You might know her as Jess from Til Lease Do Us Part Season two or as Suzanna-Maria from The Autobiography of Jane Eyre, but Angie Lopez most recently starred as Ariana in Cherrydale's All For One series. She recently sat down for a chat with us to discuss all things Ariana, her previous web series work and more. Check out what she has to say below!
netTVnow: How did you get involved with the series and what attracted you to Ariana?
Angie Lopez: It’s funny because Ariana kind of fell in my lap, more so than anything. I saw the posting for the show and saw that it was a show for a female Three Musketeers and I was stoked. I auditioned for Dorothy and Alex and then they asked me to come in for Ariana. She’s wicked, she’s awesome and has a mischievous side that I think I also have so it made so much sense when I saw it. Then I met Claire (Gagnon-King) and it made more sense, everyone who was cast their roles just made perfect sense. So Ariana just sort of happened and it wasn’t me pursuing her, it just happened to me!
netTVnow: You mentioned Ariana’s mischievous side but she turned pretty dark, what was it like playing that kind of role?
AL: Ariana with Portia is a different person than Ariana is by herself, but all of who Ariana is with or without Portia happens before we even start filming. So I knew she was already of capable of doing all these things given the right motivation. Everything that Ariana does on the show or ends up doing is something Ariana’s always been capable of. Portia really does ground Ariana in a very light way, she keeps her from getting ahead of herself but because it’s all in her, it wasn’t hard to tap into that dark side.
netTVnow: Claire mentioned that prior to filming you guys created a whole backstory to the relationship to understand why Portia and Ariana would be together. What was the process for you guys going into that and taking that on?
AL: Establishing how long Ariana had known Portia was really important because that amount of time gave me the idea that okay this is why Ariana says, “You can’t hold me back.” We needed to know how far this relationship went.
However, creating backstories with other actors is always tricky because you might have a different interpretation than the other person but Claire, and actually all the girls are wonderful and we spitballed a bunch of stuff.
netTVnow: What’s one thing about Ariana that you want audiences to know that they weren’t able to see on screen?
AL: I think a lot of Ariana’s aggressiveness and anger or snarkiness, comes from a place of - I don’t want to say insecurity but Ariana has a soft side that a lot of people don’t realize she has. We talked about the backstory but with Claire it was really easy to get into a physical rhythm in that we’d be doing a scene where they’d be fighting and Ariana would immediately start rubbing her back. That sort of felt so true to the relationship where Portia does get overwhelmed and Ariana’s there to help calm her down and I don’t think viewers get to see a lot of that.
netTVnow: What was the hardest episode for you to shoot?
AL: Emotionally, as far as feelings for the character, would have to be episode 17, the breakup episode. Everybody on set had been so tense about it and it would look at me and Claire and go, “I’m so sorry,” [laughs] while we’re trying to run lines. For me, as an actor with insecurities of my own, the episode where we were talking using our hands through the other actors, that was so hard [laughs]. I had a mic on my chest so I couldn’t lean into Claire and I had to speak clearly but I couldn’t see the camera and then I had this huge monologue that I had to say in a vocal range that’s higher than my own [laughs].
netTVnow: How was the live episode for you?
AL: It was phenomenal. I have my background in theater and so I haven’t done that in about three years now and that episode reminded me of how much I love live performances. It’s like this energy that consumes you while you’re in a scene, knowing that an audience is watching you.
netTVnow: That’s amazing. I’ve heard such amazing things about the live episode from others involved with the series and it’s so great to see things like a live episode being done since it hasn’t been attempted or done before.
AL: When I worked on web series it was a time when just Lizzie Bennett Diaries was a big deal and it was a form that didn’t have many rules, it hadn’t been thought out properly yet. So having that live episode come together made me feel like, if this is the way independent work is going to be going then you it’s going to be great.
netTVnow: Would you have wanted Portia and Ariana to end up together?
AL: I still do [laughs]. I do! I feel so much love between them that the romantic in me is like, “it’s not fair that they’re not together.” I love them together, I think they have their issues but they’re good for each other. They’re actually good for each other, or maybe that’s just my biased opinion [laughs].
netTVnow: We don’t see a lot of the bigger things happen on-screen so as an audience we assume it’s off screen and we’re just seeing the aftermath, what was it like for you to bring that on screen?
AL: The thing was too, we almost had to fill in some gaps because the middle episode, the live episode, wasn’t in yet. So I knew the breakup happened and the next couple scenes shot were post-breakup, post-live episode and it basically was saying this is who Ariana is now. I think the harder part was keeping track of the hi jinx that the characters got into [laughing], keeping track of how many times we broke into the office and all that.
netTVnow: Any upcoming projects or anything you’d like to add?
AL: Nothing at the moment but keep an eye out on Twitter if anything comes up! And always thank you to the fans. Thank you to the people that make doing this so much fun and the fans who continue to send us letters and gifts. They make living my dream a lot more fun.