Dichen Lachman is a veteran of community sci-fi exhibits with cult followings — however Netflix’s new present “Altered Carbon” is her first foray into big-budget streaming tv.
Lachman, who’s appeared on Joss Whedon’s “Dollhouse,” ABC’s “Brokers of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” Syfy’s “Being Human” and The CW’s “The 100,” credit her bodily look for being forged a number of instances within the style. “I believe that as a result of I’ve such a distinct look, I don’t actually match into one class,” she says. “So this [sci-fi] style is a superb place for somebody like me to inhabit. I’m half Asian, half Australian — and I believe the long run is a number of mixed-race folks.
“Altered Carbon,” which reportedly price $6-7 million per episode, relies on Richard Okay. Morgan’s 2002 novel and helmed by showrunner Laeta Kalogridis (“Avatar”). It’s set in a futuristic noir world much like “Blade Runner” — however as an alternative of replicants, human consciousness may be downloaded into totally different our bodies, enabling the rich to primarily dwell eternally. Joel Kinnaman (“The Killing,” “Home of Playing cards”) stars as Takeshi Kovacs, an elite soldier positioned in an unfamiliar physique and tasked with fixing a homicide. Lachman performs his sister, Reileen.
Whereas sci-fi was acquainted terrain for her, Lachman says Netflix was a completely totally different panorama by way of tv. “Community TV and Netflix, in my expertise, have been so totally different by way of scale,” she says. “I used to be fortunate I bought to trip horses [in ‘The 100’], however typically you’re restricted in how a lot you are able to do. With ‘Altered Carbon,’ they needed us to do every part. I skilled for 3 months studying the right way to use a sword and choreography [for fight scenes]. It was scary and thrilling on the similar time; I had by no means skilled so laborious for a job bodily.
“We have been making an attempt to attain one thing that basically hasn’t been accomplished on tv earlier than — not at this stage.”
“Altered Carbon” co-stars Joel KinnamanNetflixAnd coaching wasn’t the one problem. “For all my large scenes with Joel [Kinnaman], I used to be extremely sick,” she says. “Reileen is likely one of the strongest folks within the universe and I didn’t really feel that manner in any respect; I felt like curling up in mattress and sleeping for per week.”
Reileen’s energy locations her in good firm with Lachman’s earlier roles (a vampire royal in “Being Human,” a superhuman cult chief in “Brokers of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” a warlord-esque character in “The 100”).
“I don’t know why that retains taking place, as a result of I really feel like I’m such an ungainly, dorky individual,” she says, laughing. “Individuals joke that I’ve ‘Resting Bitch Face’ — [that] if I’m not smiling, I look fierce. However regardless of how darkish my characters get, I would like folks to have empathy for them. I’ve had the chance to play girls who’ve a number of intention and are very clear about what they need.”
For all of the sword-wielding motion Lachman does onscreen, nonetheless, her coronary heart lies in a shocking style. “I really like interval dramas; I really feel like Maggie Smith is my alter ego,” she says. “Due to the way in which I look, I don’t typically get to do interval items within the ’20s or the ’30s or additional again, as a result of these tales usually are not being advised.