The calm before the Swarm
Chlöe Bailey and Dominique Fishback stunned at the SXSW premiere of Prime Video series Swarm that’s sure to stir up social media buzz over its sheer shock appeal that resonates long after the credits roll.
The shining stars posed for pics, stopped for interviews, and basked in good vibes during the SXSW Film & TV Festival opener in Austin, Texas.
In Janine Nabers and Donald Glover‘s Swarm, Dre (Dominique Fishback)–a young woman obsessed with fictional Beyoncé-esque Pop star Ni’Jah–spirals into dark, unexpected places after the death of her sister Marissa (Chlöe Bailey).
“We know that the show is propulsive,” admitted co-creator and showrunner Janine Nabers in an interview with THR.
“We know that it’s going to evoke a lot of conversation. We know that people are going to have a lot of responses and may be angry or really inspired. So I just want you guys to know that if you have any feelings after watching this, and if you really want to tweet about it, then tweet at Donald.”
Check out the creepy trailer below:
Fishback was originally approached to play Dre’s sister Marissa (Chlöe Bailey) but fought for the lead role.
“I heard from my team that Donald was creating a show and wanted me to be part of it,” said Fishback in an interview with Vanity Fair. “I was like, ‘Oh, shoot! Donald Glover (co-executive producer and co-creator) knows me. That’s pretty cool.’”
“I don’t want to be able to catch up to myself as an actor,” she continued. “[Dre] didn’t give a lot of direction about who she was, why she felt the way she did. I really had to go on instinct.”
Nabers and Glover took inspiration from classic TV antiheroes like Mad Men’s Don Draper and The Sopranos’ Tony Soprano for the series that’s shown “through the lens of a Black, modern-day woman.”
“When we shot the last scene of the pilot, every single person stopped what they were doing and gave Dom a standing ovation for three minutes,” recalled Nabers, co-executive producer and co-creator of the series who wrote the hilarious Mr. Chocolate episode of Atlanta.
“I’ve been doing TV for a long time and I’ve never seen that. That was the moment that Donald and I looked at each other and we were like, ‘All right—we got something right.’”
“Dre and Marissa are in their 20s and Malia is in her 20s, so it was really great having someone like her in the room,” said Nabers. “She’s a very professional person. She’s an incredible writer and artist. We really wanted to give her the opportunity to get her feet wet in TV and see if this is something she wants to continue doing.”
Swarm premieres exclusively on Prime Video March 17.
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