“I would prefer a strong reaction than ambivalence”: Ashley Madekwe and Jorden Myrie on The Strays
This dark and gripping thriller from filmmaker and director Nathanial Martello-White explores the themes of Black identity and family trauma through a story that constantly evolves to keep viewers on the edge of their seats. Taking inspiration from a slew of horror movies and psychological dramas, The Strays leans into a style of storytelling that pays homage to this particular genre, whilst also being partly inspired by a true story of a biracial mother who made some heart-wrenching decisions.
A young woman called Cheryl (Ashley Madekwe), down on her luck on an impoverished council estate, turns her back on her life, runs away from everything she knows and reinvents herself as Neve, a wealthy suburban mother and wife with leadership skills and a huge, important charity gala to organise. Two strangers enter her life, taunting her and involving themselves with her children, until it all comes to blows and a tragic secret comes to the surface, changing the family dynamic forever.
The Upcoming had the pleasure of speaking to BAFTA-nominated actress Ashley Madekwe about her dual role as Cheryl and Neve. She described what it was like to bring this unusual situation to the screen and portray a woman turning her back on her Black identity and disowning her family. We also chatted to Jorden Myrie about his formidable character in the thriller, how he prepared for such an intense role, and what it was like working with the visionary director and ensemble cast (which includes Bukky Bakray as his on-screen sibling).
The Strays is released on Netflix on 22nd February 2023.
Watch the trailer for The Strays here: