INTERVIEW: Actress Jordana Lajoie (The Boys)

Jordana Lajoie

With a love for music – was acting your first main choice or were you rather drawn into this world?

Performing was always something I wanted to do, I just don’t know at what point in my life I first fell in love with the idea of acting. jordana lajoie

I do remember watching Lauren Hill’s performance in Sister Act II when I was younger and being profoundly moved by it. If you’ve never seen the movie, the takeaway is that Lauren integrated her love for both singing and acting in that role; and that spoke to me.

I only got into acting much later in life, whereas singing and playing the piano was something my mother instilled in me when I was much younger. So it’s hard for me to say which I fell in love with first because the latter was something that didn’t come to me organically, and the former came much later in my life because I sought it.

Having found success on the French circuit of Quebec – what was the transition from here to the American realm?

I’m just grateful Americans are open to the idea of having a French Canadian who speaks like Jean Claude Van Damme on their sets.  I jest.

Americans work differently than we do for sure; different energy, different challenges… they’re pretty damn fun.

Quebec cinematographers don’t always have the same monetary backing Americans are fortunate to have, which means we very often have to push boundaries; use our imagination to make something spectacular at a lower cost, and when that actually happens, you realize that you can do a lot with very little.  We definitely work at a quicker pace, and that requires an amazing crew and actors who can follow your lead whilst you cut corners here and there because you know… budget.jordana lajoie

Whereas our dear friends from the south have a bit more breathing room, not always, but much more than our sets back home, which can be liberating at times.

Let’s talk about The Boys – what was the audition process like?

I taped the audition and remember seeing the names involved and thought “I have no idea what this is about but I’m curious to see what they’re going to do with it”.

I just brought what I believed was good for the character and thought: if they like it, they like it, and if they don’t, they don’t.

Nowhere in my mind did I think I was going to book this role because they were auditioning everyone for it, and I didn’t know what the hell I was getting into once I did book it. Safe to say, a beautiful surprise.

Working on a streaming show was any different or rather familiar?

I’ve worked on projects for streaming platforms before; it doesn’t really change much as far as what I am required to do on set so I don’t really think about it much. As an audience member, I obviously prefer that everything is dropped all at once just because I love to binge-watch good shows, and The Boys, no bias, is a good show.

The show is bonkers all the way through – was it easy for you to jump into this world?

I loved every single second of it. The amount of energy and love dedicated towards this project shows… from the writers to the crew to the actors, to everyone. The sets were amazing, production value was just wild; it definitely elevated our game.

How did you get to transport yourself into this universe as an actress?

For me, it’s just the work that you put in, from creating the look to the backstory, to everything. It’s that process that helps you transport yourself. When you’ve done all that work and they finally bring you to set, everything else just falls into place.

As much as you start this process alone though, you definitely don’t end it alone. It’s teamwork, and this team is stellar.

I understand the role of Cherie was new for the series – did that make the preparation process much easier or rather the opposite? 

I know how people can get intense about their comic book storylines and characters; being a comic book fan myself I understand the attachment people can have for some characters and where the desire to keep things the same comes from. However books and TV are such different mediums; when you write a book, (now imagine a series of books with spectacular gory illustrations), you have more leisure to go on and on about things, you don’t have that with TV.

When I found out Cherie didn’t actually exist, though she was inspired by Marie who was Frenchie’s girlfriend, a few thoughts definitely crossed my mind.

For a moment I was reminded of when Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings first came out and Arwen was out there saving Frodo from the Nazguls, and all those little purists online were going nuts over the fact that Glorfindel wasn’t the one saving Frodo’s butt, not understanding PJ’s desire to include more women in his movies, and when that thought popped into my brain for a split second, I remember thinking ” well damn, I better not be hated for not even being in the books”.

Once that moment passed, however, I went back to thinking “you know what? I’m still gonna blow some sh*t up and there’s nothing anyone’s going to do about it”.  Besides, I’m not in the first season-long enough for you to be irritated by my presence.

I was more worried about what the comic book writers were going to think but when Darick Robertson, co-creator and illustrator of the comics, tweeted that he loved Cherie more than he did Marie, and posted a picture of my face on his TV screen I thought that was fucking awesome.

Did you still get to research and read some of the comics?

I just couldn’t help myself; I have a few friends who own the comics, and they were freaking out when I told them I never read them. One, in particular, owns both the Preacher and The Boys series, so I was at his place going over them, and safe to say my mind was blown away. I had to stop myself because I knew Eric and his team of writers were going to do something very different with the storyline; I didn’t want to have any preconceived ideas. Though I did read the last one in its entirety because I needed to know what was going to happen ultimately…

It definitely helped me understand Frenchie’s character a little more and the dynamic with the rest of The Boys; kind of crucial if I’m going to be helping them out.

If you like comic books, and you don’t mind gory stuff, get on it.

Cherie is known for her badass persona – was it easier for you to embody her persona? 

I would love to say “I wake up looking like a strange raccoon-eyed baddie all day every day” but that’s just not the case. And I’ve never been around this many explosives in my life either.jordana lajoie

Having said that I do believe that when it comes to casting a role there needs to be a bit of that energy somewhere in there already.jordana lajoie

I think that is what makes it ultimately easier when the performer is ready to embody a specific character; tapping into that already pre-existing energy. You just have to find it is all.

With everything that happens at the end of the season and all the consequences that will come with it – will we find Cherie still running from the 7 or will she eventually join The Boys?

A fan of the show posted a message saying he was convinced Cherie’s coming back as an undercover Supe. I don’t know what gives him that impression but I “re-tweeted” that theory because that’s kinda wild.jordana lajoie

I definitely won’t ruin anything for you, but we are filming season two right now and I’ll just leave it at anything is possible.

What else is happening next in Jordana Lajoie’s world?

Honestly, right now I’m just trying to figure out where I want to move next. I love to travel and meet new people and I’m just looking for my next adventure.  I lead a very gypsy life…very much like Cherie.jordana lajoie

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