‘The Girl From Plainville’: Conrad Roy’s Parents Hope Show Doesn’t ‘Defend’ Michelle Carter’s ‘Needless and Evil Actions’

Hulu’s miniseries The Girl From Plainville explores the 2015 true story of Michelle Carter, who was convicted of encouraging her boyfriend Conrad Roy’s death through text messages and phone calls. Shortly before the show premiered, Roy’s parents admitted they hoped The Girl From Plainville doesn’t “defend” Carter.

Elle Fanning as Michelle Carter and Colton Ryan as Conrad Roy in ‘The Girl From Plainville’ facing each other in a school.
Elle Fanning as Michelle Carter and Colton Ryan as Conrad Roy III in ‘The Girl From Plainville’ | Steve Dietl/Hulu

Conrad Roy’s parents hope ‘The Girl From Plainville’ doesn’t ‘defend’ Michelle Carter

Lynn Roy, Conrad’s mother, spoke to People a few days before The Girl From Plainville debuted on Hulu. She said she hadn’t yet watched the show. However, she pointed out her fears that the docuseries will center more around her son’s ex-girlfriend, Michelle Carter, than Conrad.

“There may be an attempt to defend some of her needless and evil actions,” she admitted. If anything, the Massachusetts native hopes the documentary will shine a light on her and the Roy family’s efforts to criminalize suicide coercion in their state. This crime would result in up to five years in prison.

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Referred to as Conrad’s Law, Massachusetts is one of the few states without the bill. Even though they seek to criminalize the action, Conrad’s parents ultimately hope the law helps other families not have to endure what they did.

A judge declared Carter legally responsible for Roy’s death. She was given a 15-month prison sentence but only served 11 months for good behavior. Conrad’s father admitted the prison time “doesn’t matter” to him, saying, “nothing’s going to bring my son back.” On the other hand, Lynn revealed that the conviction “satisfied” her because she felt they “had to be the voice” for their son. 

‘The Girl From Plainville’ is based on Conrad Roy and Michelle Carter’s relationship

The new Hulu docuseries is based on the 2014 true story of 17-year-old Carter (Elle Fanning). Carter used a series of text messages and phone calls to encourage her 18-year-old boyfriend Conrad Roy III (Colton Ryan) to die by suicide. The Girl From Plainville draws inspiration from journalist Jesse Barron’s article of the same name.

Throughout the episodes, the teenagers’ secret relationship is explored via hundreds of written exchanges and the investigation leading to her unprecedented 2015 conviction for involuntary manslaughter.

In 2019, the series began development and was filmed from August to December 2021 in Savannah, Georgia. A part of the miniseries premiered at the SXSW festival in March 2022 before debuting on Hulu two weeks later.

‘The Girl From Plainville’ cast includes Elle Fanning and Colton Ryan

Besides Elle Fanning and Colton Ryan, The Girl From Plainville‘s cast includes Cara Buono (Mad Men) and Kai Lennox (Unbelievable) as Carter’s parents, Gail and David Carter. Additionally, Callie McClincy plays Carter’s younger sister, Hayden. 

Chloë Sevigny plays Roy’s mother, Lynn, while Norbert Leo Butz portrays his dad Conrad II or “Co.” Peter Gerety plays his grandfather Conrad Sr. and Kristin Griffith as his grandmother, Janice.

The Roy family also includes two younger sisters, Sydney and Paige, portrayed by Ella Kennedy Davis and Leah Thompkins. The characters are inspired by Roy’s real-life siblings, Camdyn and Morgan.

The rest of the cast includes Pearl Amanda Dickson and Ella Rubin as Michelle’s friends Susie Pierce and Natalie Gibson. Billions actor Kelly AuCoin plays Scott Gordon, the detective investigating Roy’s death. The Girl From Plainville airs Tuesdays on Hulu.

How to get help: In the U.S., call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Or text HOME to 741-741 to speak with a trained crisis counselor at the free Crisis Text Line.

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