‘The Terror: Infamy’ revisits a true American horror story

Times writers talk with Derek Mio and Alex Woo, the star and showrunner of the AMC series, set during the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II.


Set during World War II and the United States’ internment of Japanese Americans, AMC’s “The Terror” weds that real-life horror story with a tale of the supernatural.

But showrunner Alex Woo says the second season of the anthology series, titled “Infamy,” is not just a period piece. Instead, it uses the horror genre to bring a story from the past into the present to represent the fear and terror of American citizens betrayed by their own government.


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“Infamy” was intentionally cast with actors of Japanese descent, so the show is very personal for many of the people working on it, including star Derek Mio, who plays Chester Nakayama, a Nisei or American-born Japanese. Mio’s grandfather’s family lived in the same Japanese American community portrayed in the show, the one that once existed on Terminal Island in San Pedro. Its residents were forced into internment camps after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The show also features George Takei, who was interned along with his family when he was 5 years old. Writers, directors and crew members also bring their personal and family experiences with the incarceration.

Mark Olsen (@IndieFocus) talks with Mio (@derekzmio), Woo (@thealexwoo) and Times film reporter Jen Yamato (@jenyamato).

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