Violett Beane Continues to Bloom on ‘God Friended Me’
By Pauline Perenack
Violett Beane is steadily becoming a star in her own right while starring in the CBS drama, God Friended Me. While many people may still recognize her from her appearances in The Flash, or The Resident, Beane has quickly become the face of Sunday night and God Friended Me.
In her role as Cara Bloom, Beane has grown her character from being one of main character Miles Finer’s friend suggestions from the mysterious God account, to being a part of his ‘God Squad’ helping out other friend suggestions, to jetting off to Paris to write a book.
With the second season of God Friended Me set to premiere on September 29, in what is becoming a super fun annual tradition, I was able to talk to Violett about the show, what Cara went through in season one, what she’ll have coming up in season two, and what it’s like to interact with the fans of the show.
Congratulations on the second season of God Friended Me!
Thank you. I’m excited to be doing another season.
So, on the show, you play Cara Bloom. Tell me about her, who she is, and her journey through season one.
When we first meet Cara in the pilot, we see that she’s struggling with the fact that her mom, who left when she was young, she’s actually finally found her again in New York, but she doesn’t really know how to take the next step, or talk to her again, or to say hi. And then she links up with Miles, who is an atheist, who gets friended by someone calling themselves God on Facebook, and he helps her sort of realize that it’s ok, and that she can link up with her mom and maybe have a relationship. And then Cara decides to stick around and help Miles to get to these new friend suggestions, and the two of them help people in need, help people who have bad relationships with their family members, or losing their job at work, or whatever it is, they help everyone. And at the end of season one, Cara takes a job offer that moves her to Paris and as that happened, someone comes up to Miles, this character named Joy, who says that she actually got his name as a friend suggestion from someone calling themselves God on Facebook. So it’s a really fun cliffhanger and it sort of sets up season two.
Talking about season two, what can you tell us about it, and Cara’s storyline this season?
So there’s sort of a three episode arc that happens at the beginning of the season with Cara being in Paris, and Miles being in New York. When we pick up with Miles, he hasn’t been able to find Joy. She’s been MIA, basically. And he’s wondering what he’s supposed to do, so him and Rakesh track Joy down and the three of them start helping friend suggestions she’s receiving. Meanwhile, in Paris, Cara is writing Simon’s book, and she’s sort of realizing that it’s not really the stories that she wants to tell. And while this is going on, someone from Cara’s past pops back up and she helps Cara realize things about life, about her relationships, about her job, everything, and at the end of this three episode arc, the God account sends Miles to Paris, and the two of them reunite in Paris and they sort of go on a new mission together.
Talk to me about being able to film in Paris because it sounds like you got to do multiple episodes out there.
We did a lot of exteriors, and then we used interiors here in New York, but we shot for a few days, and it was really fun. It was cool to have a French crew. And we got to film at the classic locations. We filmed at the Louvre before it opened so there was no one there except for our crew, and that never happens, so that was kind of magical. The sun was rising. It was gorgeous, and I think it’s going to add a really gorgeous aspect to the first three episodes.
I’m excited for that. When Cara went off last season, I was hoping we would get to see her story in Paris, versus something happened, and she just comes back at the beginning of the season.
Right, yeah. When we talked about it last season, Brian [Wynbrandt] and Steven [Lilien], the creators of the show, were like, we don’t want it to be this thing where she just goes and she comes back. We want her to be a changed person from her experience there, and I think we accomplished that.
Is it two storylines we’ll be following then?
Yeah, so it’s sort of an A and B story, but what you’re going to find out throughout this arc is that maybe the mission Miles is on, and the mission Cara is on, maybe they’re connected and ultimately he needs to come to Paris in order for them to fill in the rest of it. They kind of link back up through the stories. It’s fun.
It sounds like you’ve already done a few episodes this season, so which one is your favorite that fans should be looking forward to?
That’s a good question. I think my favorite is episode four, or five. They’re kind of like a double episode. There’s a lot of meaty character stuff in it, as opposed to just story and plot. There’s a lot with the individual main characters, a lot of development with them. I really like those.
Now that you’re on the second season, we can delve more into characters rather than focusing on Friend of the Week. So, do we get to see more of that?
So far, I think there’s been a good amount of that. With Ali’s character, and Rakesh’s character, I think they sort of have more development as well, and we get to learn more about who they are, and what their path in life is.
I was talking to Javicia, and she was very excited to get out from behind the bar.
She does, yeah. It’s true, she’s out and about.
What do you hope for Cara this season?
I hope to see her in the workplace more. At the end of last season she gets fired from her job and so when she comes back to New York this season, she’s kind of at the low end of the totem pole, so I kind of want to see her come back. I want to see her get on top of the leaderboard and write amazing stories, and I’m hoping to see some of that in the second season.
So is she going back to Catapult?
She goes back to Catapult, but the stories that she’s writing are not doing as well as they used to. There’s a couple of new employees that are taking that place and so there’s kind of a little bit of a schism between her and at work, and yeah, I want to see her climb her way back up, and be successful, so we’ll see.
One of the main storylines for Cara last season was dealing with her mom, and an episode with her father. Can we expect more interactions with Cara’s parents? Specifically, will her father return?
Yeah. We will. Part of the Paris story and what Cara comes to realize, has to do with her family, and I’ve worked with Rachel [Bay Jones] a couple of times so far, and I believe there will be some more storylines with both the parents in future episodes. I just don’t know when, or what those will be, but I’ve heard that there will be some more mom and dad dinners.
Social media is obviously a big part of the show, so what has the fan interaction been like with you since the show started?
It’s been really, really positive. I’ve had a lot of people who have messaged me or reached out and said they watched this with their family, or it’s really helped, or that they like that there’s a positive, uplifting message to each story, and that each story, even when it seems like it won’t work out, it does, and I think that gives a lot of people hope who are watching our show. That’s what I mostly have been hearing from people, and I think that’s really special that a show can really make that big of a difference in their lives.
What do you think it is that has made this show so popular?
I think having something that’s uplifting definitely attracts a good amount of people. There’s a lot of shows out there that are about murder, and I think people want to feel like this show they’re watching isn’t the world they’re living in. They want to feel this positive message, because everywhere you look there’s sadness, and bad things happening, so I think it does uplift people and it makes them actually, for a moment, escape the world. And I also think that our show is very diverse – not just in the people you’re seeing on screen, but their backgrounds, and what they believe in. In our show, the point is not to argue about our beliefs and what’s right. The point is to show that people who have different beliefs and who come from different backgrounds can be friends and can hang out, and it doesn’t have to be this constant struggle.
Which was your favorite friend story of last year?
I really loved the Fliss character because she’s so fun, and she came back a couple of times. I like that we bring people back. It’s good to work with the actors again, and I think it’s fun for the audience to be like, “oh, I remember them.” So she was one of my favorites. But, I like that they’re all pretty uniquely different. We’re writing these stories and somehow they all feel very original. They all feel like realistic people, but also a story we haven’t heard before, and that’s pretty cool. And that has continued to be the case for season two so far. So, our writers are doing a really good job of keeping it fresh, but also following the template they have to follow. It makes it fun for us too.
Going into this season, do you have any character from season one you’d like to make a return?
We did bring somebody back already who is from season one and my character never did interact with them, but now Cara does, and that’s kind of fun. But, yeah, I mean I’ve had a fun time on set with everyone, so I’m happy with anyone who comes back.
Do you have anyone out of the main cast you wish you could have more scenes with this season?
I mean, I love working with Rachel Bay Jones, so, I’d love to have more Cara and her mom scenes. Just because she’s a really cool person, and I love working with little Liv, Eleanor [Koski], she’s great. So yeah, some family stuff would be fun.
I know last season you and I talked about the cast hanging out together off set. Does that still happen?
Oh my gosh, yes. They all came over to my house for a housewarming last night. We hang out all the time. It’s special that we all get along and that we enjoy each other’s company and there’s no tension or anything like that, because that’s not always the case. It really does show in the work and it just makes your life that much easier.
Do you have any other projects coming up that fans can be on the lookout for?
Right now this is keeping me pretty busy, but we premiere on the 29th, and we’re filming through March, but yeah, just tell them to stay tuned and get ready for season two.
I like ending with an easy question – what’s your current favorite book, favorite song, and favorite TV show out there?
Oh man. Ok, current favorite TV show is Boardwalk Empire. It’s so good, and one of our makeup artists on the show worked on it. Current favorite song is Boarderline by Tame Impala. Favorite book…let’s see what’s on my shelf. Oh, Milk and Honey is great. By Rupi Kaur.
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