True-Blood.net Interview Kristin Bauer (Part 1)
Join us Friday, December 19, on True Blood Radio for part 1 of our interview with the hilarious Kristin Bauer (Pam on True Blood). In our first segment, Kristin talks about how she broke into acting, landing the role on True Blood, and her experiences filming the show and working with Anna Paquin, Alexander Skarsgard and Stephen Moyer. We guarantee you’ll be cracking up as Kristin relates her first day on the set and trying to film the “flying” scene!
UPDATE: It took a while, but it’s finally here! The transcript for part one of our interview. We’d like to thank Becky for taking the time to do this for us. Thanks, Becky!
True-Blood.net: Well, let’s get started. First off, we want to congratulate you for True Blood’s nomination for the Golden Globes for Best New Show.
Kristin Bauer: I know, isn’t it great? Yeah.
TBN: No, Best Drama. Best Drama.
KB: Wow, that’s so awesome.
TBN: And the Writer’s Guild for Best New Show.
KB: Okay! I didn’t know that. That’s great.
TBN: Oh yeah, they’re coming in thick and fast now.
TBN: It’s exciting. It’s exciting for us as fans and uh, ‘course we always knew it.
KB: Yeah. Oh good. So you guys knew and had read all the books before the show?
KB: Okay, cool. You’re gonna have to tell me actually, because we’ll get to that, but I only read book one, so I actually want to hear what I get to do.
TBN: Ohhh. So we can give you some spoilers.
KB: I’m gonna turn this interview around.
TBN: Oh, yeah. It doesn’t normally work like that! Well, Kristin, can you tell us how you got started in acting and did someone in particular inspire you? Anybody in the business that you particularly admire?
KB: I did and I know I admired so many people, it’s almost hard to pick one from the beginning, but I started in acting in sort of an odd way because I didn’t move to LA for acting. I just moved to LA… I’d been living in Boston and New York and I was an artist. That’s probably my biggest passion is painting and drawing and you know you’re always broke, is what that really means. So I was always working to 2-3-4 menial labor jobs and I moved to LA because it was just sunny out and in Boston I had to trek through the rain to get to these crappy jobs and the winter is harsh. So I thought well this place seemed easier and I ended up literally walking down the street and this guy came up to me and asked me if I wanted to be in a movie. First it’s a video. I can’t even remember what it was, but it was some music video. And then a movie and it’s this horrible B-movie that nobody ever saw and I’ll take the name of it to my grave, but it was a blast and you know they paid me more in a week than- more in a day- than I was making in a week or two. And I thought well this is really easier. Maybe this is something I can do to support myself while I paint. And I knew that I wasn’t very good. I mean, at the end of the take, the director would just make fun of me. And the movie was so bad that it didn’t matter. So we- I just thought well this is hysterical, this is easy, this is kind of fun, because you’re around people and doing you’re always alone. So I then went to acting class and started working on actually figuring out how to do it. And then my friend Leah Remini from “King of Queens” took my headset and she got a pilot for CBS in ‘94 and she took my headset in and they last minute called me and hired me. And I didn’t have an agent or anything and her agent helped do the paperwork and that was kind of the beginning because I ended up with her agent. He’s a good agent. And I had that agent until two years ago and so I fell into it and then decided I loved it and then ended up having to work really hard and pay my dues.
TBN: So you kinda came in through the back door?
KB: I did. I really did. So people will, you know, new actors arriving off the bus, you know, everyday they will say, you know, “what do you- what’s your advice?” And I’ll say “run.” If you can do anything else and be happy, do it. This is not a good business that really makes your life easy.
TBN: Okay, crossing that off of my list…
KB: Yeah, I try to convince everyone to do anything else and if there’s nothing else you can do, like myself, besides wash windows and work as a receptionist and all these jobs where, I mean, I got minimum wage, then acting is probably something you could try.
TBN: As a last resort.
KB: Yeah, as a last resort. During the strike, I mean, an actor friend of mine said, when we were all scared it would last a long time- the writers’ strike- she said, “are we all going to just be working at Starbucks?” And “you know, honey, we’re not qualified.” But seriously, they wouldn’t hire us.
TBN: So how did the role of Pam come to you then?
KB: That was an audition and I knew nothing about…It was for Alan Ball, so I knew who he was. And was really excited about the possibility of working with him. But I didn’t- and playing a vampire excited me to no end. And…but I didn’t know anything about this series. Which- I love vampire series. So it’s a great thing for me in two ways because now I can read the books. But it was just an audition and I went and then I went- I think I left for the Philippines to shoot a movie and I got a text message when I was there: “You’re working on True Blood. We got to get you back.” And so I started…I flew 17 hours from the Philippines. I was on the opposite time schedule. Went to work the following morning at 11am for my fang setting and to get my corset and went right to the set and was beyond deliriously tired. For the whole first episode, I mean I don’t think I knew who was in it, I don’t think I knew who I was, and I was just laughing because I was delirious.
TBN: Wait, wait…a corset?
KB: Yeah. The first episode they had me in like this…it was like this leather Victorian/bondage Pam outfit.
TBN: I didn’t realize that that was an actual corset, though. I thought that was just…
KB: They had to lace me in and out. It took 2-3 people to go to the bathroom with me. So I basically did, you know, a few 18-hour days, right off the plane from the Philippines, not eating, drinking water, or sitting down.
TBN: Oh wow.
KB: Yeah, I was like “wow, this job is kinda hard.” I don’t know that I’ll like it.
TBN: See we’re all watching it going “oh wow, she has nailed Pam’s deadpan, completely emotionless expression.” Little did we know…
KB: Yeah, I was exhausted. Um…I…It really, you know, being so unaware of who Pam was, you know, it did say in the audition material that she was sorta sarcastic. But I thought it would just be a fun way to play her.
TBN: Oh perfect. It’s perfect. Yeah.
KB: Good! Good.
TBN: My favorite…I think my favorite introduction was when Bill tells Pam, “I’m mainstreaming,” and she just looks at him deadpan and says “Good for you.”
KB: Yeah, right? I tend to be, in my own life, deadpan and pretty sarcastic. So my friends are laughing because I tell them I don’t really have to act.
TBN: So you are Pam?
KB: I think I am Pam and the funniest thing is that out of all the roles I’ve ever done, for the first time in my life, I’m getting recognized at the hardware store, at a restaurant…And we’ve all commented over the years, because I also like “Star Trek,” that I have a cloaking device because I can see people the day after I’ve worked with them on set and they won’t recognize me. If my hair was down when I met them and it’s now in a ponytail, I’m a new person. And…
TBN: Well that’s true.
KB: It’s really fun for me, and interesting, how different I look in every role. But for some reason, Pam has got through my cloaking device because now…I mean at the hardware store yesterday, a guy said “I’m a big fan.” And I was like, “oh no! I didn’t shower!” So I’m going to have to start thinking about what I look like when I leave the house.
TBN: From here on out you will, yeah.
TBN: Because Pam is pretty popular with the fans.
KB: Oh good, good.
TBN: Well, you know, Liz’s screen name on True-Blood.net is Pam.
KB: Oh great!
TBN: And that’s just ‘cause she got to it first, or I would have taken it.
KB: That’s awesome!
TBN: There’s a huge fan club.
KB: Oh good! Because she gets to do fun stuff, huh?
TBN: She brings the snark. That’s what it is. We love that she’s so snarky. And then she’s so comfortable in her own skin. That’s the biggest thing that impresses me the most about Pam through the whole series is that she just loves who she is and she doesn’t give a darn whether you like her or not.
KB: Yeah, I love that too. Isn’t that the best thing? That’s what we wish we could all be in life, you know, that’s our fantasy. You know, I think that that’s awesome.
TBN: So obviously you don’t have to do too much to prepare for the role.
KB: No, I think of what is the most like cool, sarcastic, cold, inhumane way to say this line. Done. And shockingly, that comes really easily to me.
TBN: Help me out here a little bit. You were talking about how you’ve got this cloaking device which, you know, shout-out- I’m a huge Trek fan myself.
KB: Actually, I did one episode of that show. I was a Klingon.
TBN: In which series?
KB: It was in the latest one- what was it called? “Enterprise?”
TBN: Oh, “Enterprise.”
KB: With Scott Bakula? Now, it’s probably the one show that I didn’t keep up with. The rest I did keep up with. I watched every “Star Trek.” So when they called and said, you know, “do you want to do it?” I’m like, “Heck yeah!”
TBN: Sign me up!
KB: Yeah and I had the pox so I got a smooth forehead and I started to have human feelings and I felt fear and I was extremely disturbed by that. And I uh…but it was 5 hours in hair and makeup.
TBN: Yeah, no kidding.
KB: But I thought, “well, it’s a lot more fun watching the show.”
TBN: Yeah I didn’t stick with “Enterprise” very long. I liked the concept, but then my cable company quit carrying it. Yeah, I was like “great.” Where I was going with that, though, was one of my all-time favorite movies is “Romy & Michele.”
KB: Oh, yeah.
TBN: I can not figure out which of the A-group you played.
KB: Yeah. See? This is my cloaking device. People look at my reel of all my roles and they don’t believe it’s the same girl. If you change my hair and makeup, I’m unrecognizable. But the really fun thing, that I think has nothing to do with acting, but gets attributed to it, I was the A-group girl- they always color-coded us- so I was in peach and I had these ringlet curl to my hair.
TBN: Ahh yeah. See, I was staring at some stills and going, “I’m pretty sure I know which one she is.” I did, I had it figured out.
KB: You did. Okay!
TBN: Yes, I love that movie, though. I can still see it.
KB: Great. I love that movie.
TBN: You got to work with some pretty cool people in that movie, too.
KB: I did. It was really fun. And we did all those really big party scenes, so they took months to shoot. We were around each other for long days and we had a blast. And I’m still really good friends with Elaine Hendrix and Julia Campbell, two of the other A-group girls. And it was just- it was a blast. I just saw Elaine yesterday and it’s great when you can also make friends with the people you work with.
TBN: I was just stoked when I saw you had been cast on True Blood and had been in “Romy & Michele.” I was like, “Liz! She’s from Romy & Michele!” You know, ten years ago, but whatever.
KB: Whatever! It’s still good.
TBN: It’s an all-time movie. Well, do you come up with your own ideas….When you’re filming on True Blood, do you kind of talk to Alan and say “oh, I think I should do it this way” and how is he receptive to that? Is there any of that kind of thing going on?
KB: Yeah, not as far as the plot of the show. I think all of us have sort of reverence for him. Like a couple of us have said, you know when we first met and were first starting out, you know, we respect him so much but didn’t know what to expect. Is he very social? Is he very talkative? Should I be more quiet? He’s so sweet and we have so much fun on the set. He’s always around and he directed the first and the last, and I was in the last. We’ve come up with some funny bits for Pam and mostly Anna, Stephen, so Sookie and Bill, and Eric, Alexander Skarsgard, were always together in a scene. And a lot of the stuff we shoot were really long and would be 16-18 hour days and Anna drenched in blood, watching the floor get covered in blood. Watching Long Shadow have a hose attached and pump blood out of him.
KB: Right? It was an incredible sequence. And then the vampire trial was outside, we’re shooting at night, so we go into work at 4pm and leave at 6am so you’re delirious. And you get to the point where you’re laughing so hard you cry. I almost peed. The four people…you know, Anna, Stephen, Alex, and I are just the funniest people. And then Alan got involved, some of the producers got involved and we really were having fun. I leave all the worrying and the technicalities to the director and the producer. I could care less. So when I hear action, I know what I’m doing. So they have stress, but I don’t. So Alan, I don’t know anything about where the show is going and we’ve all sorta of gossip “well I heard this was going to happen and I heard this” but we don’t know. And I certainly don’t know. So we start back in January. And now I’m a fan of the show, I can feel that I’m a fan as well because I’m dying to read the first script because I want to know what happens!
TBN: Well we are too. Feel free to pass that along.
KB: I feel really bad that you guys…because I had this with “Deadwood.” So you guys have to wait until- I think it probably will air in the fall.
TBN: True Blood? No, they’re saying summer.
KB: Really?! Good.
TBN: Yeah, they’re saying June, hopefully.
KB: Great. Yeah, they can do it because we’re starting back the first week in January.
TBN: Yeah, that’s quick.
KB: Yeah it’s really great because I think we finished around July and it’s nice to be back to work soon. It feels like a short break, actually. When I said that I was like “wow, that’s a six-month break, but it didn’t feel like it.”
TBN: Yeah. Were you watching it on HBO as the episodes were coming out?
KB: Yeah. Because I had only seen episodes 1 and 2. They had a screening for us. So I knew the flavor of the show. That- when we went to those screenings, to see the credits and the music and you know, I’d been at the table read. And I’d been in the scenes. Just the vampire scenes. But it’s such a big cast, I wasn’t watching Lafayette and Sam Trammell- Sam Merlotte. You know I’m not watching these people act. And oh my God!
TBN: There’s a ton of stuff going on.
KB: Yeah and Ryan Kwanten, who plays Jason Stackhouse, we’d seen each other and we had some great fun at a couple of the parties, but he’s Australian, he’s sort of really incredibly quiet and he seems fantastically shy.
TBN: Really? His interviews he seems that way when anybody is talking to him, asking him questions. He’s got this not so sure look about him and there’s that boyish smile of his and you’re like “oh this poor kid!”
KB: I know! And then you see him- I see him on screen and I’m like “wow! He is amazing. Last weekend, Alexander…It was Ryan and my birthdays, I guess it was two weeks ago.
TBN: Belated Happy Birthday!
KB: Thank you! And a promoter threw Ryan and myself and I said “hey, Alexander, you want to go?” and he said sure, so the three of us went to Vegas for a weekend.
KB: And it was…Alexander and I…that guy makes me laugh. So we just laughed and laughed and laughed. And Ryan had a lot of his friends there, so he was really busy. But again, he’s so sweet. I still, looking at him, am terribly impressed that he’s playing this character that seems to definitely be either a repressed part of his personality or he’s just making it up!
TBN: Well if he’s making it all up, he’s doing a dog-gone good job and there’s a lot of rumbling out there why he didn’t get nominated for a Golden Globe.
KB: I know, I agree.
TBN: Because he certainly deserves it, but uh…
KB: He deserves it. Boy, the range of that character…he’s working hard. So is Anna and Anna didn’t either, huh?
TBN: No, she did!
KB: She did?! Oh my God, that’s great.
TBN: Yeah, we’re crossing our fingers and legs and eyes and everything for her.
KB: I can’t believe…that’s really interesting that Ryan didn’t because I think he deserves it.
TBN: Yeah, a lot of people do. But I keep saying there’s still another season.
TBN: And this is the Golden Globes where they combine um…it’s not like the Emmys where they have supporting in acting uh…supporting actors for the different genres, like they do the Emmys. You know, they kind of lump them all together. So yeah, it’s brutal competition at the supporting level. So…
KB: It’s really…And I wonder too, you know, Anna has such a long history of great work, that I’m sure that helps. You know, Jason…Ryan is a little new.
TBN: Yeah well I think he’s going to make a name- big name- for himself with this show. I don’t know what else he’s working on, but this has already put him out there, like amazingly popular.
KB: Yeah, he’s incredible.
TBN: It’s doing- the show is doing a lot for a lot of you guys.
KB: Yeah, I would say so. You know I’m sort of removed. I’m off in the studio painting, when I’m not working. So I’m kinda- that’s kind of way I’m like “oh really? Who was nominated?” I should probably look at that.
TBN: Well now, you can just bookmark our website and we’ll keep you up-to-date, okay?
KB: Okay! Good.
TBN: It’s all right there.
KB: That’s what I’ll do. That’s what I like, to have other people help me.
TBN: One-stop shopping.
TBN: So you’re going to be working even more with Eric (Alexander). How is that? You mentioned you guys have a lot of fun and he’s pretty funny. (KB: Yeah) Do you guys try to come up with stuff together that you could do with your characters?
KB: Well we do, and then we’re mainly probably too embarrassed to share it with Alan. We come up with the most ridiculous things. But Stephen Moyer did. I thought it’d be funny to just have somebody walk in to one of the back rooms of Fangtasia and Pam’s got her back to the camera and somebody says “Pam, you’ve got a phone call” and she turns around and there’s just blood running down her face and there’s some poor guy standing there about to faint because she’s been feeding on him and she goes “who is it?” And they say “it’s blah blah blah” and she goes “take a message” and goes back to right back to eating the guy. And so we come up with gags and I’m sure Alan entertains the sweet little children. “Oh that’s so cute!” We just want to hear your little ideas.
TBN: Pats you on the head and sends you over to get some cookies and milk.
KB: Yeah. And then we were asking “well so were Eric and Pam a couple?” And we were joking, yeah but after the first 200 years the passion has kinda faded. The first hundred years we were really into each other.
TBN: You know, you’re not too far off the mark there, to be honest.
KB: Really? And then I came up with, just because that first scene with Sookie, it made it into a thing that Pam was sort of “do I want to eat her, kill her, keep her as a pet?” And then I realized that Pam is definitely…we weren’t calling it bisexual, it was like trisexual or something. She definitely doesn’t seem too picky.
TBN: Omnisexual, I think is the word.
KB: Yes, thank you, that’s it. She’s omnisexual. I love that about her.
TBN: Yeah, that’s our Pam. Very comfortable with anything and everything.
KB: That’s our Pam! Isn’t that great?
TBN: It’s a lot of fun to watch, but I’m not sure I’d want her as my friend.
KB: Uh yeah, “friend” in quotes, you know.
TBN: She’d be fun to party with. I’d love to party with Pam.
KB: Yeah, really. She’d be awesome to party with. In a crowded room. I think you just don’t want to be alone with her.
TBN: Pretty much. Yeah, she’s kinda creepy when she’s on her own.
TBN: Even when she’s dressed like June Cleaver. I was gonna ask you…so you go from, you know, your first day you’re wearing this corset and black leather and everything, so then what’s your reaction when you go to wardrobe and you see you’ve got this sweater set and sensible heels? I mean…
KB: Well this woman Audrey, who does the wardrobe, of course she’s meticulously gone through the books and, at this point, I’m just starting to be aware that there are books and trying to decide if I want to read them first, before the script or after the script. Because I’m realizing that they’re a little different. But Audrey tells me, “You know Pam, when she’s not working, is in like pastels and sweater sets and princess and goofy and stuff like that.” And I said, “Oh. My. God. That is fantastic.”
TBN: Isn’t that awesome?
KB: I thought it was so awesome and the whole crew was not aware of this, nor the director apparently of that episode. So when I came on the set, in the next outfit- in the khakis, my J.Crew outfit, they thought that that was what Kristin wore to the set and they were waiting for me to go change before shooting. And we finally went, “Oh no no no!” They go, “Kristin, how much time do you need?” And I was like, “Time? Um…none.” Because I kept thinking, “what? Time to learn my lines? I already learned them.”
TBN: Well she- Sookie- often refers to Pam in the books as a soccer mom.
KB: Oh my God, that is hysterical.
TBN: Yeah, because that’s pretty much what she always looks like when she’s not working. She looks like a soccer mom. Dresses like one…
KB: I love Pam. And then, you know, Audrey came up with someone which I think is subtle yet brilliant to us- because also I wore this outfit for weeks- was that she put sunglasses on my head. During the vampire trial and the next episode. We just thought that was endlessly entertaining. It just seemed so Pam…
TBN: To accessorize. Unnecessarily.
KB: To accessorize unnecessarily for the vampire trial. Like every single moment she was just loving immortality.
TBN: You got to speak a couple of Swedish lines on the show.
TBN: Did you have to learn that or did you know that or…?
KB: Well, in fact I’ve been meaning to get the Rosetta Stone for Swedish because I could have done more Swedish lines. We would be standing there on the set and Alexander would say something Swedish and Alan would say “oh say that in the take” and then he would say “and give Kristin something to answer back.” Well, you know, no pressure. So then we’d try to think of something that I could respond, that would make sense, that I could learn in one minute. And apparently the intonations of Swedish are very unique. So I thought I was a pretty good parrot but Alexander would just be laughing and he told me that I sound like a Russian prostitute. Because he went to see the episode, he had to do some additional sounds and he came back and I asked “how was my Swedish?” And he goes “well…not so good, but you’re a perfect Russian prostitute.”
TBN: Okay, I want to know how he knows that.
KB: Oh! Good point. Good point. That’s hysterical. You know, I’m going to go back 9 months later and go “uh huh…” And he’ll be like “you are fast on your feet, Bauer.”
TBN: You can go back to the recording and say “I’m not the only one.”
KB: Uh huh. I’m going to try to learn a little. I think it would help me if I could, because I can do accents really well. I think it would be good if we could have more Swedish next season.
TBN: Does that mean those lines are Alexander’s idea?
KB: What happened was that first episode where he says something along the lines of “the zoo is getting interesting,” it was in the script written in English, no it was written in Swedish. And he had just flown in from Stockholm and I had just flown in from Manila and we’re in the scene and he goes “do you know what this line is supposed to be?” And I said Cambodian and he goes “no, it’s Swedish.” And I go “why did I think it was Cambodian?” And he’s like “yeah yeah, thanks” and he went to talk to someone else. It’s like I don’t really know what continent I’m on, much less what language that is. I’m in Manila right now. And I’m in a corset and I can’t eat, drink, or pee. And he talked to the director and he said “oh we thought that was a Swedish line that meant ‘the zoo is getting interesting.’” And Alexander said “no, what you translated is car plane you man running” or something like that. So he’s got the script thinking “what the hell…?” So he helped them and gave them the correct Swedish and then they said “give Kristin something to say back.” And the best we could do was go [something resembling Swedish] which is something like “yes, I agree.”
TBN: Short, sweet, and simple.
KB: Yeah, yeah. Apparently in Russian.
TBN: In Russian prostitute.
KB: Yeah, but he brought a Swedish friend along to Vegas last weekend and he said that he had the Rosetta Stone CDs for me. So hopefully I can do better this season.
TBN: I’m sure. We’ll be looking forward to it. And you know we will be inundated with e-mails after every episode asking us “what did they say?”
KB: Oh that’s great!
TBN: And we’re like “um okay, I’ll play your silly game, what did they say?”
KB: Yeah, okay. You’re on. Well I saw in your questions here that in the book Pam has an English accent.
TBN: Yeah, because that’s where she’s from. She was…in face, I think she was pretty wealthy. I think she comes from a pretty wealthy family.
KB: Okay. That’s awesome.
TBN: And Eric finds her and turns her. The big lug.
KB: I know. The big lug!
TBN: The big jerk!
KB: Yeah, there was a line that ended up getting cut, where I said “Eric saved me from old age, disease, and wrinkles.”
TBN: And they cut it?
KB: The cut it. It was a great line. I was so sort of like “uh!” But you know, these things run over. The shoot more than they need so they can trim it and we lost that one. It was one of the casualties.
TBN: Hopefully it’ll be end up on a deleted scenes or something with the DVD set.
TBN: And you know, being the blooper whore that I am, I’m looking for those too.
KB: I love bloopers.
TBN: I love bloopers. Do you think we’ll get any?
KB: Well that’s the problem- what was that?
TBN: Do you think we’ll get any bloopers?
KB: I don’t know. You know they’re- I’m amazed…a friend of mine just rented something at Blockbuster and apparently they include an episode? And then another friend of mine said she saw signs at 7-11 and places around LA saying “Sold out of TruBlood.”
TBN: Yes, that was part of the viral marketing campaign.
KB: Oh my God. It’s just so- they’re marketing was just so incredibly brilliant. I’ve never seen anything like it. So I wouldn’t be surprised at all. And I mean the real bloopers that would be amazing- and I don’t know if they’ll really want to do this because it brings the vampires sorta back to human level- but the first time that I had to say a line with those teeth in. I hadn’t ever worn them. So it was the scene with Jason Stackhouse when he comes to Fangtasia and they said you’re going to say your lines, we’re gonna keep the camera rolling and we’re gonna slip a few teeth into your hand. Put them in and say the line again. And I said, “Can I rehearse that?” and they’re like “Rolling!” I’ll take that as a “no.” So I did it. They handed me my teeth, I put them in and what came out of my mouth….One tooth got caught inside my lip, one got caught outside my lip and it sounded like some evil Bugs Bunny character. And the entire set, which I couldn’t see, because we were shooting at night and they were all out there and they had a bright light on me, all I heard was that I just brought the house down. They were laughing so hard. And I just kept saying the line over and over until I could speak with the teeth in.
TBN: See now that’s the kind of stuff that they should put on bloopers because Stephen Moyer talks about that too. About how funny that was. And he says…
KB: Yeah. He says it was hysterical. Yes, the new vampires all standing around with their teeth trying to talk. ‘Cause it’s a thing.
TBN: Yes. Yes. He says now he understands why they always have vampires talking the way they do-“I vant to drink your blood”- because they can’t talk any other way.
KB: That’s it! And I went to Stephen and said “how the hell do you talk with these things in?” And he told me exactly what to do. He said, “You can’t try to have the teeth avoid your bottom people. You just got to take the pain.” You let it dig into your bottom lip and you just keep talking. You just it ignore it. Because we’re all trying to sort of find the place where they fit and that’s what causes you to look ridiculous.
KB: So I was like, oh you just take it.
TBN: So here you are laced into a corset, abusing your bottom lip, and playing it cool. That is a talent.
KB: Yeah, yeah. It’s a painful job. And that’s really the main thing-I remember this was a conversation with Alan- that every single scene that I have, I’m supposed to be immortal, impervious, strong and bold and there’s always something that’s happening to Kristin Bauer that makes that difficult like the teeth or when we shot in the graveyard with Stephen, my heels were sinking into the dirt.
TBN: I wondered about that.
KB: It was so- I kept falling over in takes. And the land was also slanted not in my favor so I was like, “Can I sit for part of this?” There’s always something where- below the neck- there’s something terribly wrong going on, but above the neck I just keep acting. And hope that I’m immortal.
TBN: Right, or at least that there’s a second life.
KB: Yes! Yes.
TBN: Well, what was the most fun scene, through the season, that you shot?
KB: Let’s see…that’s the thing, between the shooting…like, we had…okay, alright… I just remembered it…um, oh my God, the…right off the plane from the Philippines, around like hour 14, I was like unlike me, I’m gonna go lie down. So I went to go lie down and I fell asleep and they woke me around 2 in the morning and I open my eyes and I didn’t know where I was because I had been in my trailer in the Philippines and this was definitely not that trailer. Definitely a different trailer. And then I’m like “I’m not in my hotel room.” God love her, poor Laurie, she’s like “alright, we’re gonna go do the scene in the alley” and I remember I just said “no.” Yeah I just lost it like I don’t know who I am, where I am, or who you are. She’s like “Let me just give you a few minutes.” She came back, laced me up. I’m so tired, it is so cold outside. We’re putting my heels back on. My feet hurt so badly. And they take me into an alley and they show me to tracks, dolly tracks they’re called and they look like miniature train tracks with a camera. And they go down this crappy alley in Long Beach, California and there’s Anna, Stephen, me and Alex and all the crew and they say “we’re going to put you on this- basically- skateboard thing that’s on top of the tracks. We’ve got a rope pulling you, we’ve got another guy holding a rope that stops you.” And I’m like “are we making a student film? I mean what is this? And this is for the purpose of what?” And they say “this is so you and Eric look like you’re flying.” “Okay, and who’s holding the rope? Let me see their faces.” So we get on this dolly and I don’t know Alexander. And all day long we’ve been cordial but we haven’t, we don’t know each other. And he’s just off the plane and so am I. And Anna and Stephen, I don’t really know either. And Anna and Stephen have the harder jobs. He’s supposed to scoop up another human being into his arms and run behind us, down the tracks like she weighs a feather and he’s immortal. And I hear these feet clomping and [heavy breathing sounds]. And Anna…Anna goes…and after every take they’re trying to figure out how Stephen can look like she’s lighter and she’s going “if there’s one more discussion about the weight of my body…” And Alexander and I are, you know it’s hard when they’re pulling that thing to not look like you’re about to fall. So the whole thing is a complete catastrophe and apparently I’m looking like “get me out of this chicken-shit outfit.” So Anna came over to me and she’s laughing because she’d been watching my face and she took my arm and she’s laughing hysterically and she goes “Oh my God, if you could see your face…” She goes “listen, this is all a bad dream, and you’re going to wake up in the Philippines.” And I started laughing, Alexander started laughing, Stephen started laughing and we did this…pulling us up and down the alley for hours. It felt like hours. It was probably 2 hours, maybe it was an hour and a half, but it felt like many many hours. And I don’t know if I’ve ever laughed so hard on a set in my life. And after every take, the director would say “yeah…here’s the problem…” And Alexander would say “we look like we’re on a skateboard, being pulled down an alley?” And he goes “yeah, you don’t look like you’re flying.” So then we would try lifting off. He goes “can you lift off?” And I go, “how do you lift off, Alexander?” And he goes “I’m gonna bend my knees and come up.” And I say, “well what are you going to do with your arms?” And he puts them out like he was flapping them. I mean, it was the most hysterical thing. And then, Alexander thought…’cause he had to go redo his dialogue because of course there was wind. Oh, oh AND, to look like our hair was blowing, they discovered at a certain point that that was part of the problem, they had a guy with a fan plugged in running backwards in front of us. I’m like “are you serious?!” I mean how do they make The Matrix? I cannot believe that was how they did it. It was the funniest evening of my life. And it was so cold I was shaking. I was trying not to look like I was falling over. I was trying to lift off and my arms out behind me with my chest out and my chin up. And I said to the producers later “how does it look?” and they said “mmmm…well, we’re gonna do some special effects.” So I looked at Alexander and I said “reshoot” and he goes yeah. And Alexander thought, when he went to do the voiceover on it, and I asked “so how does it look? I heard it looks really good.” And he says “It doesn’t. It looks really cheesy.” I go, “Oh really? You’re kidding.” Well then they did some special effects on it. They discovered the reason we didn’t look like we were flying was because Alexander and I were on the same plank so our bodies should have been moving slightly apart. So they did some effects on it to do something like that and cut it down to one tiny second.
TBN: I know! I was gonna say all of that and it was literally five seconds.
KB: And that’s what they had to do to make it look believable. And the thing that looked the best was Stephen scooping up Anna.
TBN: That looked good.
KB: Yeah that looked really good because he really did it. He had to run down that alley, I don’t know…40 times? And try to not breathe.
TBN: Because he’s not supposed to breathe.
KB: Right, he’s not supposed to breathe. I mean Alexander and I…that, I think, was when our friendship began. Everybody. That was the most bonding, hysterical, painful…
TBN: It would have been easier if Alexander had just thrown you over his shoulder and said, “Come on, let’s go.”
KB: That’s it! Although, I’m a big gal. We were making comments about that at some point as well. And I was like “this conversation is going in an uncomfortable direction. I feel for you, Anna.” I don’t know if anyone can throw me over their shoulder. That would be so nice.
KB: To be a littler person.
TBN: Well, you know, it has its drawbacks- being little.
KB: It does? Are you little?
TBN: You get…well I’m 5’2” so I’m not little-little, but…you know, it’s…you can’t see over… you’re the shortest one in a crowd. You can never- you miss all the action, so…
KB: Yeah that’s true. I do see it all.
TBN: So what was the worst scene? The worst. Same one, right?
KB: Mmm, yeah I was gonna say probably the same one. Because of the pain, the fatigue, no food or water, the being cinched into that thing [corset]….I was so cold that my body, I couldn’t stop it from trembling. And I so trying so hard to not convulse in the take. It really, I bet it was the same one because the other ones we had- you know, the vampire trial was long and cold but um…there were the highs and the lows. Isn’t that the same with life, though?
KB: You know, it really- in hindsight and I would have done anything- I was saying throughout that skateboarding thing, I was saying “Beam me up, Scotty,” because I’m so done with that. But even that director ended up being a friend of mine. I mean we just all had such a great time, in hindsight.
TBN: Well it helps when you can have fun on the job, that’s for sure.
KB: And Alexander was supposed to, in that wig, say “Do come again” and the hair would go in his mouth. It was one comedy after another. There was so nothing cool about it. It was retarded. It was great.
TBN: Oh my gosh, my cheeks are killing me. I’m not going to be able to watch this scene again with a straight face.
KB: You oughta- now you have to go back and watch it. It’s truly…
TBN: Knowing what we know now.
KB: And then, you know, it’s just there were so many funny moments because I’m looking at the rope that the guy is holding that’s pulling and the guy that’s holding that’s stuck and is supposed to stop us from flying off the end of the track. And I look at the rope for the guy who’s gonna stop us and it’s coiled all over the ground and I said to Alexander, “I just wish…” and he goes, “That guy would take up the slack?” And we just got into this Vulcan mind-meld and we were in the same…you know, and just even that where he said, “Would take up the slack?” I was a goner. I was crying, I was laughing.