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SCAD alumna reflects on role in Amazon Prime series “The Underground Railroad”

Published: May. 18, 2021 at 1:22 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - A new series streaming on Amazon Prime has a lot of ties to the Coastal Empire.

The Underground Railroad” premiered Friday, and more than 50 Savannah College of Art and Design alumni, students and faculty will see their name on the credits.

That includes Charmaine Shaw, a 2019 SCAD grad, who now lives in Los Angeles.

She played a recurring, speaking role in the show while finishing up her master’s degree.

Shaw said the experience helped prepare her for an acting career.

“Prior to being on set, when I was at SCAD we were taking an on camera class, and I struggled through that class. Luckily, my professors were very comforting and they helped us a lot because they work in the industry,” Shaw said. “When I ended up on set with Underground, it was, you know, exactly how they said it was going to be, so I was well prepared and all my nerves, you know, kind of disappeared on the first day. And so now when I go to, like, auditions or anything like that I am much more relaxed, much more comfortable.”

She said it took a little coaxing from friends and family to watch the show.

“I know what the experience was on set and so to watch it I’m just like, ‘Oh, I’m so sad. I don’t want to watch it.’ you know? The set was amazing. Being on set was great, but it’s just, you know, you critique yourself, so it was hard for me to watch,” Shaw said. “But when I actually watched it, I was like, ‘Oh my God, this looks so good!’ So I was very proud of myself, very proud of the production in whole, you know? It was amazing.”

You can see Shaw’s character, Betty, in episode two, which was shot in the the Hostess City.

You may remember the series’ pilot was filmed in Richmond Hill, you can learn more about that by clicking here.

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