Saint X – West Duchovny & Jayden Elijah | Exclusive Interview
Recently, I got to speak to West Duchovny and Jayden Elijah, who star in the brand new psychological drama series called “Saint X,” which is told via multiple timelines and perspectives, explores and upends the girl-gone-missing genre. It’s a show about how a young woman’s mysterious death during an idyllic Caribbean vacation creates a traumatic ripple effect that eventually pulls her surviving sister into a dangerous pursuit of the truth.
What attracted you to your roles in “Saint X”?
West – I think that Alison’s such a meaty character. She’s so complex and relatable and cringey and wonderful and lovable and she has all these qualities that I think are, they’re so much to take and to run with, and I think the challenge that was fun about it was I got for Alison, I got eight days to show who she was. After that, she becomes this sort of mythical kind of person who’s assumptions and everyone else is defining her identity. So that was fun for me, it was like, I got to do her justice in eight days.
Jayden – What attracted me to Edwin, I think, whew, he is, yeah, a character with so much meat and depth and darkness, and I’d say righteous indignation and playing him, allowed me to explore a lot of the feelings that I have had growing up in London and seeing how London has changed under many things that we won’t get into right now, but exploring what those similar feelings could be if extrapolated to another island in another time period, in another person.
Jayden, without going into spoilers, there are some interesting themes throughout the series, how difficult were some of those scenes?
How hard was it? I tell you what, I think because the book had so much depth and was about themes that were so and all so pertinent to my life as was a script, so full of depth and everything. I kind of just did my homework, whatever I needed to do to prepare and then the words did the rest for me or the situation did the rest for me and the themes did the rest for me. When you’re exploring such heavy themes as race, racism, colonialism, and prejudices of many kinds, it’s kind of just there so that very much still helps me.
West, what was your biggest challenge working on the series?
I think it all centered around what I said about having only these eight days, and I think that there are ways in which Alison could veer, slightly unlikable, and I think my challenge was just to show the humanity in her, which it was definitely in the writing, but I wanted it to be clear that she was just this, at the end of the day, she’s just this 19 year old girl, and she gets scrutinized in really unfair ways, she makes mistakes, she’s ignorant, but she’s also a wonderful sister. She’s curious. She wants to do something with her life. So I think just trying my best within those eight days to put all of that in there. That was the challenge for me, yeah.
How did you enjoy working in the Dominican Republic?
Jayden: Yeah, amazing place, amazing people, amazing culture, a deep history, which was quite interesting to draw from for this particular show. And the food, again, I keep on coming to this in all these interviews, the mangoes. The mangoes were so insane, there’s so many different types of mangoes. Different textures like sweet to not sweet, crisp or not crisp.
West: Yeah, I mean I think to live in that kind of environment for a good chunk of the year was such a eye-opening experience. I mean it’s so beautiful, but it also poses its challenges. It’s really hot, it’s really humid. You’re walking on soft sand all day. So I think it was hard, but it was so fulfilling and like Jayden said, the people were so welcoming and the environment was just to die for.
What was the highlight for you for working on “Saint X”?
Jayden: Wow. The highlight was working on a show that had something to say. Not only was it entertaining and not only is it entertaining and full of twists and turns, but these twists and turns, they mean something. And hopefully the ripple effect of what we show the audience and cause the audience to do and think and change about themselves is positive and will help people in the future. That is being part of something that significant felt like a blessing every day.
West: Agreed. The same thing. I think that art is supposed to make people uncomfortable and make people think and make people consider issues that are relevant to the real world. And I think that this show does that in such an incredible way. It lures you in with the thriller, but then once you’re sitting down it slams you with these issues that are really important to think about and to be a part of that was such a privilege.
The first three episodes of “Saint X” are out now on Hulu in the United States and on Disney+ in Canada, with new episodes being released weekly. The series will also be released on Disney+ in the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and other countries on June 7th 2023.
Are you looking forward to watching “Saint X”? Let us know on social media!