Warning: This post contains details from Prime Video’s “Daisy Jones & The Six” Episode 8.
While the latest episode of “Daisy Jones & The Six” marked a turning point onscreen for Daisy (Riley Keough) and Billy (Sam Claflin), behind-the-scenes it was “emotionally challenging” to shoot, Keough reveals as the cast and crew dive into its significance.
At the end of episode 8, Billy Dunne finds Daisy passed out on the floor of a hotel shower from a drug overdose, then, moments later, she wakes up in his arms, the screen cuts to black and the credits begin to roll.
The scene “puts the two of them on a different trajectory going forward,” executive producer Brad Mendelsohn told Deadline, given that, up until the emotional scene, Daisy and Billy tried to avoid the bound-to-happen clash they set out for one another.
Leading up to the scene, Daisy had just returned from Greece with her new fiancé Nicky, but when she hits the road again with the band, she further derails. Billy was ready to kick her out of the group but couldn’t resist what occurred on stage that night- performing their impassioned song “Look At Us Now”, despite the track having been off limits on their world tour.
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After, when Nicky opens the hotel door, Billy immediately notices something isn’t right and rushes into the room, where he finds Daisy unresponsive in the bathroom. While he tries to revive her, Nicky attempts to run.
The scene, which Mendelsohn said is “so revealing for both of their characters,” was adapted differently onscreen than how it occurred in Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novel, which instead sees Nicky wake her up in the shower after overdosing in Italy.
While in both versions the scene acts as a catalyst for Daisy to get her act together, the TV version also serves another purpose, according to creator, Scott Neustadter.
“For us, it was really getting to witness Daisy going overboard and having some of that behaviour come back to haunt her, which it always does. And then on the other side of it, it was watching Billy see that maybe he’s going to lose her and what that would do to him — would it crystallize for him how important she is to him?” Neustadter explained. “Because… in that episode he’s like, ‘I don’t need her. She’s bad for me. She’s bad for us. I’m the Billy Dunne who can do it all by myself.’ And then he’s faced with the possibility that she wouldn’t be around anymore. I really loved seeing him realize that that wasn’t true.”
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Meanwhile, the actors recounted what it was like to shoot the scene.
Keough described it as being “emotionally challenging,” while Claflin noted that “nothing was really scripted.”
“I knew what the beats were, and knew where I had to get positionally for a camera, but like everything else was just organic,” he told Deadline.
“I’d had a really busy, hectic day of the scenes, but it was that thing that was sort of looming over us. It was right at the end of the day. I’ll never forget,” Claflin continued. “The atmosphere on set was very quiet. During that day, I think everyone was just very sensitive of the moment that we’re trying to depict authentically. Generally speaking, it’s a very, very emotionally charged but also physically difficult scene to have to shoot.”
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As for what Keough thought of the onscreen adaptation’s alteration from the novel, the actress said she “loved” it.
“I thought that it was so deeply emotional to have Billy find Daisy and Billy be the one who is there for her in that moment and not Nicky. That sort of says a lot of the things that they can’t say to each other, that Billy can’t say to Daisy,” she explained.
The first eight episodes of “Daisy Jones & The Six” are available to stream on Prime Video. The final two episodes will drop on the streamer on March 24.