Exclusive Interview – Laurie Fortier on The Walking Dead & Hemlock Grove
Tai Freligh chats with Laurie Fortier about her role as Agatha in the final season of The Walking Dead…
Laurie Fortier has been working as a professional actress for over 20 years and has a wide range of expertise in both TV and film. She has acted alongside legends including Michelle Pfeiffer, James Gandolfini, James Caan, Dennis Hopper, Martin Landau, Danny Aiello and Hugh Laurie to name only a few. Most notably, Laurie played real life cop Donna Kading, opposite Josh Duhamel in the USA Network TV series, Unsolved: A True Crime Story about the murder of Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur. She can also be seen in popular series including The CW’s DC’s Swamp Thing, every version of CSI (CSI Vegas, CSI Miami & CSI NY), Hawaii Five-O, Castle, Rush, Stalker, and 2 seasons of the Netflix original series Hemlock Grove opposite Dougray Scott and Famke Jansen. Laurie has continued to prove her abilities to act in different genres by starring in successful Lifetime movies including Into the Arms of Danger, In Bed with a Killer, Erasing His Dark Past and My Mom’s Darkest Secrets. She was most recently cast as Agatha in the final season of The Walking Dead on AMC. Flickering Myth’s Tai Freligh spoke to her about the new role, her long acting career and what it’s like working through a pandemic.
Congratulations on the new role for TWD’s 11th and final season. What was your audition like for The Walking Dead?
My audition for TWD was like most others, except for the fact that I had to sign an NDA and they were dummy sides/pages. Because of Covid, all of our auditions right now are self tapes, so I filmed myself from the comforts of my bedroom. Very DIY. When my agent called a week later to tell me I was their choice, I said, “Great! Me and how many others are up for it”? He replied, “No, you are their only choice”.
What can you tell us about Agatha, as she is not a character from the comic books?
I am the leader of a small gang of warriors called The Wardens, which Maggie meets while she is away. She is described as the leader of the Wardens. We know that Maggie (Lauren Cohen) is with them currently.
Can you tell us any more about this new group and how much screen time you share with her?
All I can say is that we are very fond of Maggie.
What was it like working on set during a pandemic?
These are obviously very trying times for everyone, but I have to say TWD production went to great lengths to make sure everyone stayed safe (we tested 2 times a day while filming) and they handled it with such great care.
Any funny set stories?
I had an inner fangirl moment when Norman Reedus (Daryl) pulled me aside and gave me a quick tutorial on how to use a bow and arrow lol.
Who was your favorite character to work with or opposite on the show?
Well that’s easy. LC (Lauren Cohan) and I hit it off immediately. She was like a sister. Kind, generous and incredibly talented. She was also very helpful on set showing me the in’s and out’s of killing walkers.
Talk a little bit about your character on the Netflix show Hemlock Grove?
I played Marie, wife of Dougray Scott in Hemlock Grove. She was cuckolded and unaware her husband was having an affair… (poor Marie).
You’ve been acting for a long time. What got you into it and did you think you would be 20+ years into it and still going strong at this point?
What got me into acting was a love of people and a desire to understand them. For years growing up I always wanted to be a psychologist. Acting allows me this through getting to work on different characters; I learn people from the inside out. I can’t even believe I’ve been fortunate enough to do this for as long as I have.
Do you have a preference between television and movie acting?
No, it’s all the same to me. I am drawn to characters.
Who has been your favorite actor/actress to work with? Director?
Actress: Claire Danes
Director: Greg Yaitanes
If not acting, what would you be doing right now?
Lying on beach in Greece with as little clothes on as possible.
Give us a preview of what you have coming up next?
I just played a character inspired by Ghislaine Maxwell that I’m really excited about!