From Wisteria Lane to Wales!
Eva Longoria took on her first British role this year, in the BBC’s Decline and Fall, which is available for Americans to watch on Acorn.TV now. Based on Evelyn Waugh’s novel of the same name, Longoria plays Margot Beste-Chetwynde, an American woman who charms an expelled Oxford student — without telling him about her sordid side income from a number of South American brothels.
Longoria tells PEOPLE she had been hoping to take on a project in the United Kingdom for years — she’s a huge fan of shows like Downton Abbey and Absolutely Fabulous. But finding a role that was the right fit proved a challenge.
“I thought, ‘When am I going to get that chance?’ because it’s not like I could have been in a Downton Abbey setting,” she says of working in the U.K. “It was almost like this role was written for me. It was a South American woman who lived in Britain in a period piece. I just jumped at the chance.”
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Of course, there were some adjustments that came with working on a British production. There were perks: Rather than shooting on a sound stage or studio lot, they were filming in gorgeous, historic Welsh castles — which Longoria called a “treat.” But of course, there were downsides, too.
“The food [was different],” Longoria said. “We shot in Wales, and so it was like, every day we had peas.” “I said ‘I don’t think I’ve had this many peas in my life.’ “
But the real highlight was playing a modern woman in a period piece.
“It was so much fun to play her,” she says of Margot. “In that era, in the 1930s, women didn’t have a voice. Yet, here is this eclectic woman who is wealthy and interesting. She did what she wanted, when she wanted, with whom she wanted. It was so cool to see that character in that time period.”
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It’s been a busy 2017 so far for Longoria, who will celebrate her first anniversary to husband José Bastón this month. The couple is planning to mark their blissful while in Cannes, where Longoria will be on a work trip.
“I just enjoy my husband more and more,” she says. “He’s just a fantastic human being. I just like being married to him.”
Decline and Fall is now streaming on Acorn.TV.