Monday, February 5, 2007

That's my girl Evi!

Lost Magazine came out with an interview with Evangeline Lilly speaking of her character Kate. Josh speaks of Sawyer too but I think Evi's thoughts on the mini arc are particulary Skate affirming. Kate may never be able to settle down with either man, but it would seem she really does love Sawyer, according to Evi.

Read 'em and weep Bubbleheads.

Transcript courtesy of Leah Kate from LF:

Uncaged and Untamed

Not only are Kate and Sawyer out in the open, so is their love for one another. With Season Three exploding back onto our screens, Evangeline Lilly and Josh Holloway talk exclusively about their intense time by the Hydra station, and the direction Lost is heading in.

Words: Tara DiLullo

From the moment they first laid eyes on each other in the wreckage of Flight 815, there's been a slowly building passion burning between Kate Austen and James "Sawyer" Ford.

Both damaged souls with shady pasts, they are fiercely independent even in the wilds of their new home in the jungle. Despite being stranded in the middle of the Pacific, they hold fast to their adopted armor, keeping their distance from those who reach out to them. Yet their metaphorical fences don't apply to one another, as they've connected in a smoldering dance, testing one another's comfort zones while revealing small increments of their true selves. Be it a sexy kiss by a tree, or Sawyer's nickname for Kate of "Freckles," this pair of kindred souls have been captivating one another and Lost audiences since the show began.

While there may be many fans who were hoping for Jack and Kate to finally admit their feelings to each other, that wasn't the story that unfolded in the first third of season three. While the three were held by the Others, it was Kate and Sawyer - stuck in their cages across from one another - that bonded over exhausting manual labor and fear, as their imminent death loomed over them. Terrified for one another, and emotionally and physically broken, the pair finally succumbed to their feelings and gave in to their mutual passion. It's been a long time coming for actors Evangeline Lilly and Josh Holloway. The duo have worked alongside one another for two and a half years now, both maturing in their craft as they've been able to evolve their characters together.

Season three has already provided Lilly and Holloway with plenty of surprises and challenges. Left uncertain of where this year would take them at the end of season two, Lilly says she was immediately relieved upon returning to work. "When I first started reading the scripts, I was really, really excited because I had told [Lost magazine] that between seasons one and two I had hoped and expected to see stronger sides of Kate come out and it hadn't happened. But this season, the ultimate happened where they actually did go exactly where I was hoping they would go." For Holloway, Sawyer's predicament brought to mind some deja vu. "If you notice, there were some similarities between where Sawyer was emotionally in the beginning of season two and where he was emotionally in the opening of season three," Holloway explains. "Sawyer, Michael, and Jin thought they were actually captured by the Others, before they found out later that Eko, Ana-Lucia and that whole gang were actually survivors from the plane as well. In the season three opening, Jack, Kate and Sawyer are in captivity by the actual Others. Since we ended season two on a cliffhanger with the three of them being captured, I wasn't as surprised as I was excited when I found us in the Others' camp. I thought the writers did an amazing job in how they introduced the Others. There were just so many questions about them and to start finding bits and pieces of answers was extremely exciting."

The captivity storyline also allowed the actors to explore the deepest issues that plague both Kate and Sawyer - their rabid fear of exposing their vulnerable sides to the world. Instead of hinting at their issues, as touched upon in their flashbacks, the cages allowed the writers and the actors to jump right into the emotional fray. "The very first episode, Kate was separated from the boys, so to speak, and she was left to her own devices," Lilly explains about her scenes in A Tale of Two Cities. "Looking Ben directly in the eyes and facing down what is a 'creepy monster,' so to speak. Ben is depicted in a way that is really quite terrifying - even for the men that are larger than him and more imposing than him physically. Ben has such a psychological presence and so I really wanted to play those moments where she was obviously frightened and vulnerable. However, despite those weaknesses and fears, she was able to rise up and face him head on. I think it was a defining moment at the beginning of the season that would reflect who she was going to be and how she was going to behave over the next few episodes, until we see them leave the cages. I think [the writers] wrote Kate in such a beautiful way. She has continued to be more and more vulnerable, and reveal more and more of herself, but she's returned to her strength. I think that is true healing when you don't have to become weak, but you are willing to become vulnerable."

Surprisingly, one of the tools the writers used to shed the emotional layers for Kate was putting her in a frilly dress. Lilly laughs and offers, "Yeah, it's funny because they have been trying to get Kate in a dress for a really long time. I have perpetually fought the issue because my creative standpoint is that I am the 'defender of this character.' She is my responsibility and I have said, 'I cannot make sense creatively of Kate choosing to wear a dress.' Yet the producers have wanted to put her in one in the flashbacks. Finally they found a way that creatively, it made complete sense to put Kate in a dress and for the first time ever, I didn't have anything to say about it. I was like, 'OK, that makes sense, and it would be a clever way to try and break Kate down.' I thought it was really hilarious when they found a creatively integral way to get Kate in a dress!" Yet the dress did exactly as hoped, not only for Kate, but for Lilly too. "I think it really threw me for a loop for the first little while. I was very much out of my element. Even walking onto the set with all of the crew - who are so used to me playing Kate in that very rough and tumble way - to walk onto set in a dress was unnerving. I actually had to go through a similar thing that Kate went through. I had to buck up and maintain my performance and the character regardless of what she was wearing. I also had to overcome it and not feel insecure and uncomfortable and do my job."

According to Lilly, she also feels the writers hit the right notes metaphorically with the cages. "When we started the season, I called up Damon and said, 'How brilliant are you?' You have now taken Kate and Sawyer and put both of them into a situation that is their worst nightmare. More than anything in the world, they are afraid to be caged. They have spent their lives avoiding it. In Josh's flashback, you see that Sawyer has been in prison. We don't know at this point if [Kate's] ever been in prison and broken out, but she's devoted her life to avoiding being in prison and now she's caged."

Over the first six episodes of season three, the pair fight their circumstances, and they eventually come to terms with where they are and what they will do to protect one another. With that mutual understanding of what they mean to each other, the stage was set for that moment many fans were waiting for - Kate and Sawyer finally making love. Holloway admits he's been waiting for the moment for ages. Echoing fan sentiments, he says, "The love triangle between Jack, Kate, and Sawyer has been going on for a while now. Naturally, after a certain amount of time invested, it becomes necessary for the audience to see some kind of resolution." For Lilly, she says it was a moment that finally felt earned. "By virtue of being caged together, in a way, they were forced to intimacy. That has an effect on a human being, to face your worst nightmare has an effect on you, which is unsettling and unnerving and strips you bare. I feel that is a huge part of how Kate became vulnerable enough to cry out that she loves a man and actually offer him her kiss, instead of letting him kiss her. I think because she was stripped so bare, when Sawyer says, 'I was trying to give you hope,' the idea that in all of this hell he was trying to protect Kate broke her down. It opened her up to offer him this little nugget of love, which was her kiss. Even after she did it, he asks, 'What was that for?' and she says, 'I don't know,' when clearly she knows. Obviously, the actual answer is, 'I love you, and I don't know how to say it because I am afraid to say it.' He is so much like her that when he she says that, he hears, 'I love you,' and then kisses her back. I think the writers did it so beatifully because it was real and grown up."

While many fans expected the sex, the exchange of the word "love" between the two was more surprising than the actual deed. "The reality of when you first say 'I love you" to somebody, in my experience, it's never some grandiose thing. You've been wanting to say it for so long that by the time it comes out of your mouth, it's the most obvious thing in the world." But the actual words coming from Sawyer's mouth, in earnest, was still a huge moment. Holloway concurs. "It was tricky. As we all know, 'I love you' is just not something a guy like Sawyer would normally say to anyone. But then again, different things and different situations do affect people signficantly at times. Like when you come out alive from a really horrible car accident. What do you do next? You call your wife, husband, family, friends, whoever, just to let them know how much you care about them and that you're OK. That is human nature. In this specific case, Sawyer has survived a plane crash, been stranded on this mysterious island and experienced things that even in his wild law-breaking days, he'd never imagined experiencing. That type of 'out of this world' experience brings out a lot of different feelings in any human being. This [love] scene is a prime example of that."

With months of shooting scenes almost exclusively with one another, Lilly and Holloway survived some of their most consistently emotional scenes side-by-side. "The pressure cooker is a good analogy because we have been in one," Lilly muses. "This show always mimics reality and reality always mimics this show. Josh and I have worked together a lot in the first two seasons, but not always. There may be a scene with Sawyer and Kate, and Jack will interrupt, or Kate will be defending Charlie from Sawyer, but we are usually interacting with the group as well. This was the first time where Josh and I walked in not knowing what the story or the dynamic would be. We were thrown into a situation where almost every single scene is just Josh and I. The scenes that involved other people were new people. These are new actors we are working with for the first time, so [at first] they are ultimately perfect strangers. Josh and I were the only familiar faces we got to see on set. There is an element of Kate and Sawyer that got thrust together because they were all each other had. In the same way, Josh and I have really had to trust one another and challenge one another because we are completely dependent on one another. I feel when we are doing scenes that that blends into the characters."

The first arc of the new season revealed more of Kate's troubled past in the episode I Do. It turns out Kate was in love and married before, but due to her past, she has to run away again from the life she wants to protect herself from. Lilly says it was an important facet of Kate to discover. "What I saw was that she had fallen in love [deeply] enough to marry a man, which for Kate is huge! The level and depth of her love for this guy must have gone really deep because she actually supplanted herself out of the situation and created a whole other version of herself to love him back. It was a huge sacrifice. What I thought it represented more than anything is the fact that she can never really love someone as simply herself - she has always had to replace or substitute who she really is for something else in order to find love."

That revelation into Kate's psyche set the stage for one of Kate's favorite moments of the season so far. "I really think a defining moment is when she climbs back into the cage. It said so much about Kate. There was so much in that: sex, love, hatred, vulnerability, and a complete closing-off. There were so many things that didn't make sense and yet made perfect sense that opposed one another, that I think it was an amazing representation of who she is and how torn she is inside. She can never seem to settle down with one of them [Sawyer or Jack]. Her actions often shock us because you can never know what to expect of her, or what side of her will rear its head, or what combination of those sides will create a really unpredictable action on her part."

But where does that leave Kate and Sawyer? Holloway laughs. "Are you kidding me? After all that time eating fish biscuits and being caged by the Others? I think he needs to relax, have some cocktails and socialize at the beach. But let's not forget we're on Lost. And we have some of the most adventurous, brilliant writers. Who knows what joy ride they'll take us on next?"

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