Yahoo! TV Q&A: 'True Blood' star Carrie Preston is returning to 'Person of Interest' and 'The Good Wife'
If you want to talk to actress and director Carrie Preston about her work, you'll have to be specific; not only is the "True Blood" star about to begin filming her sixth season as Merlotte's waitress Arlene Fowler, but she's also returning to "The Good Wife" as quirky fan-favorite attorney Elsbeth Tascioni early next year, and she just directed her first film, the New York City-set comedy "That's What She Said."
And this week, Preston returns to the CBS drama "Person of Interest," playing the love interest of her real-life husband, "Person" star Michael Emerson. Preston's Grace appeared in an episode earlier this month as the show began to unfold the story of Grace and Finch's courtship, and the very in-demand actress talked to Yahoo! TV about what's ahead for Grace and Finch, Elsbeth and Arlene, and, of course, Michael and Carrie.
How did the role on "Person of Interest" come about? When you guest-starred on "Lost" with your husband, that sparked from a suggestion you made about his Ben Linus character, right?
Yes. In that case, we were literally joking around. I said to Michael, "I know they're going to do your flashback at some point. Wouldn't it be hilarious if I played your mother?" Michael just jokingly mentioned it to the ("Lost") producers, and then the next thing I knew, I was in a jungle giving birth to him! (Laughing.) That came about very quickly, just out of some kind of light joke that I made.
For "Person of Interest," I had no idea that they were even considering doing something like that … the producers just presented it as an opportunity, and luckily I was available to do it, so that was really fun. Then, this season we got to play scenes together. That has been really fun for us, because obviously on "Lost," I couldn't play scenes with him, playing his mother. Just doing these flashbacks with him playing Mr. Finch has been really fun.
More flashbacks! Did you know when you first signed on last season that you would eventually be in flashback scenes with Finch?
I didn't. I didn't know, because last season they just had me in the one episode, where Reese finds out that Finch had this woman in his life, and she thinks that he is dead. So that was a big moment, a revelation about a very private man. I wasn't sure if they were going to continue to keep Finch very private or … if he was going to catch up with her in the present day somehow. So no, I had no idea that it was going to be these flashbacks, (revealing) how their relationship started.
In this week's episode, "'Til Death," we find out more about Grace's relationship with Finch. Is it going to be a heartbreaking episode? Is this the last time we'll see Grace?
No, there's still at least one more episode (after "'Til Death") that I haven't shot yet. And I think fans are going to be very interested in what happens in ["'Til Death"]. I wouldn't say it's heartbreaking. I would say it's more touching.
There are definitely some surprises in there, and then I think that the [next] episode that I'm going to do will be even more surprising. I would assume they haven't really told me what is happening there -- but I know that they're building up to something interesting.
Playing the romantic interest of a character played by your real-life husband might initially sound like a pretty easy gig, but is it more complicated than playing opposite a stranger?