(LOS ANGELES) -- One of the buzziest new shows on Hulu, The Handmaid’s Tale, premieres on the streaming site today. The series, based on the 1985 feminist novel by Margaret Atwood, follows Offred, a woman forced to live in an oppressive society.
Mad Men’s Elisabeth Moss stars in the lead role and says she hopes young women learn something from her character’s struggles.
“It’s very much about the hero that kind of lies in all of us and how has nothing to do with special skills or how big you are,” she told ABC Radio at the show’s Tribeca Film Festival premiere Friday. “You can find strength inside yourself that I think you didn’t know you had. And I think that that’s something I learned from it and something that Offred’s learns and I hope young women take away from it.”
The series is full of strong female characters, including Offred’s best friend Moira -- played by Orange Is the New Black actress Samira Wiley. Moira’s toughness serves as inspiration for Offred.
“She is someone that is gonna get knocked down and will rise up every single time,” Wiley says. “The memory of her friendship really bolstered Offred’s character to be able to say, ‘I will survive.’”
In addition to staying close to the novel’s dystopian plot, the series expands upon certain elements from the book. Namely, the character of Nick, played by Max Minghella.
“What’s great about doing a series is you get to expand so much and find out so many things about Nick that we don’t get to learn in the book and he’s a very enigmatic person so I find that really fun to play,” Minghella says. “There’s a lot of different sides to him.”
The first three episodes of the series hit Hulu today, with new ones debuting weekly thereafter.
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