Mad Men Actress to Play Key Role in Lifetime's Flowers in the Attic Movie

Kiernan Shipka Flowers in the Attic CastAnd you thought Sally Draper was a messed-up little girl…

Mad Men‘s Kiernan Shipka has been cast as the young female lead in Lifetime’s upcoming adaptation of V.C. Andrews’ novel Flowers in the Attic, our sister site Deadline reports.

The eerie made-for-TV movie will tell the story of Corrine (played by Heather Graham, Scrubs), a recent widow who puts her four children into a pretty terrible situation at her parents’ mansion after their father’s death. A disturbing family secret causes the children’s grandmother, Olivia (Ellen Burstyn, Political Animals) to lock the children in the attic, where the oldest boy and girl (Shipka) develop a really-not-OK bond.

RELATED | Lifetime Renews Devious Maids for a Second Season

Mason Dye (The Secret Diary of an American Cheerleader Web series) has been cast as Shipka’s character’s brother.

Shipka has played Don and Betty Draper’s daughter Sally since the AMC series’ first season, and she has appeared on Monk and Heroes. She also played herself in a 2012 episode of Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23.

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  1. Curly says:

    Isn’t she a little young to play that part? I read the books so many years ago, but I do think because of the awkward & confusing nature of her relationship with her brother , the part should go to a slightly older girl. maybe I still see her as little Sally Draper and am not ready to see her have sex.

    • BabyFirefly says:

      I agree, she seems way too young for this role. I don’t watch Mad Men and watching her play Cathy would be very uncomfortable if they stick to the book.

      • Thom says:

        She’s 14 (if IMDb is to be believed) so she’s actually not that far off from the 16-ish character I think the book described. Anyway, I doubt you’ll actually see them having sex- we’ll probably just see the build up and then have a fade to black with sex being implied afterwards.

        She’s a very good actress, IMO, so she’ll be able to pull this off.

        • EveatEden says:

          I think at the start of the book Cathy is around 14 not 16 so she sounds like a good fit.
          Kristy Swanson was TOO OLD when she played the part in 1987 (she was 18 at the time).

          • EveatEden says:

            Actually looked it up and she is 12 at the start of the books so making her 14 or 15 when they finally escape. I knew she was young because she’s still under age in the 2nd book.

        • I heard she was 12 at a site giving her age. 14 makes it more decent. I’ll double check and be back. He was supposedly born in 96.

      • according to Wikipedia she’s 13 she’ll be 14 november
        should’ve probably gone 18+ because legally they’ll have to dumb down alot
        but don’t think i’ve ever read the books or seen the movies so i don’t detailed they actually get

        but reading the brief summaries at Wikipedia they are some depressing books
        i’m surprised the author didn’t throw a few scenes of puppies & kittens getting slaughtered just for the heck of it

      • Hurley says:

        You people are used to 30 year oled actors playing teenagers

        • Curly says:

          That isn’t my problem with this actress playing the part. The character has a sexual relationship with her brother in the book…so I am wondering how they will pull it off with a 13year old actress? I cant imagine an actress her age is allowed to film those kinds of scenes. But- I must say Ellen Burstyn as thee evil Grandma & Heather Graham as the mom seem like perfect casting.

          • Pumpkinbabies says:

            Wait though, I clearly thought the original flowers in the attic movie (starring Kirsty Swanson) didn’t show too many sex scenes?

            Besides if her parents allowed her to take part in the movie, she can.

            Oh and btw, why is it that young children can play murderers (think orphan, the omen, children in the corn) but the minute they play someone who is in a “sexual” relationship with a person, they don’t want that?

            Some children shouldn’t be doing movies with violence and cursing and horror but there is no controversy.

          • Pumpkinbabies says:

            It’s also spooky how much this actress looks like a young kristy Swanson. Lol

          • lalaland2013 says:

            The original film completely omitted the incestuous relationship, which I thought was a mistake.

            And you are absolutely right, Pumpkin: I’m going to imagine it’s for the same reason that we have shows like 24, Hannibal, etc on primetime with no concerns, but Janet Jackson’s nipple for half a second is a SCANDAL!

            This country was founded by puritans who shamed any kind of sex other than for the purpose of procreation… yet had no problem with violence, as evidenced by their actions toward the natives and Quakers. It seems the traditions and cultures have been passed on. Guns, war and any kind of violence are A-ok, but let’s teach our kids to be ashamed of their bodies and scare them into ever feeling comfortable with their sexuality and ban any type of icky sex ed in schools. I’m not saying everyone is like this, but it seems to be a pervasive trend in American culture.

          • BabyFirefly says:

            My problem is a 13 year old playing a character who gets raped onscreen. I understand in the books she is 12 in the beginning, but the book spans 3-4 years. This actress will still be 13-14 when she films the movie. She will be 13-14 playing a 16 year old who gets raped. I personally have a problem with it.

          • BabyFirefly says:

            @pumkinbabies – have you read the book? It’s not a “Sexual” relationship, at least in the first book, it’s rape.

          • Pumpkinbabies says:

            @BabyFirefly and would you have a problem if she played a bully? A serial killer?

    • Lo says:

      Based on these comments, it’s clear either no one read or no one remembers the book. Cathy lived in the attic from age 12 – 15. So Kiernan is the perfect age to play this role. There is no way they’d find an 18+ year old to pull off a 12-15 year old look. As for such a young actress dealing with the questionable source material, remember what show she’s coming from, it’s hardly the Brady Bunch

      • BabyFirefly says:

        I read all of the books, my point is she is young for the material, not too young to fit the character. I understand she’s an actress and coming from Mad Men, but they aged Daenerys from Game of Thrones, because people would have been outraged if they actually cast a 13 year old to play that part. People were outraged when Dakota Fanning was raped in Hounddog. I could be protesting too soon though, they may tone down “that Scene”. I guess my problem is that scene, the way it’s written, acted out by a 14 year old.

        • Laura Aliaga says:

          What is more offensive to me is that people would somehow be more okay with an 18 year old acting out a rape scene. An 11 year old girl was raped in India this past week, if someone chose to do a movie depicting her tragedy, would we ask an 18 year old girl to do it? Pumpkin nails it right on the head: Why do we have issues with children in sexual situations (assault or consensual) but not in violent ones (Children of the Corn, Orphan, etc)? I don’t appreciate selective outrage, particularly when rape occurs all too often to young girls and women and people are more offended of the portrayal of it than the actual reality. P.S. I’m not referring to any particular poster(s) on TvLine, this is just a general societal observation, for whatever it’s worth

          • It’s very possible. Will Smith played a 14 year-old part, but was actually 4 or 5 years out of high school when the show even began. Omar Goodin(Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper; Smart Guy) pulled it off, too. The late Michelle Thomas(Family Matters and the Cosby Show–Justine). Plus, plenty of 18 or 19 year olds look young enough to look 14-16 years old–esp. the short ones. Young looking + 18-19 year old + short = what you are looking for. Almost anyone young without crow’s feet and rough/hardened stiff features

        • Pumpkinbabies says:

          Why are you offended that a 14 year old is acting out a rape scene (btw, go watch bastard out of Carolina, that has one of the worst rape scenes ever and the actress could have no less than 10 or 11) when REAL 14 year olds get raped.

  2. michelle says:

    The book series is such a coming of age for people. I remember when I first read it. Crazy stuff happens. This Lifetime movie can’t be as bad as the original movie so I’m excited. Solid actors. Kiernan is a star. Can’t wait to watch.

  3. Lore says:

    She is Catherine? damn, this is so amazing, that series are so twisted that i love them, i think, Flowers in the attic was one of the books i have ever read

  4. Lola says:

    Awesome. News.

  5. SonOfCoul says:

    I have never gotten into Mad Men, but I can say that her guest spot on Don’t Trust the bitch in Apt 23 was pure comedy gold. The banter between her and James Van Der Beek was hilarious. Kid’s got a future,,,that’s for sure.

  6. Speeders says:

    I’m so torn on this series. It seems like it will be really twisted and dark (which I love!), the addition of Shipka and Burstyn screams instant classic but Lifetime’s and Heather Graham’s involvement sets off warning bells for me. Either way, I’ll definitely be watching this.

  7. Soapstef says:

    I will watch this no doubt, but it’s Lifetime so it will have to be watered down. Having said that though it could still be better than the original Kristie Swanson version which was just terrible! It’s hard for Hollywood to do VC Andrews I think. I actually would prefer they tried the HEAVEN series or Lois Duncan’s Daughters of Eve. DOE could be absolutely amazing with all the amazing young actresses today! Come on Hollywood…dig a little deeper!

  8. EveatEden says:

    I hope they do a better job than the last Flowers in the Attic movie!

  9. Buff says:

    She didn’t belong on Mad Men. She didnt fit the part both physically (as compared to the parents) and there are many other far better and gifted child actors than her. I won’t watch this movie. Makes you wonder who she’s related to in the business. They need to start hiring talented actors, not relatives and friends of those in the biz and their talentless children. They should have hired a little girl that looked like the “drapers”at very least. This movie will be even worse than her acting in Mad Men.

  10. Tasha Smith says:

    please stop commenting on her age and let the actress act. She’ll play the role perfectly. I believe she’s an amazing actress.

  11. That girl was really only 12 or younger when she acted in that movie. The boy was really 17 or 18(born in 96). Usually, when you do a movie–that is more mature than is fitting for a young minor–they have an older person playing the part. They just put a young looking 18 year-old in for the role. Her parents were breaking the law enough to lose their child(and/or face jail time) and the company paying her was breaking the law, too. How is it legal for that to happen without an outcry? The state could make charges against that; I’m sure. It’s not 1940 when people where getting married at those ages; it’s 2014 where little girls/kids don’t mature nearly as fast.