Over the years, Juno Temple has had roles in films such as “Atonement,” “Black Mass,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” and the “Maleficent” franchise. Still, despite her impressive resume, the one role she’ll be remembered for the foreseeable future is from the Apple TV+ breakout hit “Ted Lasso.” As Keeley Jones, Temple plays a smarter-than-the-room fashion model who goes from dating the team’s immature star Jamie Tartt (played by Phil Dunster) to a business protégée of team owner Rebecca Welton (Hannah Waddingham). And, surprisingly, the opportunity came her way via a text from Ted Lasso himself, Jason Sudeikis.
“He explained this arc for the first season for Keeley and sort of an arc of the show of also how human it was, then I was like, ‘Oh, O.K., cool. So I don’t have to be a genius comedic [actor] like you,'” Temple recalls. “And he was very patient with me about moments where I was like, ‘I don’t know how to do this.’ That’s actually how it came my way, which was very cool but also quite nerve-wracking. I think it’s rare for me that I get offered jobs that I already love, and I’m excited about. I spend a lot of time auditioning still, so it was a really lovely surprise when this happened.”
As the American-born Lasso tries to win over his new British team (and maybe learn the game at the same time), Keeley finds herself increasingly disgusted by Jamie’s behavior. And as she forms a bond with the team’s oldest veteran Roy Kent (Brett Goldstein), she starts to see a new life for herself away from the red carpets, paparazzi, and tabloids.
“She’s learning that what’s happening in her life at the beginning of season one isn’t feeling right. She’s kind of an accessory to this young, hot football player who is really good at playing football and figuring out who he’s going to be. He’s becoming a man, for lack of a better expression, but he’s not necessarily giving her what she needs,” Temple explains. “Roy presents something new. And there’s that great moment in episode four in the gala where he makes her realize how important accountability is and says that his feelings were hurt by an action that she did. She realizes that he’s got a lot going on inside that he doesn’t let a lot of people see, and I think that’s a very important moment for her.”
Temple adds, “And the big thing that Jason talked to me about was also the beautiful friendship between Rebecca and Keeley, and how Rebecca actually helps Keeley see the brain that she’s got in a way that I don’t think anybody has before.”
The word of mouth series is supposed to go for just three seasons and just wrapped filming season two (and, yes, Sudeikis has recently left the door open for it to continue beyond that). The entire cast is being very secretive over any details moving forward, including Temple, who has no idea where Keeley may end up in season three. However, there is one aspect of the show she can tease, and it’s actually one of the show’s secret weapons: its costumes, hair, and makeup.
“All I would say is that I’m really excited for Keeley’s looks ,” Temple says. “Nicky Austin has done Keeley’s hair and makeup for the whole shoot and is the head hair and makeup designer on the show. Don’t forget to look at Keeley’s hair accessories. [Costume Designer] Jacky Levy has just outdone herself with the wardrobe. I think, again, with this journey of Keeley that she’s going on, I think her looks and her wardrobe help accentuate that, and help show what she’s becoming, but in a very Keeley way.”
Despite critical acclaim and industry accolades, Temple reveals that having her family embrace the series has been the extra special bonus.
“I have two younger brothers who are two of the most important and brilliant humans I know, and they really love it,” Temple says. “And being a part of something that they don’t have to watch their sister go through something very heartbreaking on camera or where I’m naked or something, I think it’s been really good. Even though I know there’s that moment in the beginning in the pilot where you see a nice titty shot of me, but that’s not my real tits, I’ve got to say. And also, because both of them are really big football fans, it’s really cool to be a part of a show that affects people on so many different levels. And it was so cool because they were nervous when I was doing it. They were like, ‘How is this going to crossbreed with America and England? How is that going to work?’ And then they saw it, and they were like, ‘Well done.'”
“Ted Lasso” is available worldwide on Apple TV+. Season Two begins July 23.