How Kiernan Shipka’s ‘Mad Men’ Role Prepared Her For ‘Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina’

side by side photos of Kiernan Shipka as an adult in a black striped top and her as a child in a black dress at a Mad Men event

By Elyse Johnson |

side by side photos of Kiernan Shipka as an adult in a black striped top and her as a child in a black dress at a Mad Men event

(Getty Images)

Kiernan Shipka plays the sweet and determined teenage witch, Sabrina Spellman. But Shipka’s portrayal is slightly different. This time, Sabrina is shown to have a darker side on Netflix’s The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Shipka has made the role her own and received her fair share of praise for it. It’s interesting to see the young star play a more complex character, as Shipka’s past major role was more adorable and sometimes heartbreaking. The actress is best known for her time as Sally Draper on Mad Men. However, Kiernan Shipka actually says the role wasn’t too different from the witch she plays now.

Sally Draper is actually similar to Sabrina Spellman

Kiernan starred on the AMC’s Mad Men as the daughter of protagonist Don Draper. The actress’ fictional counterpart went through a dramatic transition throughout the show since she was the eldest daughter. In the end, Sally had to become a more maternal figure to her young brothers in a time of struggle. During an interview with Rolling Stone, the Flowers in the Attic star was asked how she would compare Sally and Sabrina. The actress noted that the two characters actually have a lot in common.

“I think there’s actually a lot of similarities. They’re both a bit sassy, and don’t put up with things that don’t sit right with them, and they’re both very independent thinkers. Sabrina’s life is obviously a bit more wild, but I think at the core, both of them are good people. And whole people,” the actress replied.

She continued, “I really feel lucky that the parts that I’ve been able to play have been very fully-realized, fleshed-out female characters. Sally had so much depth to her. And I feel like Sabrina has so much depth to her. I’ve just been really lucky that I’ve fallen into these female-forward shows. Truly, it’s made me a better person. The fact that I’ve gotten to play these two very different but very badass characters has shaped me a lot.”

Kiernan Shipka excelled in both roles

The actress said something similar in a separate about her time playing the Draper girl. When speaking to, the star was asked how playing Sally Draper affected her “coming of age”. Kiernan Shipka explained that acting in that role played a major part in that time of her life.

“It’s one of those things where you can’t imagine what your life would possibly be without it. Physically, I would not be here; I don’t think I would be anywhere near here. I truly have no idea what kind of person I would be without it because it was so formative. It’s where I learned that I really, really loved acting, and watching everyone work was amazing,” she explained.

Now, Shipka is kicking butt with Salem the cat as the iconic witch. But it’ll be interesting to see where life will take her as her career continues to expand!