Fan Fest EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About… ‘Wentworth’ Star Libby Tanner
The Internet is ablaze for Wentworth, a high-stakes, gritty drama, featuring captivating characters and absolutely brilliant actors. The Australian TV series, which thank baby Jesus, is available on Netflix worldwide, is one of my personal favorites and I think you’ll enjoy it too. I devoured it in several sittings and have no shame coercing friends and family into the wonderfully teal world of these lovable, and often infuriating inmates.
Most fans of the show have come to know Libby Tanner as Bridget Westfall on Foxtel’s Wentworth, her character, who is a therapist in the prison was introduced in the third season and let me tell you, packs style (legit, has the best boots and jackets of any character currently on TV), poise, and brings a little extra sexual tension to this unconventional setting between her and a misunderstood inmate. Commonly referred to as “Fridget,” the on-screen pairing of Bridget and Franky (played by Nicole da Silva) is a fan favorite among rabid viewers. Tanner, who is one of Australia’s most popular actors, is undoubtedly gaining serious clout with the American audience, and is an absolute pleasure to not only watch on my TV screen, but to chat with as well.
The cast of Wentworth has not only left a lasting impression on this girl *points to self*, but people worldwide. The dark drama explores life behind bars and dances circles (in the drama category) around its American competitor Orange is the New Black. Tanner was kind enough to give me a few precious moments of her downtime to talk with me about wrapping up Season 4 of the show, and what she’s been up to during this grueling (for the fans, anyways) hiatus.
MCKENZIE MORRELL: What has the woman behind Bridget Westfall been doing since Season 4 wrapped… I know y’all are working on Season 5 right now, and we can’t get much into those details– but perhaps you can tease any other happenings going on in your life?
LIBBY TANNER: After Season 4, I was busy with a theatre production, Mike Leigh’s “Abigail’s Party”. This play is a favorite of mine. Playing the character of Beverly always takes me on a debaucherous ride back into the 70’s where the other cast and audience alike get to holler and squeal at life’s absurdities still so relevant today! I would love to take this show abroad – casting in the UK with a local season there would be a dream come true. After the show I traveled to New York to finally meet the fabulous girls of “Lady Parts.” Liron and Mimi took me on a grand tour of Times Square and treated me to a performance of “The Color Purple” followed by the best pizza in town! A mad dash to LA, then home again to cuddle the kids. During the Winter activities include: log fires, long walks with my ridgeback Barry along the waterfront, pottering in the garden and house renovations!
MM: Sounds like a robust schedule! So, I’m just going to get to the gist of it– between Allie, Maxine, and Kaz on the show, who would you Marry/Screw/Kill? [laughs]
LT: [Laughs] Golly, what a question… okay, if Bridget married Kaz and consummated the union it would probably result in death!
MM: Totally true! [Laughs] If ever given a chance would you go on a show like Survivor, how long do you think you’d last?
LT: Survivor- YES. I absolutely love the outdoors and swagging it under the stars, although I do like a few creature comforts too, and peace and quiet.
MM: Don’t we all. Name two characters on Wentworth you’d like to see get together… (think unlikely pairs) either romantically involved or conspiring together?
LT: Bridget and Vera conspiring together would be very cool, in and out of the prison! Kate Atkinson is whip smart and hilarious to work with… a little bit of “Vidget” could open up a whole new world of possibilities.
MM: Oooh, I like the way you think! Random, do you sing in the shower? If so, what’s your go-to jam?
LT: Singing in the shower with my 4-year-old is the best distraction from the ol’ hair washing process… bubbles ebb and flow to likes of Doc McStuffins, Elsa – yes still lashings of Frozen, rounding it off with the one and only Barbie – tune from Life in the Dream House! [Laughs]
MM: [Laughs] That’s quite the list! What do you think is the best show out right now (other than Wentworth of course).
LT: Bloodline Season 1 and 2, Mendelsohn, and The Killing. Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman are superb.
MM: I’ve gotta ask, when are you coming back to the states? I missed you in NYC last time! Any plans for projects or events here?
LT: No plans but options are open, will definitely have all the kids too, too exciting not to share it… DISNEYLAND!
5 Things You Didn’t Know About…
I swear this woman is my spirit animal, and much like my own lifestyle preferences, Libby avoids the gym like the plague. I mean, who wants to be on display when you’re sweating your hopes and dreams out (or in my case, those sweets I snuck after lunch).
Another fact that this gorgeous lady and I have in common is that she loves nights in. I mean, can you blame her? You really can’t beat staying at home with a chilled beverage after a long day playing opposite Nicole da Silva, or ya know, choosing to rock out in the shower to the Frozen soundtrack. Same, Libby, same!
She’s always gardening. Now, I don’t have a green thumb, at all– but I know who I’m turning to if I ever decide I want to plant some delicious and nutritious goodies in my backyard.
This one is a two-for-one special! She’s a fan of concrete etching and antique auctions. Now, I’ll be perfectly blunt, when the handy sheila mentioned “concrete etching” to me– I was like, what the what? But, after a thorough search (thank you, Google), I was like ‘hot damn, that’s cool!’ And who can really pass up a good antique auction? That would totally be the perfect pairing with a show like HGTV’s Flea Market Flip.
Libby’s long term goal is to do more theatre. She says “the idea of playing Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? alongside a fabulous ‘George’ is a must” on her bucket list!
Follow Libby Tanner on Twitter: @LibbyTanner.