ALCATRAZ: Parminder Nagra Talks About the Twists and Turns - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

ALCATRAZ: Parminder Nagra Talks About the Twists and Turns

January 30, 2012 by  

Is anyone else really intrigued by the new Fox series ALCATRAZ? Right now, it feels like there is so much potential and I’m insanely curious to know what the heck is going on with all these returned prisoners.

To try and get some answers, I chatted with ALCATRAZ star Parminder Nagra (Lucy) to see what she could spill about her new series…

Lucy is a woman of many secrets!
Parminder Nagra: She’s not easy to work out, especially in the first few episodes…and then the reveal [of her being at Alcatraz before everyone disappeared] happens and you’re like, what’s going on there? And I have to say, that was one of the most exciting moments for me, because it opens the character into a whole other sphere. It just makes it very interesting, not only for me, but for the audience that is watching it. And it will keep people coming back for more. But yeah, she’s a tough nut to crack. She doesn’t give things away too easily, and I think it’s going to become more and more apparent what Lucy’s agenda is in terms of the whole thing with Alcatraz.

How much did you know when you signed on for the role?
PN: Not too much, to be honest with you. Not too much was there initially, and it really was a case of when the show was talked about and the character was talked about, there really wasn’t much of Lucy on the page at all. And it really was something that [ALCATRAZ co-creator] Liz [Sarnoff] had said, “Whoever embodies this character will hopefully…we’ll start to see what happens with it and how we can flesh it out. And it really depended on who ends up being in this role.”

And so really, to a certain extent, you take a leap of faith because when you don’t know too much information, it’s difficult. But the fact of the matter is, you know intrinsically it’s a J.J. Abrams show, so you know there’s going to be mysteries and mythology and a lot of questions answered. And there’s going to be a lot of frustrating moments, a lot of intriguing moments, that much you do know. So you have to go with it, quite frankly, and make the right choices that you can make at the time. And hopefully with the luxury of doing a TV series, you get to flesh it out. That’s the nice thing of doing something like this — you get to keep exploring it.

Were you looking for a project that had these mysterious elements before you joined ALCATRAZ?
PN: Not particularly, to be honest with you. I just wanted to do something that was going to be challenging and was going to be good and good fun. It’s all about timing in this business and it just happened to work out that the time that I was just starting to come back to working, this project happened to be there and it happened to be a J.J. Abrams project. I auditioned for it and that was it, really. I wasn’t particularly looking for something that had a sci-fi element…my only criteria was wanting to do something that was slightly different than I had done before, if I had any criteria I was working to. It’s been my biggest job back since I took a break and had my son. It’s a nice job to come back to, honestly, so that’s how it happened.

And J.J. Abrams is notorious for having such strong female leads, so it’ll be fun to see how these women grow.
PN: Yeah, I like the fact that he does that and there’s not a ton of those roles around. There are all these twists and turns and it certainly makes them more compelling. Not only as an audience, but also for an actor. It’s not just a run-of-the-mill and that’s what I like about it.

Are there a lot more reveals about Lucy and her story in the upcoming episodes?
PN: Yeah. There will be. I think with everybody, that will be the case as well. I think you’ll start seeing people’s agendas start coming out where you’re like, “Oh, wait a moment, what’s happening there?” I think you’re going to be questioning who these people are.

And where they’ve been.
PN: And where they’ve been. And why are they there. And who’s controlling all of this? [Laughs]

There are a lot of questions!
PN: [Laughs] Believe me, I think I’ve asked the same questions. It’s fun. It just makes it all fun at the end of the day.

So what is your biggest question about her from where you’re at right now?
PN: I myself am just fascinated about where this is going to go, to be honest with you. Even I’m like, “Who is she?” Who is this — I know that I have this very close relationship with Emerson, and it’s just going to be interesting to see how this plays out and what that means for everybody. And those are my questions about what’s happening. It’s exciting. Hopefully if I’m asking those questions, somebody else is going to be going, “What?” But hopefully not incredulously.

Is Lucy going to be recovering for a bit from her injury?
PN: Sort of. I’m not sure how much I’m allowed to answer of that. All I can say is, “Sort of.” [Laughs]

Obviously some of these questions are a little difficult for you to answer without giving too much away. Have you gone to someone like Jorge Garcia (Doc Soto), who obviously had years of LOST experience on how to say something without ruining it all?
PN: I think what it is is you’re sort of not given too much information anyway. All I know is the episodes we’ve filmed. In terms of what’s happening, I don’t know that information, so it’s not like I could spoil anything. I think a lot of that cast on LOST had the same experience where it wasn’t even really anything to say because half the time they didn’t even really know, apart from the previous episodes that had already been filmed. I suppose it’s a good device: the less we know, the less we’re able to spoil. Because sometimes you’re in the moment and you go, “Damn, I gave that away. You’re sort of at the mercy of the writer gods for your future.

Well, so far, it seems like a lot of the questions fans have are about your character.
PN: Right. [Laughs] I’m going to be like, “Well, now you guys have to tell me something.” I’ve just had a lot of fun playing her. It’s just totally — the whole reveal opened up everything for me and put me in the position of being able to really sink my teeth into something. It was a welcome addition, I have to say.

I was actually up on the sets a few months back, and I have to say, it’s disturbingly realistic to the real Alcatraz. Is it ever creepy to film there?
PN: It’s a little creepy, I have to say, walking around on those sets. Luckily there’s a crew around there, but there have been times when I’ve gotten lost and I’ve gone around and around in circles and it’s just quiet. It’s cell upon cell. It is a little creepy around there.

Before I let you go, is there anyone you’ve been pleasantly surprised to share scenes with?
PN: How do I say this without giving anything away? Surprised to share scenes with, no. I’ve had some pretty amazing scenes with people who have been guests of the week and the prisoners. Each prisoner that has come back, I think people are just going to be blown away by these guys. Each person that has been on this set is wonderful and really talented. They really do blow me away.

ALCATRAZ airs Mondays at 9 PM on Fox.


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One Response to “ALCATRAZ: Parminder Nagra Talks About the Twists and Turns”

  1. Lisa Collins on January 31st, 2012 5:42 pm

    Thought the show would be ok, I’d be watching my friend Leon Rippy and staring at mr. Hadsome Sam O’Neill but it’s riveting. Great plot, exciting characters, some history lessons and cliff hangers each week. Can’t wait to see what happens. Thrilling storylines!