When Emily VanCamp spoke to Culture mid last-year, her show Revenge hadn't even been confirmed for a second series. But she was hopeful that the breakout hit would get a chance to return.
"It's been a bit of a whirlwind, this whole year," she said, on the phone during a quick promotional visit to Sydney. "The fact there's been such an amazing response worldwide . . . it's more than you can really ask for. It's wonderful."
Revenge has of course made it to an all-important second season, which begins with a two-hour special on TV2 this Tuesday.
It has become somewhat of a runaway success, appealing not only to its young, female target audience, but also stretching further than that to older viewers who love the heightened mix of drama, intrigue and glamour.
VanCamp's character Emily Thorne isn't immediately likeable, exacting fierce revenge on those who brought about the downfall of her beloved father, but she says fans have warmed to her nonetheless.
"I absolutely love playing her. That's what drew me to the script, I just wanted to do something completely different and challenging and I just kind of fell in love with her. Immediately I was rooting for her and thought, well, if I'm rooting for her then hopefully we'll find an audience that's rooting for her as well.
"I was certainly nervous in the beginning that people would immediately turn on her because she's doing all these horrible things but she's doing them to even worse people. I think once you see her backstory and where she's been and what these people put her through, it's kind of hard not to root for her and not to want to see her succeed in this quest for revenge."
It's a refreshing change to many of the roles petite, blonde, attractive VanCamp often gets offered.
"The damsel in distress? Yeah, I find that quite boring," she says. "There's a time and a place for that kind of character but at the same time, when you're going to possibly play a character for years then you want to make sure that it's something that you really connect with and identify with on some level. Emily certainly is that.
"I'm nothing like her but that keeps it interesting for me. I'm constantly challenged and it's always surprising, every script there's a new element, something new that comes along that challenges me, that excites me, so hopefully that will keep up."
With the huge success of Revenge, VanCamp has also found her fame has increased immensely. She gets recognised by fans often, and is now a target of paparazzi and gossip magazines. It's not something she enjoys.
"I find all of that gossipy stuff a bit boring," she laughs. "I've managed to stay quite private my whole career and that's something I value so much and the fact that people are prying a lot more now has been a bit challenging for me. I'm just trying to figure out how to navigate through that."
Emily Thorne could no doubt give her some good tips.
Revenge, Tuesday, 8.30pm, TV2
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