True Blood’s Kristin Bauer is interviewed by SFX.CO.UK about True Blood Season 3. In the role of Pam, chief of staff to vampire chief Eric (played by Alexander Skarsgard) Kristin has become a favorite with the fans and now has been made a regular on the show. Now, SFX Magazine has interviewed Kristin about her role as Pam and a portion of that interview is below.
The youngest of three children Bauer was indeed born and raised in Racine County, Wisconsin, and as a teenager rebelled against the Ivy League path that her siblings had chosen.
She choose to study art – first in New York and later in Boston – and after a string of fill-in jobs (waitress, washing windows, working as a nanny) she headed to California mostly, she says, because the climate was temperate and the natural beauty inspiring, especially if you want to paint. But she still had to pay the rent.
After a brief stint as a model and then a make-up artist, she was asked to appear in a movie (it was never released) and found her calling. But Bauer was hooked. She enrolled in an acting class, got herself an agent and was working as an actress almost before she realised what, exactly, was happening.
She landed roles in TV shows, including Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Seinfeld and Everybody Loves Raymond. There have been movies too, including Dancing at the Blue Iguana.
What’s it like on the True Blood set? Are some of the things that are scary – and very bloody – to watch, actually quite funny to film?
Kristin Bauer: Oh, shooting on stage is hysterical. It’s not bloody and scary and gross because when you are there, filming it, it just isn’t like that. A good example came during the first season when Sookie was soaked with like a fire hose of blood for what seemed like minutes. And it was pretty intense on screen – an amazing sequence. And Anna (Paquin) was great. And it wasn’t easy because the director was saying to her “make sure that for the first shot of blood your eyes are open.” And she was like, “Oh my God, okay…”
And what they did is they ran a garden hose up the side of the actor’s face but the camera can’t see it. From the camera side all you can see is the guy vomiting blood. But when you’re actually there, if you look three feet to the right you see an orange construction ladder with a big sweaty guy on top, with a flannel shirt and construction boots, pouring gallons of blood into this thing and pumping it (laughs). So you look one way and it’s creepy and scary and you look the other way and it’s hysterically funny.
And that’s how everything is – I’m immortal and powerful with my cool fangs but I’m in a graveyard scene and my heels keep sinking and I’m waving at the director as I slowly sink into the earth and also, with those fangs in, I’m lisping! It really is a lot of fun. And you know there is a third actor in every scene – these special effects guys and they do an incredible job. You can’t see them on screen but believe me, they are a big part of it.
Art is clearly a big part of your life. How did you end up as an actor?
Actually, I thought art would be my career for a while. You try and remember in hindsight how your life ended up where it is and, it’s not necessarily accurate, but I remember my family was very big into Ivy League schools. I’m the youngest of three children. There was Stanford and Harvard and masters degrees and then I came along and I had no idea what I wanted to do. But I did know what I didn’t want to do – and I did not want to do Maths, Science and History. So that sort of left my art class.
How old were you when you figured that out?
I remember by 15 I was starting to sort of torture my parents with dying my hair purple and starting to rebel, and going, “I want something different.” And my sister had gone to Fine Arts school and she ended up being an architect, which was always what she wanted to do. My brother always knew what he wanted to do and he did political science and he became a politician and then, when he lost a race for Congress, he took over my father’s business. My father ran a distribution business in Wisconsin for all these different products.
Read the rest of this interview by going to sfx.co.uk