‘I’m thank­ful for what I had in fash­ion – but I was never re­ally that pas­sion­ate about it'

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - TV Guide - - The Last Word -

“THESE days I give very lit­tle at­ten­tion to modelling. It was re­ally great for me. I got to travel and meet great people. I’m su­per thank­ful for what I had in the fash­ion world – but I was never re­ally that pas­sion­ate about it.

This ( Vik­ings) has been such a treat for me be­cause I’ve been look­ing to make the tran­si­tion (from modelling to act­ing) for the past few years.

My Vik­ings char­ac­ter, Princess As­laug, was a queen in Norse mythol­ogy so when I got the part I did a lot of re­search but also spoke a lot to se­ries cre­ator Michael Hirst (the writer of Cate Blanchett’s El­iz­a­beth) about what he wanted.

You can look her up but there isn’t a whole lot of in­for­ma­tion out there to cre­ate a full, real per­son.

We both agreed the big thing for her was she was or­phaned and be­lieved her par­ents’ fame was more im­por­tant than her – that’s a pretty big deal for some­one grow­ing up. Not hav­ing that re­la­tion­ship with her par­ents and al­ways won­der­ing what could have been, I think, makes As­laug a bit un­trust­ing of the people around her.

I don’t think she has re­ally ex­pe­ri­enced ever be­ing a part of a lov­ing fam­ily. That in­forms a lot of her be­hav­iour.

We’ve had a four-year time jump in sea­son two and As­laug moved on quite a bit. She has popped out a cou­ple of kids to Vik­ing Rag­nar Loth­brok (Travis Fim­mel) and is preg­nant with a third.

I don’t like to use the term ‘home wrecker’ or ‘mis­tress’ but she is in a re­la­tion­ship with a man (Rag­nar) who has al­ready been in a re­la­tion­ship with some­one (Lagertha, played by Kath­eryn Win­nick), so she is fairly sus­pi­cious about what he is do­ing.

Travis is great to work with. He has a re­ally good work ethic. He keeps things re­ally fun and light-hearted on set but he cares a lot about the project.

I re­ally like the way Michael deals with all the el­e­ments of magic and myth and the sto­ries of the gods and re­li­gion. He puts it to the viewer and says, ‘This is what the Vik­ings be­lieved in – whether you be­lieve it or not, that’s up to you’.

Vik­ings is pri­mar­ily about a man and the things he did.

He took a Vik­ing army and ex­plored and raided, which makes it very mas­cu­line. But there are also some won­der­ful fe­male char­ac­ters.

Lagertha is this kick-arse woman and fans love her. Then you’ve also got Siggy, played by Jes­salyn Gil­sig, who is this mas­ter­ful schemer be­hind the scenes.

If some­one other than Michael was writ­ing a show about Vik­ings, they might not have in­cluded women like that. We’re all very thank­ful.”

VIK­INGS

MON­DAY, 8.35PM, SBSONE

With Colin Vick­ery

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