'Snowpiercer' Season 3: Jennifer Connelly on Melanie's Return and Betrayal

After being thought of as long dead at the end of Season 2, Snowpiercer Season 3 revealed what fans have been hoping for for some time: Melanie Cavill is alive.

Jennifer Connelly's character made a triumphant reappearance in Episode 9, where it was revealed she had survived half a year on her own with little to no supplies by using suspension drugs to put her to sleep for weeks on end.

Jennifer Connelly on Melanie's Return and Betrayal

Connelly spoke to Newsweek about Melanie's absence, return, and eventual betrayal of Layton (Daveed Diggs) for what she felt was the greater good by telling the people of Snowpiercer that his quest to find New Eden is based on a lie.

Not only does Melanie tell the passengers the truth, she also takes control of the train from Layton and his crew with Episode 9 ending on the dramatic moment she learns that Mr. Wilford (Sean Bean) has escaped his prison.

Melanie's betrayal no doubt came as a shock to viewers but it also marked a shift in her nature, as it proved she has finally learned from the errors of her past and how lying to get her own way like in Season 1 is not worth the risk.

"There's been a huge reckoning, I think she's gone through some things that have really changed her and changed the way she looks at things and [she's had] a fundamental shift in her being, I think," Connelly told Newsweek of how Melanie has changed over three seasons.

"I think, just the extent to which things were getting out of control in season one, I think that she was forced to confront the person that she had become, and how reprehensible so many of her actions were.

"She had to really come to terms with that, and I think it changed her. And I think that Layton was the one that that brought about that change, he was the catalyst for that change in her."

Reflecting on the way in which Melanie's reunion with her daughter Alex (Rowan Blanchard) in Season 2 has also changed her, Connelly added: "Of course, there was the confronting [of] Alex, and what that meant, and her guilt and her shame and the choices that she made.

"Then I think that this experience that she had, this sort of near death experience, also pushed her further along in that journey and strengthened her resolve in terms of what she thought justice look[s] like, and fairness and respect for the passengers.

"She just felt that it was too much to gamble with, to keep the power from the people by keeping them in the dark and telling them a lie, even though she had been guilty of doing the same thing herself. She just felt she couldn't bear to go back there, especially given that it was so risky."

Jennifer Connelly Really Filmed in A Pod that Small

Episode 9 of Season 3 opens with a montage explaining how Melanie survived more than six months out on her own in a track scaler barely big enough for more than one person.

Connelly revealed to Newsweek that she was really filming in a pod that small with a single camera operator, and they stayed in the tiny space for the "better part of a day" to shoot her scenes.

While this may seem like a nightmare for someone claustrophobic, the Labyrinth star found it "super exciting" to film in the track scaler: "It was that small, it was really small and they closed us in so it was just me and the camera operator who had a handheld camera.

"Fortunately, I really like him, he's very lovely, a guy named Adam. So yeah, we spent a lot of time in there, it was super interesting. I enjoyed it.

"I enjoyed coming up with [and] thinking about what she would do and how we could create a montage that really told the story of the passage of time, what she had to do to survive and also her emotional state.

"[It was about] giving a glimpse to her emotional journey over that time. I had a great time filming there. It's really interesting."

On Melanie's Absence and Appearing as Vision to Alex and Mr. Wilford

Prior to her appearance in Episode 9, Melanie was very much an absent figure who represented a beacon of hope for the passengers on Snowpiercer, especially to Alex and the villainous Mr. Wilford.

In episode 4, Melanie appeared to her daughter and antagonist as a hallucination, and for Alex she acted as a voice of reason, helping to guide her in her hour of need when facing the dark secrets of her past.

"I thought it was really moving, I liked that episode. I think it was really a beautiful episode for Rowan's character, Alex, I thought she did it beautifully," Connelly reflected. "I thought it was interesting that she also appeared to Wilford, I suppose they're sort of bound in this sort of strange family triangle, the three of them.

"So, I thought that was interesting, the different ways in which she appeared to Alex and to Wilford.

"[Melanie was] a sort of a more taunting figure to the latter but it's almost like Melanie seep's through [to Mr Wilford] by virtue of his connection to Alex. I thought that was really interesting."

While Melanie appearing to Alex in episode 4 was moving it was the moment that they finally reunite in real-life that was the most emotional because of the way in which mother and daughter ask for forgiveness from the other.

Of working with her co-star on the scene, Connelly gushed: "She's so great and it was such a joy doing that scene where Melanie wakes up and she was just very emotionally available.

"It was something that we just did a lot, we didn't really talk about it much we just kind of did a bunch of takes and she felt just very connected, and available, and open and I found her very moving. She was really great in that team."

Connelly admitted that, while Melanie meant a lot to Snowpiercer's passengers even when she was not around, she was more interested in what her character was experiencing in that period of absence, rather than the pseudo-martyr she became.

"I didn't, to be honest, spend much time thinking about her absence, but just what she was going to be doing when we do find her again," Connelly explained. "I thought that storyline was really moving and I really enjoyed working on it. I really enjoyed spending this much time with [Melanie for] three seasons.

"I think she's become a really interesting character, the writers have done a great job writing some interesting storylines for her. I really liked her as a character and enjoyed what she was able to get what they had her [do] in the season."

Snowpiercer Season 3 ends on TNT on Monday, March 28 at 9 p.m. ET.

Snowpiercer
Snowpiercer Season 3
Snowpiercer Season 3
Jennifer Connelly, Sean Bean, and Rowan Blanchard in "Snowpiercer". Connelly spoke to Newsweek about her character's return in Season 3.