An Interview With Clare Gillies Of Amazon Freevee’s ‘Sprung’

by Rachel Bellwoar

Fans of Greg Garcia’s other comedies, Raising Hope and My Name Is Earl, will see plenty of familiar faces in his latest comedy, Sprung, about how the pandemic effects some prisoners who get early release. For Clare Gillies, however, Wiggles — the ex-girlfriend of Phillip Garcia’s Rooster — will be her first major role. Find out what Gillies had to say about filming the first season below.

Photo Credit: Dennis Mong/Amazon Freevee

Rachel Bellwoar: How does your character on Sprung compare to other characters you’ve played, and what excites you the most about the role?

Clare Gillies: Sprung was my first acting job (outside of commercials and some friends’ projects), so I don’t have much to compare it to. That being said Wiggles is an absolute dream to me — she’s so fun and sweet and she dresses with complete and total confidence. It’s so much fun to be her.

RB: Is there anything you do to get into character before shooting a scene?

CG: Yes! I listen to a Wiggles playlist and depending on the scene I may just listen to one song on repeat. I also dance to get loose/ in my body.

RB: What was the audition process like for this series?

CG: I have two managers who are absolute gem treasure magic unicorns. When they saw the breakdown for Wiggles… they were like “this is you!”. I did an audition tape and then I magically had a callback… my first callback… with Greg Garcia (!!!!!) which was such a positive experience. After that I got offered the role and we all cried. Or maybe I just cried.

Photo Credit: Dennis Mong/Amazon Freevee

RB: What do you think sets a Greg Garcia show apart from other comedies?

CG: I think Greg Garcia does a really great job of making you love and treasure the simple things. I’d say the series is shot very differently — it has a more cinematic and dramatic look than your average 30 min sitcom. Also we’re Amazon Freevee’s first original comedy series!

RB: Overall it feels like TV has tried to avoid addressing the pandemic. Maybe it did in the beginning and every once in a while a character will make a reference to the coronavirus now, but considering the impact the pandemic has had behind the scenes, you wouldn’t necessarily know it onscreen (though there are some notable exceptions). How does it feel to be part of a show that’s so current and relevant in its subject matter?

CG: Honestly it feels great!! The pandemic is not the main topic but rather a backdrop of Sprung, which I think makes it tasteful and at times cathartic. You can watch these characters being themselves and navigating those very beginning months of COVID when we, as a collective, had no idea what was going on!

RB: How was filming in Pennsylvania?

CG: It was great. I’m from the East Coast and it was nice to be back to have a little bit of fall/winter. It was also just nice to get to shoot and live in another state for a while. Pittsburgh was charming and cinematic 🙂

RB: Were you able to have any input when it comes to your character’s hair and wardrobe?

CG: Yes!! We essentially shot 10 episodes in 10 weeks, so there wasn’t much time for look changes. That was a challenge because I wanted to do the MOST. I chose all of my hairstyles, makeup, wigs, nails etc. In fact I took care of my own press-on nails everyday, because I felt Wiggles wouldn’t be caught dead without a fun nail.

RB: I will definitely keep an eye out for Wiggles’ nails going forward [I’ve seen the pilot]! Thanks for agreeing to this interview, Clare!

The first two episodes of Sprung start streaming August 19th on Amazon Freevee (formerly known as IMDB TV).

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