None of the stars of “Pan Am” were alive in 1963, the year in which the show takes place. So in addition to learning their lines and figuring out their characters, they’ve also gotten a crash course in the social history of early-’60s America.
“It was just a different era … there were no consequences,” Michael Mosley, who plays co-pilot Ted, told Zap2it when we visited the set recently. “Nobody was going to get cancer from smoking. America was the best country in the world … even when we were wrong, we were right.”
“Pan Am” centers on its four female characters, who by virtue of their jobs were afforded more opportunities than a lot of women of the era — even if, as Christina Ricci puts it, it was still a “blatantly misogynistic period.”
“What we show is these women, in order to do this job … that allowed them these freedoms that would never be allowed otherwise, they sort of had to smile and wink and play the game a little bit, through these sort of misogynistic nuisances,” Ricci says.
And also? The storyline about Kate (Kelli Garner) being recruited by the U.S. government isn’t just something the writers made up.
“I had no idea any of that was going on [at the time],” says Margot Robbie, who plays Kate’s sister Laura. “We’ve spoken to the stewardesses, and a lot of them were working undercover, which is fascinating.”
Hit play on the video up above to hear more from Robbie, Ricci, Mosley, Karine Vanasse and Mike Vogel. “Pan Am” airs its final episode of 2011 at 10 p.m. ET Sunday (Dec. 4) on ABC and will return to finish up its season in January.