Christina Hendricks Reflects on Working on ‘The Buccaneers’ (Exclusive)


For Christina Hendricks, landing the new period drama The Buccaneers could not have come at a better time.

After the cancellation of her last show, Good Girls, the actress craved a change — and playing the mother of two debutantes in 1870s London offered just that.

“I had been doing scenes with guns, shaking out crime, and being in big trash cans. After that, I just wanted to sit somewhere in a corset with a teacup. It felt exactly right,” Hendricks, 48, tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue of working on Apple TV+’s Edith Wharton adaptation.

Adam James and Christina Hendricks in ‘The Buccaneers’ on Apple TV+.

Angus Pigott / Apple TV+ / Courtesy Everett

While The Buccaneers is based on Wharton’s final novel, the show takes a unique and updated approach with its source material.

“We’ve got a very modern, fresh take on it,” the actress explains. “There was some freedom there with our mannerisms and behavior. Every day brought just more sort of beautiful things to look at and get to experience and to step into that world.”

Those “beautiful things” included the show’s elaborate “costume world,” which was a “dream” for the actress. While The Buccaneers presented Hendricks with several opportunities to wear intricate period costumes, her favorite remains a fitted rose pink gown worn in episode four, entitled “Homecoming,” in which several members of the cast, including Nan St. George (Kristine Froseth) and Jinny St. George (Imogen Waterhouse) return to New York.

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“It was really fun to collaborate on that, because originally I think the idea was to put her in these reds, blacks and very strong, almost vampiric kind of colors, and I said, ‘I really want Mrs. St. George to feel like a crushed rose in this,'” Hendricks recalls. “’I want her to feel fragile, vulnerable and girly, and actually quite different.’ … I thought they accomplished it beautifully.”

Imogen Waterhouse, Christina Hendricks and Simone Kirby in ‘The Buccaneers’ on Apple TV+.

Angus Pigott / Apple TV+ / Courtesy Everett

The Mad Men alum also enjoyed the show’s soundtrack, which features original contemporary tracks from artists like Miya Folick, Lucius, Warpaint and Bully. The choice of musicians delighted Hendricks, who counts herself a “huge” Warpaint fan.

“[The soundtrack] really gives a particular mood, and I thought they chose exactly the right times when to use certain pieces,” she says. “Using that kind of modern music … without having to stray historically or technically too much, it’s just this really nice balance.”

For more on Christina Hendricks, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday, or subscribe here. 

The Buccaneers airs Wednesdays on Apple TV+.

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