Don’t be surprised if Hannah Waddingham and Juno Temple stop talking about how much they love each other. It won’t mean the affection and mutual admiration has expired; it would just be a way to protect what’s sacred between the frequent scene partners.
“She and I have gone more and more insular about our relationship because if you talk about it too much, it can never do justice to what she and I have found together as human beings,” says Waddingham on the heels of Ted Lasso‘s Emmy nomination haul of 20 nods, including one apiece for Waddingham and Temple for playing team owner Rebecca Welton and lovable publicist Keeley Jones, respectively.
In any other show, their characters could have become bitter rivals or been forced to claw their way out of petty catfights. But on the sanguine Apple TV+ hit, they became confidants and supporters of one another as Welton chatted up a mysterious beau in Toheeb Jimoh’s Sam while Jones built up her career and navigated romantic minefields. Season two ended with Jones setting off to open her own publicity firm while receiving advice (through tear-filled eyes) from her boss: “Hire your best friend.”
Of their chemistry, onscreen and off, Temple explains, “It’s not fake. It’s real. I love her so much, and what we have is a safe place. It’s so important to put out into the world that girlfriends are the most important people in your life. Ultimately, they keep the world spinning.”
Waddingham teases that she and her BFF have already filmed some memorable scenes together for season three. “If we get last-minute horrific rewrites, like we did recently, she and I lock in and are like, ‘Right, we’ve totally got this,’ ” says the actress, who won her first Emmy in 2021 for the show’s first season. “We finished a scene the other day and Juno went, ‘My whole body is shaking.’ I said, ‘That’s because this is real, and it bleeds into Keeley and Rebecca.’ ”
This story first appeared in a July stand-alone issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.