Deborah Ann Woll Discusses Jessica With if Magazine – Part 2

September 15, 2009 by  

deborah ann wollif Magazine continued their two-part interview with Deborah Ann Woll, who plays the spunky teenage vampire, Jessica, on True Blood (you can read part 1 of the interview here).  Most fans who love Charlaine Harris’ book series, know that Jessica is a character that does not exist on the pages of her books. Jessica is the work of True Blood’s Executive Producer, Alan Ball, who created the adaptation of Harris’ novels for the HBO series. Deborah Ann Woll plays this original character beautifully each episode. iIf Magazine began the interview by asking Deborah what she had begun to realize about her character, and Woll had this to say:

” Hmm. There was one quite early on. Loneliness was one of the things that hit on me right away [about Jessica]. When I shot the first season, it had been clear to me that this was a very repressed young girl who was now freeing herself and trying to be an individual in a way she hadn’t been allowed to before. But then when they started writing the stuff with Hoyt, I started exploring this relationship with a boy and that love feeling, it occurred to me that this is the first time any man, or woman, or human being, had ever said something to her like, “You, by yourself, are great.” Or “I think your smile is beautiful.” These words are the first time I was ever being complimented in my life or anyone was accepting me and realizing actually what an incredibly lonely life that must be, so Jessica began for me as sort of this strike for freedom, then became this kind of desire and need for a companion, for love and a relationship, and now – I can’t reveal too much – it’s starting to pick up another little thing for me.”

Woll went on to discuss how she has really enjoyed working in television because she likes how fans get a chance to really watch a character evolve, which you don’t always see with a one time film or theater performance. She gave the example of how Jessica was first introduced to us as a bratty, aggressive girl, but then a few episodes later we learn more about her and realize why she probably acted out the way she did.

“I think about when Jessica was first introduced, she’s kind of this annoying child who speaks back to her maker, but then a couple episodes later, you find that her father was abusive to her, so yeah, maybe she might be a bit aggressive and angry with another father figure who was trying to be controlling. I think in a film, you might have only seen that bratty side and never looked deeper. TV sort of forces you to see that background, and I think people have really adjusted their opinions of Jessica, and I think that’s great, that we can use TV, we can use that medium to do that, to remind us that everybody has a story. I’ve been enjoying that aspect of working in television.”

Deborah was then asked if she had gotten used to having to stop and put in fangs while filming for the show. Woll commented that it took some getting used to, but that she has had to use them fairly often on the show and explained how because of her tight costumes there is not many places to carry the fangs on her so they normally keep them somewhere just outside the frame or someone holds them for her. if Magazine then spoke with Deborah about the scene where Jessica throws her abusive father against the wall. When asked how that feat was accomplished Woll explained they put her on a track using a moving platform strapping both her and the actor playing her father into the thing, and then a big strong guy grabbed the back and the camera was sitting on it with them. They rehearsed it a couple of times in slow motion, but then when it was time they went regular speed and they hit the wall.  It took a couple of tries to but they had to make a few more scores into the wall so it would break for the take.  It was essentially a one-take scene.

if Magazine also asked Woll if she had to work out physically to be able to do the scene and Deborah explained that it was her mentality that she had to change rather than her physique. Woll was then asked what her favorite True Blood scene was. Deborah’s answer:

“Well, I really love Episode Three [of Season Two], meeting Hoyt. For me, that was sort of the first episode where I was working on it and reading the script with this new idea about another struggle, another thing that Jessica was struggling with came to light, so it was very fresh for me, that episode, and I’m quite proud of what Jim and I and Stephen [Moyer as Bill] and Anna [Paquin as Sookie] all found within ourselves to add to that. I really love that episode.”

True Blood - Hoyt and Jessica

Woll went on to discuss some of her upcoming projects while True Blood is on break until season three. You will be able to see Deborah in the upcoming films “Little Murders”, “Highland Park”, and “Mother’s Day”. When asked if any of these roles were like her character Jessica, Woll had this to say:

“Oh, very different from Jessica. I don’t think anybody will ever write a character like Jessica again [laughs]. I’m really safe from repeating that one. Part of the reason I like all three of these pieces so much is that they are very different characters. One is a mother, another is a sexy chain-smoking waitress and the third is a very interesting part, kind of a repressed young girl, but in a very different way than Jessica was. I’m very much looking forward to all of them. I’m happy to have these projects this summer to work on and keep my acting chops warm and fresh.”

if Magazine ended the interview by asking Deborah about her Comic-con experience and Woll explained:

“Out of this world. I have never experienced anything like that before. I went because I had time with my boyfriend. We’re big nerdy genre fans ourselves, so we went to panels every day, we did autograph signings, I waited in line like every other fan girl for my autographs [laughs], so I actually spent more of my time being a fan girl than actually being [approached by] fan girls. But then our actual [TRUE BLOOD panel] was unbelievable. I’ve never seen that kind of [reaction] – people like the show and I’m so honored that they’re willing to tell us about that.”

Well Deborah we are honored that you work so hard to bring Jessica to the screen for us to enjoy each time True Blood comes on. We look forward to seeing more of Jessica in Season 3!! I just hope I can wait that long!

SOURCE: if Magazine

Photo credits: HBO Inc.