Go Behind the Scenes of Hulu's '11.22.63' With James Franco and Stephen King
By Zach Seemayer
If you could travel back in time to change one historical event, what would it be? Now what if the past didn't want to be changed?
In Hulu's upcoming eight-part event series11.22.63, the stark consequences and insurmountable challenges of time travel are the captivating focus of this dynamic sci-fi thrill ride.
Before the series kicks off, Hulu is taking viewers behind the scenes to see what went in to making the historical thriller, and what's in store for those who want to take a journey back to the America of yesteryear.
11.22.63, based on the novel by horror master Stephen King, tells the story of an ordinary school teacher named Jake Epping (James Franco) who gets recruited by his friend Al (Chris Cooper) to travel back in time via a mysterious portal in the back of Al's diner.
Jake finds himself in the late '50s with a very important mission: Stop the assassination of John F. Kennedy by any means necessary.
["He's] a character who could be any one of us, who suddenly is in the most extraordinary situation," shares Executive Producer J.J. Abrams. "You just know he's going to be up against incredible odds. Not the least of which is time, which is sort of an enemy in the course of the show."
As King explains, "The past doesn't want to be changed."
Jake must overcome some extraordinarily tough obstacles in his journey towards saving the life of President Kennedy. From facing down infamous assassin Lee Harvey Oswald (Daniel Webber) to combatting the forces of the space-time continuum itself, his objective is herculean.
And that's all before Jake falls in love.
As Jake spends years in the past, meticulously contemplating and plotting how to stop Oswald and prevent the assassination, he slowly finds himself falling for a young woman named Sadie Dunhill (Sarah Gadon).
Although Jake's story isn't the only tale to be told. 11.22.63 also shines a light into the tense and fiery lives of Oswald and his wife, Marina (Lucy Fry).
"The public has a perception of what time of man Lee Harvey Oswald was and we got to dive into imagination, a bit, of what their lives might have been really like," shares Webber, reflecting on his infamous character.
While 11.22.63 is an exciting, sci-fi romp across time, it manages to remain fascinating by grounding itself in the hard, historical facts of the past, and the series strived for accuracy.
"What we're doing is fiction, but we want to get the details right," explains Executive Producer Bridget Carpenter. "Honor the past to tell a good story