True Blood returns to our screens on June 13 with characters we already know and love (or love to hate), plus a slew of new characters for us to discover. We had the chance to talk to one of the new cast members recently, Lindsay Pulsipher who plays Crystal Norris. Because the season hasn’t begun, and we know they can’t talk spoilers, we refrained from asking for too many specifics about her role on True Blood. Instead, consider this our “get to know Lindsay” interview as we prepare for the new season.
Lindsay was suffering from allergies when we talked to her, so we jokingly decided we’d pretend we were in a blues band together. Right away we knew she has a good sense of humor! Lindsay is from Salt Lake City, Utah, where she grew up snowboarding and enjoying the outdoors. She revealed worked at one of the resorts there in Utah in high school, but an accident caused her to dislocate both shoulders and knees (!), so she hasn’t done much snowboarding recently. Now she enjoys taking her dog hiking in Los Angeles.
Acting is also something she has enjoyed since she was young.
“I’m going to divulge some very nerdy information,” she laughs. “I used to make either my little sister or my best friend act out these plays with me. I was doing that from the time I can remember. It was always something I enjoyed doing.”
We asked her what sorts of plays she was writing as a child and Lindsay laughingly revealed that she was “obsessed with Christmas” stories.
Lindsay’s mom was a theater actress, and seeing her mom on stage inspired her. “Everytime I saw her on stage, she was a different person. I was so fascinated by that.” Lindsay persuaded her mom to let her act and was involved in community theater for several years until high school when she was drawn to music and painting. She then became fascinated with “film as an art form”, particularly the works of Julie Christie and Audrey Hepburn, which opened her eyes to “a whole new world as far as acting goes.”
She auditioned for Touched By An Angel, which filmed in Salt Lake City, and appeared in four episodes on that show. After that, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue her lifelong dream of acting. Several guest starring roles led to a regular gig on AMC’s The Beast, starring the late Patrick Swayze and Travis Fimmel. Lindsay recalled that filming the pilot felt like filming a movie.
“When I saw the pilot, it was a procedural show, but it definitely had a darker edge to it, which is what drew me to it.”
Lindsay’s character, Rose, “is kind of the light of the show.” She felt that she was meant to bring some softness to an otherwise masculine, gritty show.
“She was kind of a distraction from everything that was going on, especially for Travis Fimmel’s character.”
Moving from a realistic, gritty show, Lindsay landed the role of Crystal Norris on True Blood, still a rather dark show, but in a whole different way. Although she hadn’t read the books ahead of time, several of Lindsay’s friends had and were so excited for her when she told them she was going to be Crystal.
“She’s been so much fun to play. She’s the complete opposite of Rose on The Beast. Rose was so refined, she knew what she wanted and was going to law school. She had her head on straight, whereas Crystal is a little…rough around the edges,” Lindsay chuckles. “Everyday I go to work, I’m so excited.”
“The biggest challenge [playing Crystal] is her complexity. She’s multi-layered. She has a lot of things going on, so it’s been a challenge to be true to all the things that are going on in her life,” muses Lindsay. “But I have to say that I enjoy a challenge, and I think I do better when I have a challenge. It keeps me on my toes.”
She couldn’t tell us much about Crystal specifically, but knowing how important hair is within the fandom, we asked her if Crystal was going to be blond (Lindsay is a natural blond). As we know from the teaser HBO released a couple of weeks ago, Lindsay will indeed keep her natural hue on True Blood.
“I know in the books she’s described as dark-haired and dark-skinned, and I’m very Scandinavian looking, which is quite the opposite,” she observed. “I think it was an intentional choice.”
Working on the set of True Blood is also a treat for Lindsay. She recalls that her first day on set, she felt “instantly at home, everyone was so welcoming.” Being the new girl can be tough, but not with this group!
Prior to starting work on True Blood, Lindsay filmed a movie called The Oregonian in Seattle and Los Angeles that will probably be on the festival circuit this year. She’s also signed on for the remake of Bonnie and Clyde, although she’s not sure when it will begin production. Also due for release soon is Do Not Disturb, a “collection of short films”, in which she starred opposite Eric Balfour.
We asked Lindsay if she was ready for the fan reaction once she makes her debut on the show.
“I know it has a huge following and people are really, really into it. I just hope I don’t disappoint! I’m excited, but I don’t know if I can prepare myself for it,” she laughed.
Painting is a big part of Lindsay’s life – “It keeps me sane out here in L.A!” She is currently working on several commissions and recently showed at Canvas 4 Cancer, a fundraiser for research for cancer. Lindsay also supports Stand Up 2 Cancer and The Mutt Movement.
If you’d like to hear our interview with Lindsay Pulsipher, complete with her “scratchy voice”, you can listen to it on True-Blood.net Radio.