Krysten Ritter Says Fans Shouldn’t Compare ‘Orphan Black’ With ‘Echoes’ Spin-Off

“Orphan Black” may have ended in 2017, but its new spin-off “Orphan Black: Echoes” picks things up over three decades later in the year 2052 — and that’s not the only major difference between the sci-fi sister series.

Ahead of Sunday’s premiere, executive producer and star Krysten Ritter told TheWrap all about how the “Echoes” team wove the original “Orphan Black” into their show’s DNA while intentionally trying not to make an exact clone… er, printout of the beloved flagship.

“It’s so hard to launch shows; there’s so many shows, there’s so many platforms. So I thought business-savvy-wise, it’s very smart to have a built-in fanbase and a spin-off of such a successful world that was so loved,” she said. “From a performing standpoint, this is entirely its own thing. It’s apples and oranges. We’re set in that world and there’s easter eggs and exciting things for fans of the original, but it really is its own story.”

“The structure of the show is different, because I’m not playing eight characters like Tatiana [Maslany] did so beautifully. It’s a whole new world you can be dropped right into,” Ritter added of her new AMC show. “I liked the original. I thought it was so good and so well done, so ahead of its time when it came out. And just a gorgeous performance.”

While there’s no Clone Club this time around — apart from the “rabid fanbase,” as the “Don’t Trust the B–h in Apartment 23” star put it — creator Anna Fishko’s sequel series does sport a stellar supporting cast of Keeley Hawes, Amanda Fix, Avan Jogia, Liam Diaz, Jonathan Whittaker, Zariella Langford-Haughton and Reed Diamond, among others.

Still, Ritter does play double duty as both leading actress and EP. But which does she prefer?

Krysten Ritter in Orphan Black: Echoes
Krysten Ritter as Lucy in Orphan Black: Echoes (Photo Credit: Sophie Giraud/AMC)

“I do so much stuff: I wrote a book, I have another one coming out, I’m directing. And everyone asks, what do you like better? To me, it all feels like the same thing, it’s just the medium is slightly different,” she said. “Storytelling, full immersion, diving in … it all blends together and feels like the same thing. Creativity first, medium second.”

As Ritter steps into more roles behind the camera, she couldn’t help but pay tribute to the network as she returns 15 years after playing a key character in another iconic AMC series: “Breaking Bad.”

“I really like AMC and I always thought that they’ve had such a classy, prestige, small slate. So I’m thrilled to be at AMC again and hope to be at AMC many more times,” she said.

Krysten Ritter
Krysten Ritter, “Orphan Black: Echoes”

Then there’s another one of Ritter’s most recognizable roles of Jessica Jones in the Netflix Marvel series. Could she reprise the role now that “Daredevil” is getting “Born Again”?

“If the opportunity were to present itself, I would be thrilled,” she admitted of possibly rejoining the Marvel universe. “I love the character, beyond.”

“I am so fortunate to have had such great parts, and I feel so lucky. My body of work is something I’m so proud of and I always like to change it up,” the actress said. “I get lucky because I’m dark and I’m a little weird, I get to play dark, fun characters. I feel very grateful.”

But ultimately, Ritter is just excited for people to be able to step back into the world of “Orphan Black.” “We’re hoping that the fans are along for a very fun ride,” she concluded. “We’re very proud of these 10 episodes and are happy that they’re finally coming out.”

“Orphan Black: Echoes” premieres Sunday on AMC, BBC America and AMC+.

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