“Salem” preview: Behind the scenes of WGN America’s new original series

By, Heather Warner

WGN America is about to take you into the most notorious witch trials of the 17th century with its first original scripted series appropriately called, “Salem.”  The production of the Tribune-backed drama takes place in Shreveport, Louisiana, on an expansive set which includes an elaborate village complete with shops, a church, a town square, an orphanage, and homes of those living in “Salem.”

The drama is based largely on the historical events of the past, and includes many real characters  from that volatile time period. The creators of the show took much care in making sure the time period is well represented on the set, and in the wardrobe.

In “Salem”, Louisiana, witches are real, but they are not who, or what they seem. The series is full of romance, suspense, panic, hysteria, and plenty of twists.

“Salem” stars Janet Montgomery (“Human Target, “Made in Jersey”) as Mary Sibley, Shane West (“Nikita,” ER”) as John Alden, Seth Gabell (“Fringe”) as Cotton Mather, Xander Berkeley (“Nikita,” “The Mentalist”) as Magistrate Hale, Ashley Madekwe (“Revenge”) as Tituba, Tamzin Merchant (“Jane Eyre”) as Anne Hale, Elise Eberle (“The Astronaut Farmer”) as Mercy Lewis and Iddo Goldberg (“Mob City”) as Isaac Walton.

Award-winning writer/producer Brannon Braga (“24,” “Star Trek: The Next Generation, Voyager and Enterprise”) created, executive-produced and wrote “Salem”, alongside Adam Simon (“The Haunting in Connecticut”).

“Salem” premieres on WGN America on April 20, 2014.

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Cast on Twitter:
Shane West: @shanewest_1
Seth Gabel: @sethgabel
Ashley Madekwe: @smashleybell
Elise Eberle: @eliseeberle
Tamzin Merchant: @tamzinmerchant