“Salem” is a new series that debuts Sunday, April 20th on WGN America, and the drama is loosely based on the infamous witch trials of the late 1600`s. An entire village was created for the show, but it`s not in Massachusetts where you`ll find the actual town of Salem. This Hollywood set is located just outside Shreveport, LA.
“I couldn’t believe it. I thought there were going to be like maybe 3 or 4 houses there,” Iddo Goldberg (“Isaac Walton”) said.
“We’ve got about 35 sets or structures, then another 6 or so that are interiors,” production designer Seth Reed said.
The entire set was built to try and recreate 17th century Salem, but it was no easy task. More than 100 carpenters spent months trying to make it as authentic as possible. And their work paid off, because it was that exterior set that really brought Salem to life for the actors.
“One of my biggest fears coming into the show was – how do you appear to be in the 1690’s? What is that mindset? And then, when we got here and looked around, it was so easy to imagine being in that time because we felt like we were,” Seth Gabel (“Cotton Mather”) said.
“I was blown away. I couldn’t believe it just because, you work on so many sets that you know it’s going to look fine, but it’s just like a flat sort of backdrop or whatever. So to actually have this town that was built – it made me really excited,” Janet Montgomery (“Mary Sibley”) said.
“I think, for every single person that went there on the first day, we were just walking around with our bottom lip kind of scraping the floor,” Goldberg said.
According to Reed, every detail of the set is historically accurate.
“We’ve got a fully developed town with wonderful exteriors, a lot of great architecture, all of it meticulously researched. If you watch the series, the set will evolve every week. We add new pieces and parts. It looks different every single week,” Reed said.
“Salem” premieres Sunday, April 20th at 9 P.M. on WGN America.