"Katee Sackhoff is possibly the easiest person I've ever worked with." We're just a few short weeks away from the long awaited debut of the Battlestar Galactica feature-length television movie Razor, which focuses on events aboard the Battlestar Pegasus during both the initial Cylon attack and Lee Adama's ascension to command. Finally, after months of waiting, we'll get to see the latest adventures of Major Kendra Shaw.
We know what you're thinking: who the heck is Kendra Shaw? No worries, mate, we've got all the info you'll need to be brought up to speed. Shaw, in case you haven't read the promo material, is the Executive Officer of the Pegasus and the focal point of Razor. She's played by Aussie actress Stephanie Jacobesen, who was kind enough to spend some time with us chatting about life as a member of the Battlestar Galactica crew, her interactions with big boss Admiral Cain and what it's like working with Katee Sackhoff.
Stephanie Jacobsen on the merits of her character, Kendra Shaw:
Fundamentally, I would just say her complexity. I mean, what she was for me was I guess just almost sterile. And I think as an actor, when parts of your journey are always actor things... revealing human emotion - to sort of go against all of those instincts, pull them right back and cover them up was an enormous challenge for me and it was actually very, very fulfilling.
Stephanie Jacobsen on joining an established ensemble cast as a new character:
I have to say that I didn't feel like an outsider stepping in at all. Everyone was just wonderful. So I didn't have that to draw from. I mean, everyone was helpful, accommodating, welcoming, very open, very generous with me in every (which) way. So I didn't have that sort of solitary experience working on Battlestar as my character did.
But it was I guess coming in as someone who was completely new to the environment and new to everyone who was already established there was akin to the character. So I guess that there was that correlation.
I think that the introduction of Kendra was - it was really I guess an act of boldness and an act of ingenuity, because obviously to kind of throw someone into the mix who's never even been alluded to, let alone seen, you know, so many years into an established series is a very, very courageous thing to do.
But what I think it did was enabled this entirely new untainted alternative perspective of situations, people and events that were - that had already been told of. So I think that in a sense that sort of risk and that sort of oddness to it...
Stephanie Jacobsen on the experience of working closely with Michelle Forbes:
She's almost like a force of nature in a way. She's really - if she was just - just her focus and her intensity I have to say that working with her was one of the - she made this one of the easiest jobs I've ever done in a sense.
Because responding to what she provides on set as a fellow actor is absolutely effortless. It's like she does almost everything. You just have to listen to her and watch her. Yes, she's incredible. I recommended working with her to anyone.
Stephanie Jacobsen on playing dark scenes:
I think that you just approach them without comment. I mean, I think that it's more just about doing what is done in the scene and then maybe reflecting on or analyzing it later.
That's what I do anyways because otherwise I guess you do sort of risk falling into that trap of fretting over how people are going to perceive you vicariously through your character or what your character is doing. So I think that you just have to add - as an actor you just have to commit to whatever it is and get it done and then sort of worry about it afterwards.
And I mean I think that - you know, I don't - I think that all of - I think that every scene that kind of happens in Razor amounts to a very clear and I guess quiet a profound philosophy in a sense. So, you know, I don't have any qualms about it.
I had some problems after flying for 21 hours and rolling off a plane onto a set and then standing for 14 hours in those military boots. I had some problems with my joints but apart from that I was fine.
Stephanie Jacobsen on her character's relationship with Cain and Starbuck:
Okay, now for me and this was just - this was just my take and this was just something that I induced Kendra with. Cain replaced her mother.
So, yes that was that - I think that her - see - okay, her relationships with Cain and Kara from my perspective were very similar in the sense that she didn't necessarily like either of them but she respected them both for some similar and some different reasons.
And I think that given Kendra's nature or her lack of one maybe, I think that in her world or in her being respect was the closest thing to affection that she was capable of.
Katee Sackhoff is incredible. I think - I mean she - I'm - it's going sound - okay, I said similar things about Michelle Forbes but they're not similar at all, they're completely different. Completely different actresses to work with but Katee Sackhoff is possibly the easiest person I've ever worked with. She's completely no maintenance, complete undermining, nothing's a problem. I think I threw like a needle in her eye in one scene and she didn't even blink. Yes, she's fantastic. She's great.