Tagged under:2015, Interview
Posted by on 2 January 2015

via IGN:

FOX’s Gotham kicks off the second half of its first season on Monday, January 5th with the episode “Rogues’ Gallery.” And while Jim Gordon’s (Ben McKenzie) partnership with Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue) might be over, a new one is beginning with Arkham Asylum’s Dr. Leslie Thompkins – played by Firefly/Homeland’s Morena Baccarin.

I recently spoke with Baccarin, who’d just started filming her role at the time, about playing (a younger version of) a famous Batman comic book character, the look of Arkham Asylum’s interior on the show, and why Dr. Leslie pairs up so well with Jim Gordon.

IGN: What can you tell us about the Dr. Leslie character you’re playing? She’s obviously a younger version of the one comic book fans know. How close will she be to the source material?

Morena Baccarin: Yeah. They’re not sticking too close to the original mythology from the comics. Basically she and Jim meet at Arkham Asylum where he winds up working after the last episode. And they sort of hit it off because they’re both two people who are trying to do the right thing in a city that’s corrupt. And, like him, she’s someone who doesn’t really stand for bulls***. She’s very pragmatic and isn’t fazed by the craziness of Gotham. So they’re pretty drawn to each other and they wind up teaming up.

IGN: Is she just as stubborn as he is then?

Baccarin: [laughs] I think somewhat, yes. But he’s still a bit more stubborn than she is so he has more of an edge than she does.

IGN: On the show, we’ve seen the outside of Arkham a few times. What does the inside look like?

Baccarin: It’s a little comic book-y, for sure. It’s stylized, in the way that a lot of things are in the Gotham world. It’s an insane asylum, so it’s dark. It’s very shadowed and creepy. I really loved the episode. It’s a great introduction to my character, who’s working in this crazy crazy place that’s, of course, touched by Gotham’s rampant corruption. There’s a very big and dark underworld at play.

IGN: In the comics, Leslie was friends with Thomas and Martha Wayne. Will this also be the case on the show?

Baccarin: I believe so. I think so. We haven’t gotten that far yet with my character but I think that it’s in the works.

IGN: It’s probably impossible for any character on Gotham to avoid action and danger, so can we assume that Leslie will see her fair share?

Baccarin: Oh yes. Most definitely. In the first episode back in the new year, of course chaos ensues in the asylum and she’s forced to deal with it. I’m not saying I had to do a ton of stunts, but there was some intense stuff that I had to do and there will be more of that in the future as well.

IGN: Do you know why Leslie is so gung-ho about doing what’s right? Do you know her backstory yet?

Baccarin: Actually, I don’t know. We haven’t discovered that yet. They haven’t told me too much so far. I kind of get things revealed to me slowly. But she’s somebody who really stands up for what she believes in and has a strong set of morals. She’s not a goody two-shoes or anything like that. I mean, she understands how things work in the city and how things sometimes have to get done. But I think she’s also trying to live in a world that she wants to live in and can be proud of. She’s not somebody who’s too precious about things. She can get down and dirty, and she does. And she wants to be a part of whatever force can make the city a better place.

IGN: You’ve been in a lot of notable sci-fi and genre shows. Is the fact that this is a DC series something that drew you to it?

Baccarin: For sure. I really loved how the show looks and how it’s written. And how it’s stylized. And the actors who’ve been involved so far. It all drew me in. And it’s a great character. I’m actually not too familiar with the comic book world, believe it or not. It’s not something I grew up reading so it’s just not that familiar to me. But I thought that the world that was created on this show was really intriguing. And that they did a really great job of making it accessible to everybody.

IGN: You’ve also voiced DC characters before in animation. Was playing a live version the next logical step?

Baccarin: I guess so. It was probably inevitable. There are so many of them. It’s probably inevitable now that in every actor’s career now they’ll wind up playing some sort of comic book character in a movie or on a TV show.

IGN: You’ve also provided the voice for Dr. Wells’ computer on The Flash. Can we expect you back?

Baccarin: I think so. I think that computer’s sticking around! It’s here to stay. So we’ll see what winds up happening. But that’s a fun one.

IGN: There are different worlds on Gotham. The cop world. The mob scene. Wayne Manor. Are there any characters you hope to interact with as Leslie?

Baccarin: Really just everybody on the show is my answer. I think it would be fun to meet the kids. Bruce Wayne and Selina. I think she’s great. It would be really fun to infiltrate the mafia side of things, though somehow I don’t really see my character getting into too much of that. The whole thing is just all so intriguing. Every area of the show is so distinct and everyone’s got such unique, specific personalities that it would be fun to see how my character would fit in.

IGN: What’s it like working with Ben McKenzie? He’s always seemed like someone who’s really excited to be on the series.

Baccarin: Yeah, he’s great. He’s really giving it his all. Everything he’s got. He’s super fun. We have a good time and he and I make a really fun pair of characters on the show. They have a great interaction between them and it’s only going to grow. It’s been great.

IGN: Now that the story is taking us into Arkham Asylum, will we see any new Batman villains on the show? Anyone that might be introduced through the asylum?

Baccarin: Through the asylum? I don’t think so. It’s too early for me to tell you right now. But you never know on this show. You might see somebody once and then three episodes later you’re like “Oooh, that’s who that is.” IGN Logo

Gotham returns to FOX on Monday, January 5th with the episode “Rogues’ Gallery.”