North Texas Daily

Interview: The Women of “Sons of Anarchy” Take Us Into The Club

Interview: The Women of “Sons of Anarchy” Take Us Into The Club

Interview: The Women of “Sons of Anarchy” Take Us Into The Club
September 24
17:03 2013

Preston Barta / Film Critic

The sixth season of FX’s hit series “Sons of Anarchy” premiered a couple weeks back, and it’s off to a promising start. The North Texas Daily had the opportunity to chat with its stars Katey Sagal and Maggie Siff about their roles and what this season has in store for viewers.

Every character has to make a lot of tough choices and they have to live with the choices they make. Thinking of all the tough decisions that your character, Gemma, had to make throughout the course of the show, what action was the hardest to wrap your head around and justify doing on camera?

Katey Sagal: “Well, at the time, sending Clay to prison last season was a tough choice because she knew that it was a setup. That was tough for her. I can’t specifically think of any because there have been so many. She kind of comes out of the situation and she has to think on her feet right at the moment, so I think at the time she never thinks there’s that tough a decision. They’re really what she has to do, if that makes sense. In other words, it’s high stakes all the time. If you think about it, our show takes place in about a week. What you see in a season is about a week or two weeks.  So there are high stakes going on all the time. They pretty much react instinctively and there’s not a lot of time to think, ‘Is this a hard thing to do.’”

We’ve seen Tara become more like Gemma over the years. The prison scene at the end of the season six premiere episode really showed her manifest her ‘Gemma-ness.’ What has it been like for you playing that conflict— becoming this person that you really are trying to escape and not be like?

Maggie Siff: “Yes, it’s pretty fascinating. I think there’s something almost magnetizing about Gemma and Tara. The way I’ve been thinking about it recently is Gemma is like this fierce mother figure. She’s just such a powerful matriarch and she loves fiercely and will protect to the death her children, her clan— anything she feels is going to threaten the sanctity of her family. Tara is like this quintessential orphan who’s parentless and she’s been so in need of parents and protectors and people she can look to. So between those two things there’s this magnetism, which is why I think they’re so drawn to each other and repelled by each other.

Gemma is the only person around who serves that role for Tara. It’s a huge source of conflict because I think while she desperately needs a parent she desperately doesn’t want to become Gemma. It’s just had her bouncing back and forth between states of mind over the last six years. It’s really fun to play, especially with Katey, who I love. She’s a very maternal figure but she’s such a fierce actress we just flip in and out of these modes acting and hating each other and then love each other as people. It’s all there for us to play with. It’s a fun relationship.”

When an actor plays a doctor, they can go talk to a doctor. When an actor plays a lawyer, they can go talk to a lawyer. When an actor plays the president of a motorcycle club or the wife of one, who do you go talk to— to kind of study and check that authenticity?

Sagal: “That’s a good question. I tried to do research on the women in the motorcycle culture when I got the job. There’s very little written about them. There’s really a lot written about the presidents of very famous motorcycle clubs. We actually have TA’s on our show and Kurt Sutter, the show’s creator and writer, has relationships with some of those people since beginning the show. So it was kind of easy to find out that.

The women and what I did with Gemma— she’s quite a bit of creative license in that she’s the matriarch of any little society. Definitely her wardrobe and her saunter and all of that are an easy thing to find from even observing the women in the culture. Her attitude and ‘stand by her man’ is reminiscent of any high political or regal figure that you could really name. She’s the queen bee of that society. I don’t know if that really answers your question, but I guess the answer was that it was very difficult to find actual people to talk to.”

Maggie, I know you graduated as an English major, so my question to you is actually about the writing of “Sons of Anarchy.” I was wondering what you thought really stuck out about “Sons” in terms of the writing, and why do you think people connect to such a dark world?

Siff: “My feeling about the script when I first read it for the very first time, when I read that pilot, what I wished people could see, although I think it comes across, are Kurt’s descriptions of events on the page, his descriptions of the action sequences, his descriptions of what’s going on inside the minds of the characters, and what’s happening. He writes very beautifully. It’s very medic— it’s swift, it’s funny and it kind of sweeps you along. I think that’s in the show. I mean, to think that the feeling of heart and flesh and bikes and the motion of all that storytelling, he’s writing on a grand scale. You feel that when you read the scripts.

The juxtaposition of the dark material up against his incredible sense of humor is the thing that actually makes the show work. He’s just very skilled that way. I think it took us a little while in the first season to figure out the tone of the show. I can’t really take responsibility for it, but he really figured out how those things coincide side-by-side.”

And lastly, I know many students at our university are fans of “Fifty Shades of Grey.” Have things changed on set since Charlie Hunnam was cast as Christian Grey?

Sagal: “There’s a lot more paparazzi there. We’re inundated now with taking pictures of our movie star. I love Charlie. I know that he thought long and hard about taking that role because he would not take it lightly. I don’t know the director but he really likes the director. I’ve watched Charlie work for the last six years. This is a kid that is 100% committed to what he gets committed to.

So he’s somewhat ‘methody.’ He embodies what it is he’s done on our show and I’m sure he’s going to be just awesome and will bring all of it— whatever it is he needs to bring. It’ll be great.”

“Sons of Anarchy” airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on FX.

About Author



Related Articles

1 Comment

No Comments Yet!

There are no comments at the moment, do you want to add one?

Write a comment

Write a Comment

The Roundup

<script id="mcjs">!function(c,h,i,m,p){m=c.createElement(h),p=c.getElementsByTagName(h)[0],m.async=1,m.src=i,p.parentNode.insertBefore(m,p)}(document,"script","");</script>

Search Bar

Sidebar Thumbnails Ad

Twitter Feed

North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@marialawsonn: check out our first issue of the semester, and my first as editor-in-chief🥳
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
Happy Thursday! Our first issue of the semester is out on newsstands today. 📰🎊Or read our online edition 📱:
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@samthornfelt: I’m covering the Denton Black Film Festival for @ntdaily. If you’re attending this year’s virtual event, DM me! I’d love to hear about your experience!
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
@MeanGreenMBB: 🖐 In A RowThank you Mean Green Nation for showing out this week! #GMG
h J R
North Texas Daily @ntdaily
SPORTS: Early offensive effort boosts men’s basketball to win📝@TylerLukerNTD 📸 @mariacranemedia
h J R

Sidebar Bottom Block Ad

Flytedesk Ad