The following article contains major spoilers for FROM, including Season 2, Episode 3, “Tether.”
Ontario native Chloe Van Landschoot is back as Kristi in FROM, the hit mystery box show from MGM+ that began its second season last month. Shot in Nova Scotia with a majority-Canadian cast, the series follows a community trapped in a mysterious town that is ravaged by monsters when the sun goes down. Last season’s cliffhanger introduced a bus full of new faces, and this week’s episode saw Kristi, the town medic, facing the repercussions head on. Watch Van Landschoot break down this week’s episode and more in our full video interview above!
Born in Grimsby, Ontario, Van Landschoot discovered a love for acting and dancing while simultaneously pursuing a career in medicine. In between shifts as a nurse, she would take auditions and film self-tapes. However, her life as an actor was put on hold when the pandemic began, thrust into the overwhelming hospital environment day in and day out. Amidst the whirlwind, Van Landschoot was invited to audition for FROM as Kristi, a third-year med student who becomes the town medic. The role was simply too real to pass up.
Van Landschoot’s experience has greatly informed the character of Kristi, but nowhere has this felt more resonant than in this past week’s episode, “Tether.” When Ellis (Corteon Moore) and Kenny (Ricky He) discover Kelly (Phoebe Rex), a new arrival who is left with a pole jammed through her head after an encounter with the town’s nightbound monsters, Kristi is summoned to comfort her. However, the relief is temporary; when the pole is taken out of her head, Kelly dies.
“I have had to be a part of ending someone’s life,” explains Van Landschoot. She has goosebumps recalling the experience shooting Kelly’s scenes. “There was a lot coming up for me, and I was worried that I was going to blow my cannon, [which] wouldn’t be right for the scene. She needs to maintain her composure, to a certain degree. Kristi’s taking her time, in a way, because she doesn’t want to admit that she has to do this.”
Amidst the show’s relentless trauma, Kelly’s death feels especially shocking despite less horror fanfare. Unlike other character deaths, which are typically caused by the show’s antagonists, this one is at the hands of the characters despite their best attempts. “Watching these very human characters try to figure out what the f**k to do here is super real. They’ve acclimatized to the trauma and the relentlessness of this place, but there’s something about the torture of [Kelly’s death], the “finishing the job,” that we haven’t seen yet.”
Confronting the scene’s brutal truth to her own experiences gave Van Landschoot the confidence to meld both her identity as a nurse and her identity as a performer. “I was like, ‘oh, I don’t have to act or really think too much about this. Just be brave and trust that you’ve actually kind of lived this, in a way, so just let it take care of itself.’ I think that vulnerability is that marriage that we see of who I am and who I am as a nurse.”
Watch Chloe Van Landschoot discuss more about Kelly’s death, Kristi’s evolving relationships with fiancee Marielle and sheriff Kenny, as well as her new short film, TIDAL, in our full interview on YouTube. A full transcript can be found below.
FROM airs every Sunday at 9pm ET on Paramount+. TIDAL is now available to stream on HighballTV.
Is the picture okay here, Larry? I know I’m vertical, but my iPad is…stupid.
As all iPads are.
Chloe Van Landschoot, welcome to That Shelf! How are you doing?
I’m great. How are you doing, Larry?
I’m doing really, really well, and we’re really excited to have you here to talk about a multitude of different things but starting with FROM. Season 2 just started – MGM+ in the United States, Paramount+ for our friends in Canada. It’s really exciting to see this show having a moment right now.
It feels like it was, sort of, an underdog show that began, it bounced around a few places, and now it has its home at MGM+ and Season 2 – I was able to watch a few episodes for this opportunity, and you can clearly see that the mystery box elements of the show are really expanding in major ways in comparison to the first season. You know, I know your story with FROM, when you were first auditioning, it was, sort of, a whirlwind plucked out of your pandemic nursing experience, going straight into this series regular show. Now that you have Season 2, and there’s rumblings of Season 3 already…
…but going into the second season, how did your mindset shift knowing that you were returning to a show that was starting to build an audience and that was really ready to expand.
Yeah. I think it’s incredible and there’s also a bit of added pressure to deliver, too, for the fans. I mean, we wouldn’t have a show unless it was for the fan base, right? And I think it was really amazing watching this whole community kind of start to grow as the season went on. There were all these Reddit threads being made and Facebook groups and people really coming together to try to figure out what the hell is going on in this play. So, the premise of the show garnered a lot of interest, and I think the character arcs as well and the humanity that’s behind a lot of them really helped audiences latch on to certain characters and root for them, which I think is really important if you want to have longevity in a show. And I think Season 2 does a really wonderful job of really, really starting to unpack a lot of that, those relationship dynamics, those internal worlds coming to the surface, and we really get to know our two casts in a way that we haven’t experienced yet.
It is really exciting to see a lot of the characters from Season 1 start to interact with a lot of the new faces that appear on the bus coming out of Season 2, especially for your character.
We have a brand-new relationship in the form of you and Marielle, who, of course, was your fiancée who was briefly mentioned in the first season. And that triangle, of sorts, with Kenny’s character as well makes for a really exciting dynamic that, even in the beginning of the season, we’re only just starting to get glimmers of what that’s going to look like. For you, what excited you the most about getting to have this brand new, fresh trio dynamic going into Season 2?
Yeah. I mean, a lot of people call this a “love triangle” or a triangle, and I don’t know if I resonate with that shape––
––in a way. It’s more about watching a character kind of figure out who they are, being met with someone from their past. Like, this is the first time we are seeing one of our characters have someone from their past enter. Not just anyone, their fiancée.
So, I think the really exciting part for me was getting to figure out how being in this town has changed Kristi. And it’s a lot more internal and nuanced than, like, the obvious relationship dynamics, but I think for me, going into that, I was starting to learn more about her based on how the writers were having her navigate these situations as well, which, to me, is really exciting. And the Kristi and Marielle dynamic is a new relationship. They do have history, but it is a new relationship. These two people were catapulted out of each other’s lives for an extended period of time and now they’re meeting back together. And I think the exciting part is seeing what’s stayed, what’s remained, what has left, and what has transformed. And I think Kenny, in a way, also holds a mirror to that as well because he’s Kristi’s reality for the past six months in terms of a mirror to what’s going on in this place. And Marielle is a mirror of the past. So, having all that kind of collide is … we get to learn more about Kristi, in a way.
It’s not so much all these love triangles, it’s more about people learning about how much people change, what stays, what goes, how love shifts, and yeah, I mean, the relationship between Kenny and Kristi is integral, too. I mean, when you’re stuck in a place dealing with relentless trauma, and you also have a lot of responsibility to the town and a lot of people rely on you, that’s Kenny and Kristi. They have really important jobs and there’s a visceral understanding that I think they have with one another. They really know how to take care of each other, in a way. And I think it doesn’t have to be some sort of big romantic love. Love is in so many different forms and shapes, and it ebbs and it flows, and it’s confusing, especially when you’re locked in a nightmare town. Things can get really confusing. I think, for Kristi, she was really starting to, kind of, come to terms with some things, maybe, and just dance with the idea of letting go, but didn’t fully commit to that. She was just being very honest and vulnerable at the end of Season 1 in a way that we didn’t get to see…
…because she often keeps her cards really close so that she can do her job. So, yeah, it’s been … it was a really cool ride as an actor to get to explore all of that as it comes.
Yeah. I definitely agree with you that, you know, using the shape triangle is perhaps the most simplistic way of describing it. And it certainly is not a traditional love triangle as you’re describing it. It’s barely even really a love triangle at all and what’s really fascinating about it is that … I think in a lot of stories that are like this, you would assume that suddenly now that Marielle is here, there’s this romance and intrigue that becomes infused into the story, but because of this setting, and as you said, the trauma, and the relentless trauma of the setting, it’s really not about that as much. It’s really about these three people trying to just navigate who they are and who they are in relationship to each other…
…within just the setting of the space.
And especially with Marielle, when we first see you and her together, it’s this really beautiful, emotional embrace. And then immediately afterward, in Episode 2, it’s like, no, wait, we have to address the problem. We have to address the trauma here. What was it like getting to work with both of your on-scene partners for those scenes? And did it feel like brand new in Season 2 or was it, sort of, like, kind of stepping into an old glove, so to speak. An old shoe.
Yeah. Such a great question. One of the first days of shooting for me was that scene between Kenny and Kristi when they’re making tea. And I feel like even though we hadn’t gotten to the heart, or even met Marielle yet – we hadn’t shot any of that stuff yet – having all of that, knowing we still had to shoot all of that and having to decide how I was going to come out of that room to see him, there were some decisions to be made. But as soon as I saw him, it was just like, I didn’t have to do … there’s no thinking anything. I felt so present with Ricky [He] because I feel like we have established this relationship and I could just trust that it’ll take whatever road it takes. And that specific day felt like putting the shoes back on and having all of the crew there that was the same from last year. It felt really comfortable, which I think is exactly what that dynamic is. And then with Kaelen [Ohm], our first scene together, it was that fight in the storeroom. So, we hadn’t shot the meeting yet either. So, it just all felt really tense for me because I didn’t know what that embrace was going to be like.
I kind of had to decide how it was going to fit but also be super present with her. And Kaelen’s wonderful and such a committed actor, and she really came in strong. And I think my job was to just take it and see how it landed in me. That felt really, really, really new, for both Kristi, for me, and for this relationship. So, it was all, kind of, naturally taking care of itself, in a way, if that makes sense.
At the time that this interview is going up, fans will have just seen Episode 3, which is entitled “Tether.”
Yeah. That episode is just so striking, especially with your character and the subplot in the episode with the character of Kelly.
And that really felt like we saw the kismet of you having had a nursing experience, now getting to see that, maybe the most up close and personal that we’ve ever gotten to see it with your character on this series. Can you talk a little bit about shooting those scenes and what it was like to really bring those experiences from your nursing experience to the forefront?
Ooh, you gave me goosebumps when you asked me that. Yeah, no, all super real. When I read that scene, I immediately knew it was going to be one of the hardest things I had to shoot, internally, to bring so much of your past traumatic time in a situation that you have experience with. Mind you, I’ve never had to take a pole out of someone’s head.
But the heart of that is, like, I have had to be a part of ending someone’s life. The reality of that is so true in my nursing experience. So, there was a lot coming up for me, and I was worried that I was going to, kind of, blow my cannon, you know? And it wouldn’t be right for the scene. She needs to maintain her composure, to a certain degree, and remain strong for Kenny and Ellis as well. So, I actually confided in Corteon [Moore] and Ricky that, “Hey, I think the scene’s going to be really hard for me. And I think it’s going to bring up a lot. I’m really excited about it, but I’m really terrified, too, so I just want you both to know I love you and I trust you and if you notice that I’m having a hard time, just let it do its thing.” You know? Because sometimes the worst thing you can do in situations like that is ask someone if they’re okay, you know, when they’re having a challenging time between a take and whatnot. But they are such beautiful people. They were like, “Yes, of course, we’re here for you in whatever way, shape or form.” And I think that was also good for me, too, to admit that. So, there was a lot, kind of, going on for me as well. The actor who plays Kelly, Phoebe Rex, just brought so much to that.
It was just a lot. And we were all just, like, shaken watching her scream for hours on end. And to these characters as well, I mean, they’ve kind of acclimatized to the trauma and the relentlessness of this place, but there’s something about the torture of it, the “finishing the job” that we haven’t seen yet.
So, to watch these characters have to do that and, kind of, stall, in a way. Kristi’s taking her time, in a way, because she doesn’t want to admit that she has to do this either. So, watching these very human characters try to figure out what the fuck to do here is super real. And yeah, again, there was just a lot of generous acting that day, and, yeah, a lot of stuff that got brought up for me personally. But again, I think that’s why we do this work, too. You want to bring as much reality to it as possible and honor it and not be overindulgent with it either. I think the way that scene was shaped and the aftermath of that was really beautiful. We see a bit of Kristi’s humanity…
…compassion, taking care of, and then crumbling to Marielle.
It also felt beautiful because I’ve heard previous interviews with you, and sometimes you’ve spoken about how you’ve sometimes struggled to…like, “Am I an actor? Am I a nurse? These are two things that I love and I’m trying to combine them.” And watching this scene felt like a beautiful fusion, where it felt like both of those pieces of you were finally coming together in a real … and I mean, obviously, in the first season, there is a lot of that experience being shown, but this, to me was … I’ve seen the first season, I’ve seen the first three episodes of Season 2, that was maybe the hardest scene for me to watch out of any scene.
And this show is fucking crazy and scary and wild.
But that scene was especially powerful in that sense—the meta sense and the story sense.
Yeah, and there’s just a lot of added layers for Kristi, too. The scene before that, her and Marielle are kind of starting to get somewhere in terms of who are we, where are we at. Kristi really wants to take that time to really sit down and be like, “Let’s talk about this,” you know? Like, that’s what she wants. And then immediately she’s getting pulled to duty and that’s kind of a theme for her throughout the entire season – this push and this pull between her heart and her duty and watching her struggle with that, right? And it really brings me back to my nursing days, especially during the pandemic. My girlfriend at the time, she had a challenging time understanding what I was going through. And just as I was wanting to explain or sit down or feel ready to, I was getting called back into work.
So, there was so much meta reality happening in that scene leading up to the Kelly stuff. I was like, oh, I don’t have to act or really think too much about this. Just be brave and trust that you’ve actually kind of lived this, in a way, so just let it take care of itself. And I think what you’re describing is that, in a way. I think in Season 1, too, Kristi’s got way more of a guard up. Marielle’s not there, she doesn’t have that at the back of her head, too, so I think that vulnerability that has cracked open in Kristi is that, kind of, yeah, that marriage that we see of who I am and who I am as a nurse.
I want to briefly switch gears to TIDAL, continuing in your nursing experience.
Because some people may not know, if they know you from FROM, that you directed this short film, TIDAL. It’s been playing at a variety of festivals and it’s really a very powerful and potent look at a lot of what you just described. You’ve said this was your first time directing a film. Will we see more of that? Are you interested in continuing to explore who you are as a director, either in the short form or in the feature form?
Oh, totally. Yeah, just to correct you, I co-directed that.
So, it wasn’t all me. I had a wonderful friend of mine [Niamh Wilson] help me out with that. I was like, “There’s no way I can do this by myself.” And she’s an actor, a brilliant actor, and a dancer as well, so we were able to speak that same language, and I trusted her behind the camera. So, yeah, that was both of our first go at it, and we loved it. I think I learned a lot about what makes a compelling performance by, kind of, being in the editing room and being behind the camera and being at the helm of this story that I want to bring into who I am as an actor. But yeah, directing, your brain’s on fire the whole time. It’s a different way of thinking. You have to be like, kind of, moment to moment with your actors, but also have this macro-level storytelling that you’ve got to keep aware of as well.
So, it’s a different way of working, and it really excites me. And I actually … we did, we shot another short. I had about … we had two weeks off, I think, while we were shooting Season 2. And Scott McCord, who plays Victor, he really liked TIDAL, and he really liked the process because there just wasn’t one. It was just like … when we shot TIDAL, it was just a bunch of instinct flying around and trust and a camera, noo script, and we were just creating and failing and everything in between and it turned into TIDAL. And he wanted to, kind of, create something like that, so I was like, “Let’s do it!” So, he came to me with an idea. I was like, “We’re not going to write a script. We’re just going to—”
“…we’re just going to go because that’s what you want to do, Scott. That’s why you came to me.”
Mm-hmm. As little friction as possible in the creative process.
And it’s just … of course, there comes a time when you need a script. [Both laugh] but in this infancy of me trying to develop who I am as a, yeah, as a director, in a way, I think this is such an incredible exercise to just really see how things work and shape without the pressure of a big crew or anything like that. And we had a great time. There was so much discovery to be had when you just, kind of, let people do their thing, you know? Like, so much cool humanity came out of me just leaving him alone and following him around and letting him explore.
And yeah, then I’ve kind of been inspired from a recent trip I took to Belgium. My family’s Belgian and I was there a few months ago and got really, yeah, inspired to create a short based on my grandfather and great-grandfather’s duties while being the village carpenters in rural Belgium. And I started asking a lot of questions to my Opa, and just a wealth, rich, storytelling canvas just came out of that. And I was like, “Oh my gosh, this story writes itself.” Basically, when you’re the town carpenter in a village, you’re also responsible for building coffins when village people pass away.
That’s so cinematic, holy moly.
Exactly. I know. And I’m like, I didn’t even have to make this up. All I’ve got to do is sit with my Opa one afternoon and hit record and let him talk. And I could just see all the images starting to float through my mind and I was like, “Oh, wow. Okay. I think the story’s coming to me, I think I know how to write it, and that’s my next adventure.” Like, proper, structured short film with a script. But yeah, again, I didn’t have to fish for it. Like, these things just start to reveal themselves to you, and then you don’t feel so nervous about the idea of writing a script anymore because it’s flowing through you.
That sounds like it could be an interesting narrative/docu-fusion kind of thing.
Because I want to see all of those landscapes—
…in vivid, vivid clarity. That sounds like an amazing project, and I hope we get to see it very, very soon.
Yeah. Me too.
My last question here for you, Chloe. We are That Shelf, meaning that shelf where you put all of your favorite things, your knick-knacks, your collectibles, maybe awards or things that you love.
Do you have “that shelf,” and if so, where is it and what’s on it?
I don’t have a shelf. I mostly just have a sea of things around.
Mm, “that table…”
“That table,” “that floor,” “that corner that’s building up dust.”
Yeah. It’s more like we leave a map of where I’m at versus a shelf.
Hey, I love that. Are there any particular items that are, sort of, like North Stars for you on that sea?
Ooh. I mean, the cell phone, I guess, because that greasy piece of glass we can’t function without. What else? My water bottle. That’s an important one. What else? That’s a really good question.
Hydrate or die-drate.
Yeah, it’s super important to hydrate. I wish I had more interesting things to say. My glasses peppered around.
There’s got to be a little, like, keepsake or knick-knack that you keep with you. No? Nothing? You seem like the kind of person who would have one or two.
Oh, I’m so tragic.
I keep … actually, no. I keep all the love letters that I’ve ever either written and never sent or have been sent to me. Yeah.
I keep them all because I’m sadistic.
And when I’m in a place where I’m not feeling anything and I need to do an audition, I’ll go and read one or two. I’m mentally ill.
If I’m ever in a place where I want to hurt myself…
…I’ll just take those out.
Masochists, we are.
Oh, my goodness. Well, Chloe, thank you so much for being here. FROM Season 2, it’s on MGM+, it’s on Paramount+ in Canada. We’re so excited to see where your character continues to grow, both in this season, maybe the next season, and then Belgian carpenters making coffins.
Belgian carpenters doing coffins! You bet!
Let’s do it.
Lots of stuff in the mix.
Thank you so much, Chloe. Thanks for your time.
Thanks, Larry. That was great.