Wendy Crewson: Women need to see strong female characters on TV

2018-06-08 22:00

Cape Town – Canadian actress Wendy Crewson stars in the new all-female police procedural The Detail on Universal TV (DStv 117).

The acclaimed actress needs no introduction as her resume features more than 100 titles including the Oscar nominated drama Room with Brie Larson. 

Wendy was recently in South Africa at a press junket for the new series.

This is not the first time she has been in the country as she starred in the 2011 Winnie Mandela film starring Jennifer Hudson. 

During a telephone interview with Channel24 Wendy said she was thrilled and blessed to be back.  

“We shot the Winnie Mandela film in Johannesburg and Soweto. We travelled all around. I was here for quite a while and I got to see so much of the country. I’ll tell you it is one of my favourite places.”

(Wendy at the Lion and Safari Park in Hartbeespoort.)  


The Detail follows the professional and personal lives of three various ranking Homicide Detectives. 

Detective Jacqueline "Jack" Cooper (Shenae Grimes-Beech) is an iconoclastic, street-smart rookie with savant investigative skills. Her mentor, Detective Stevie Hall (Angela Griffin) is an experienced interrogator. Overseen by their larger-than-life boss, Staff Inspector Fiona Currie (Crewson) is the formidable head of the unit. 

Speaking about how she got involved in the series Wendy says that she was approached by the producer six years ago.

“She came to me and she said, ‘I have an idea to do this police procedural that is all female led what do you think?’. And I said, ‘it sounds spectacular’. We kept at it and miracle on miracle it came to be.”

She continues: “I was drawn to it because I am awfully drawn to a strong female lead and this one had three of them. This was a very special one and I was thrilled to be able to do it.”

For Wendy it is especially important in this climate that women see themselves as leaders. 

“This is a female led drama in a niche pin. So it feels like you're on the cusp of a movement, that finally women are stepping forward. This is what women want to watch and I am thrilled to be giving it to them.”

What she loves about her character Fiona is that she is bossy, “I loved the fact that she was in this very male military dominated field and that she was the boss.”

“What she said goes and she does it with authority and confidence. I just love seeing women in charge. I also loved the idea that she was a mentor to the other women. Now that she made it to the top she reaches down to help women go forward in the organisation,” Wendy adds.


Wendy hit it off instantly with her co-stars Shenae and Angela. 

“We were all just so happy to be there. Unlike the typical drama where you have the women who are wives and girlfriends – secondary to the male characters. And in those situations they are always there to support the men.”

She continues: “We didn’t need to support and cajole. We could just be ourselves. We were all on the same page.”

In the series the crimes and cases reflect the challenges the women are going through in their own personal lives like in the first episode which had the theme of betrayal and infidelity. 

“We will see that continue in the episodes and it also reflects on the way that women solve crimes. We have a different psychological process in the solving of crimes and I think the cases help demonstrate that,” says Wendy. 

And what does she hope viewers take away from the show?

“I hope they’ll see three strong women balancing work and life issues and see that it is possible for women to do it all. I hope women will see their own lives no matter what they do reflected in that.”


(Click here to watch it on Facebook)

Catch The Detail Tuesdays at at 20:00 on Universal TV (DStv 117).

(Photos: Mariska van den Brink/NBC Universal)

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