wine that was “absolutely disgusting,” eventually replaced by a better-tasting option. But Seymour said she had more trouble with acting like she was drinking shots, because she’d never done it before — and she had to toss back flat soda pop, which didn’t help.
“I do it like I’m holding an English teacup and my little finger is sticking out,” she recalled, and was told, “’that is not how you do a shot’…. They were all laughing at me because I was getting it all over myself, the shots were going in every direction.”
That’s not to say she didn’t enjoy the occasional beverage outside of work, alongside her co-star Amy Huberman, who plays her daughter-in-law on the show.
“We all hung out on the weekend. It was COVID. We weren’t supposed to be anywhere near each other, but I had this lovely little house right on the water at Dalkey,” a posh seaside Dublin suburb, she said. “Patrick Dempsey was living in the house just across the way. We just decided to do our own COVID rules….If it was outside on my rooftop with wine or Champagne, then we could say that we were actually rehearsing.”
One unusual element in “Harry Wild’’ is that Seymour’s character has a younger love interest. Stuart Graham, who plays opposite her as Ray Tiernan, is 54.
Turns out her co-star was more shy about love scenes, she said.
“As scripted, we both supposed to be naked, and he just said, ‘That’s just not happening.’ So that was changed slightly,” she said. “They are talking if we come back in season two…. the father of my son might appear, and they definitely want to make sure that I have some much younger lovers.”