It may sound crazy, but Emily Hampshire is basically Brad Pitt. Don't believe us? Just wait until you see her portrayal of a mental patient in Syfy's new time-traveling series, 12 Monkeys. The Canadian actress takes on the female version of a character originally portrayed by Pitt in the 1995 film of the same title. "The writers didn’t know how anybody was going to live up to Brad's part, so they changed the role to a woman,” Hampshire told InStyle during a recent visit to our New York offices. “His character’s name is Jeffrey Goines, and I’m Jennifer Goines.”
Despite the gender switch-up in the modern day take on the cult-classic, Hampshire said she was under “a lot of pressure” when reprising the role of Goines, who is enlisted to help a time traveler (played by James Cole) from the future as he tries to save the population from a deadly virus. “It’s the same character, but I’m not doing an impression of his performance—it’s totally new,” she said.
Fans of the original 12 Monkeys will appreciate subtle nods to the original film. “They made a replica of the sweater that Brad wore in the movie," Hampshire said. "It's this grungy velour sweater from the nineties. Fans went crazy when they saw pictures of me wearing it at Comic-Con!" That one pullover is as far as it goes when it comes to similarities between Jeffrey and Jennifer Goines's wardrobes.
Spoiler alert: Hampshire revealed that her character “comes into a lot of money" following a plot twist, and "starts wearing Christian Louboutins and Yves Saint Laurent dresses.” The actress just wishes that she knew how stylish her costumes would be when she first took on the role. “I thought my character would be wearing pajama pants in the hospital the whole time," she said. "Now I wish I had asked to keep my wardrobe!”
Tune in to the show tonight, Jan. 16, at 9 p.m. ET on Syfy.