Patricia Arquette Was Forced Into Lockdown Five Times While Filming ‘Claustrophobic’ Series ‘Severance’


“That was a weird pressure I’ve never felt in acting before,” Arquette said of worrying about COVID on set.

Patricia Arquette wanted to sever herself during the COVID-19 production lockdowns.

The Emmy-nominated “Severance” star revealed that she was forced into quarantine five times while filming the AppleTV+ series, helmed by Ben Stiller.

“I got put in lockdown like five times so I spent like two and a half months alone on top of normal lockdown,” Arquette exclusively told IndieWire during the 2022 Gotham Awards. “We were shooting during COVID before you could get shots and there’s one scene where I’m yelling at Natalie [Sydney Cole Alexander], I’m very, very close to her, and I’m like, ‘Ehh.’ I know we’re testing, I know I’m not going anywhere at night, but I’m like, ‘What if I got this girl sick? What if she got really sick?’ That was a weird pressure I’ve never felt in acting before.”

Arquette continued, “I never worried about something like that. So that was a very strange thing. And it was weird, we didn’t get to joke with the crew in the same way or hang out in that same way, so the show is very claustrophobic and the experience of filming it was very claustrophobic.”

Adam Scott, Zach Cherry, Britt Lower, John Turturro, Tramell Tillman, and Christopher Walken also star alongside Arquette in “Severance” as employees of mysterious corporation Lumon. Heralded as the best new show of the year, “Severance” was renewed for a second season following its Emmy wins.

“It’s really exciting to see the response from people who are loving the show — and the level of fan engagement,” director Stiller said. “It has been a long road bringing ‘Severance’ to television. I first read Dan’s pilot over five years ago. It has always been a multi-season story, and I’m really happy we get to continue it. I’m grateful to our partners at Apple TV+ who have been behind it the whole way. Praise Kier!”

Matt Cherniss, head of programming for Apple TV+, added, “Thanks to creator Dan Erickson, the brilliant Ben Stiller, and an incomparable cast and crew, ‘Severance’ has imagined an existence that‘s equal parts riveting and enthralling as viewers around the globe can’t get enough of these rich characters. We’re excited to go deeper into this wholly unique world and unpack more layers of Lumon in Season 2.”

The series is written and created by Dan Erickson, making his small-screen debut and bringing his own corporate background to the story. Read IndieWire’s rave review of the first season here.

Reporting by Vincent Perella. 

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