‘One of Us is Lying’ stars tell secrets of hot new teen show

It’s like “The Breakfast Club” — but with a murderous twist. 

New Peacock drama “One of Us is Lying,” based on a bestselling novel of the same name, follows five teens from various cliques in their high school who end up in detention together — but only four of them emerge alive. 

“It’s such an amazing story, [author Karen McManus] is so good at capturing these archetypes and doing it authentically,” co-star Cooper van Grootel, 19, told The Post. 

“I remember there was one day of shooting where were playing ‘The Breakfast Club’ in our trailers. All four of us were sitting eating our breakfast, and we watched the scene towards the end where they’re sliding around the hallway. There’s those sort of archetypes from ‘The Breakfast Club’ that we do see in the story. But through great storytelling, we’re able to delve deeper into those characters.”

From left: troublemaker Nate (Cooper van Grootel), jock Cooper (Chibuikem Uche), outcast Simon (Mark McKenna), popular Addy (Annalisa Cochrane) and brainy Bronwyn (Marianly Tejada).
Nicola Dove/Peacock

Premiering Thursday, Oct. 7, “One of Us is Lying” follows brainy Bronwyn (Marianly Tejada), drug-dealing troublemaker Nate (Cooper van Grootel), star athlete Cooper (Chibuikem Uche, “The Tomorrow War”), and popular golden girl Addy (Annalisa Cochrane, “Cobra Kai”). Outcast Simon (Mark McKenna) is also with them in detention, but dies from an allergic reaction after downing a drink infused with peanut oil. 

The subsequent mystery ensnares them all, threatening to expose their secrets as they race to find out what really happened. To complicate matters, everyone has a motive to want Simon dead, as the boy helmed a “Gossip Girl” esque app that anonymously spilled dirt about classmates. The group of seemingly different teens grows closer as their lives are upended by the ensuing drama– and the cast bonded offset, too, they said. 

 “The first day that we met, it was at a diner in North Hollywood,” said Uche, 21. “We were supposed to grab lunch, and we were together for 9 hours. And so from then on, it was like, ‘Okay, I think we can work together!’”

Addy (Annalisa Cochrane), left, Cooper (Chibuikem Uche), Bronwyn (Marianly Tejada) and Nate (Cooper van Grootel) stand around in a library in "One of Us is Lying."
Addy (Annalisa Cochrane), left, Cooper (Chibuikem Uche), Bronwyn (Marianly Tejada) and Nate (Cooper van Grootel) in “One of Us is Lying.”
James Dittiger/Peacock

Each actor could relate to their character’s archetype in the high school hierarchy to a varying degree. 

“I think I have a lot of similarities to Bronwyn,” said Tejada. “I was definitely a good student, not as good as her with straight As! I certainly had some B’s and maybe a C somewhere in there. She has a lot of weight on her shoulders. That’s something I couldn’t relate much to but it’s so appealing to me how at such a young age, she feels the weight of the world on her shoulders because she has this little sister who’s dealt with a chronic illness, and she has the pressure of her parents to do well. So, I empathize with the pressure that she has.”

Popular girl Addy (Annalisa Cochrane) smiles while sitting in a cafeteria in "One of Us Is Lying."
Popular girl Addy (Annalisa Cochrane) in “One of Us Is Lying.”
Nicola Dove/Peacock

For Cochrane, on the other hand, homecoming queen Addy was her polar opposite. 

“I was always kind of a tomboy. I grew up in India for a long time, so I was always a barefoot kid running around climbing trees,” the 25-year-old said. “That was my bread and butter. It wasn’t until college that I was like, ‘Oh, I have to put on makeup and learn how to do my hair!’ So yeah, in high school I stayed away from it. But the older that I’ve gotten, the more I’ve seen the boxes created by the stereotype. That’s been interesting to feel like, ‘oh wait, that’s not me,’ and stopping people before they go to those judgements.” 

“Because the book is so well known and there’s such a big fan base behind it, there is a bit of pressure to represent these characters well and play them well,” said Uche. “So I guess that speaks to wanting to present the fullest, most complete version of the character. You want to do it justice.” 


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here