‘9-1-1: Lone Star’: Gina Torres Discusses Filming the Ice Storm Episodes

by Taylor Cunningham

During a recent interview, actress Gina Torres admitted that filming this season’s epic 9-1-1: Lone Star ice storm was brutal. But not for the reason you’d think.

Apparently, when creator Tim Minear decided to write several episodes that contain feet upon feet of snow, he didn’t want to shoot off-location where real snow falls. So he found a way to make the story work at his studio in Los Angeles—in the dead of summer.

“The ice storm episodes were hard. Those were pretty challenging ’cause we shot them in the middle of a heatwave. So we’re all wearing parkas and beanies and snow pants in 95-degree weather,” said Torres.

But despite being hot, sweaty, and generally miserable for a few weeks, Gina Torres had to give credit where it was due. The 9-1-1: Lone Star set designers created an absolutely flawless “winter wonderland,” and it was some of their most stunning work yet.

“It was just even more amazing to sort of ride up to set and see a blanket of snow and see this winter wonderland that had been created. But I was truly amazed when I saw the end product,” she admitted. “It’s why I love what I do. I’m always impressed and surprised. But especially when everybody gets to come and play. FX is on it. The crew is on it. Props is on it. It’s just a joy to see everyone’s creativity and artwork come together.”

Sierra McClain Asked for Mother for Advice Ahead of Filming her ‘9-1-1: Lone Star’ Birth Scene

Grace and Judd are finally the proud parents of a bouncing baby girl. But the birth episode was beyond dramatic. And when Sierra McClain was looking for advice on portraying difficult labor, she went to her own mother.

On the show, McClain’s Grace started having contractions while stranded in a car in the middle of an ice storm. And as it played out, the mother-to-be couldn’t get to a hospital before the baby came. So she had to give birth right where she was.

McClain is not a mother herself, so she had no idea how to draw inspiration for the tense scene. And considering the event happened without medical intervention, she didn’t know many women who could empathize with Grace’s situation.

But then she remembered a story that her mother constantly shares. And Sierra McClain realized she was just the person to talk to before the shoot.

“My mom is the best reference because she gave birth to my youngest sister with no pain medicine,” she said. “So, she reminds her of that every time she does something that she’s not supposed to do … but probably much like actual birth, nothing can really prep you for it. You just have to go in and do it, which is exactly how I felt when I was in it.”