Everyone has a secret! At least that’s the truth in Peacock’s new series One of Us Is Lying, based on the bestselling Young Adult novel by Karen M. McManus.

Starring Annalisa Cochrane (playing Addy), Chibuikem Uche (playing Cooper), Marianly Tejada (playing Bronwyn), Cooper van Grootel (playing Nate), Barrett Carnahan (playing Jake), Melissa Collazo (playing Maeve), Jessica McLeod (playing Janae) and Mark McKenna (playing Simon), the show tells the story of five students stuck in detention before one of them appears to have died in an accident that occurs after taking a sip of water. Since the four remaining student had previous issues with their late classmate, they become the main suspects in his death.

“I believe people will be surprised by a lot of things [when watching the show] but, ultimately, we see the characters go through such a journey of finding themselves and who they are and that’s pure,” Cooper tells J-14 exclusively ahead of the show’s premiere. “Standing up for what’s right and knowing your true self.”

Annalisa teases that “not everything is as it seems.” She adds, even though some fans may have read the book, they should “strap in, because there’s lots more to uncover.”

“I hope [fans] enjoy everything, to be honest,” Marianly adds. “I can say that my favorite thing is the chemistry between the actors. Whenever I get a chance to be behind the monitors and see their work, I’m always astounded.”

Because the show is based on book, some of the stars used it as their guide when taking the show from the page to the screen. Annalisa, for example, said it was her “Bible” when it came to her character, Addy.

“Karen McManus wrote Addy with such a strong voice that everything was that much easier to access emotionally, mentally and even physically,” the actress shares. “From the first audition, I used Addy’s first-person passages constantly. They have been underlined and highlighted and scribbled on until it’s hard to see the pages. Although her final portrayal on screen strays slightly from the book, it was enormously helpful in the prep period and on set with difficult emotional scenes.”

Cooper, who plays bad boy Nate, took “some aspects” from the book, but got a change to “put my own spin on the character.”

“I made sure to read the book a few times before we started filming the show, so that I would be very familiar with the storyline and who Cooper is,” Chibuikem teases. Marianly adds, “I tried my best to keep the essence of Bronwyn that is so palpable in the book. The thoughts of a character are so helpful to me when diving into their world, so having that in the novel is a gift.”

Scroll through our gallery for an exclusive look at the One of Us Is Lying characters. 

One of Us is Lying will premiere its first three episodes on Peacock on Thursday, October 7. Episodes 4 through 6 will start streaming on Thursday, October 14, and the final two episodes will be available to watch on Thursday, October 21.

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