Yellowjackets Melanie Lynskey shares how younger Shauna shaped her character

Yellowjackets star Melanie Lynskey has opened up on what has shaped her character in the show.

Lynskey plays Shauna Shipman in the Showtime series, which follows the story of a girls' soccer team who have to fend for themselves after their plane crashes in the Canadian wilderness in 1996. The series flicks between the past and the present and shows the group being pushed to extreme lengths in order to stay alive, going as far as cannibalism.

Speaking exclusively to Digital Spy, Lynskey explained how she and Sophie Nélisse (who plays the teenage version of Shauna) had approached their portrayal of the character.

yellowjackets star melanie lynskey, in character as shauna, stands in a forest with her right hand resting on a tree trunk
Showtime/Brendan Meadows

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"We didn’t make any decisions together about performance or anything like that," Lynskey said, when asked if the pair had worked together on Shauna's characterisation.

The actress went on to explain that she enjoys being able to see the younger version of her character and everything she experienced, adding that it adds depth to her own portrayal of an adult Shauna.

"It’s a wonderful thing to have this kind of televised backstory, and to see so much of the character’s history," she continued.

"I think it adds so many layers when you’re watching the adult versions because you understand what they’ve been through."

yellowjackets, season 2

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"But also, it’s hard if we don’t know that history," the actress added, revealing that she encourages the writers to give her as much detail as possible.

"If the writers know, I encourage them to tell me. I just say, 'You have to be so specific with me. I really want to know'."

Meanwhile, Lynskey has also shared her thoughts on the identity of the show's mysterious Antler Queen as well as her character's traumatic labour scene in season two.

Yellowjackets season 2 airs on Showtime in the US and Paramount+ in the UK.

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