Heroes. Miss Olivieri plays the mysterious Lydia, who has some sort of empathic power where she can see and give information about the people appearing on her tattoed skin with the ink provided by Samuel. The character was even featured in the Web Exclusive Sprint series Slowburn.
Miss Olivieri is no stranger to Sci-Fi, having appeared in a guest role on the last season of another famous franchise: Stargate Atlantis, as a thief by the name of Neeva, as well as on Knight Rider. On Heroes, she brings much poise and luminosity to the show and it is always a pleasure to see her.
As the mysterious Lydia, you are one of the newest cast members in the Heroes family. How do you feel about coming into such a big ensemble show?
If i had really stopped to think about it too much it would have probably been more overwhelming then it was. I was lucky because i joined the show at the very beginning of the new season and ushered in a much needed, well received chapter in Heroes history.
We do not know yet whether Lydia is a good or bad character since most of Samuel’s and the Carnival’s history and motivations are still hidden from the viewers (as of episode 5). Have the writers given you any hindsight into who she is and where she comes from in order to play her?
When i was brought on as Lydia, I had a brief meeting with some of the writers regarding her but not much character direction was given. They expressed their intention of "letting me discover her" so creating Lydia was a collaborative effort. In the original breakdown, it described a "gullible" tattoo girl...this i chose to ignore, No one with all of her insight and knowledge would be "gullible" at least not REALLY;)
We have learned that Lydia’s a mother from the webisodes and that only Edgar seems to know her secret. Do you think she has more surprises down her sleeves?
Sleeves?? lol Lydia rarely sports sleeves, tattoo sleeves maybe. and if she did have them they would be full! Lydia's powers seem almost mystical in nature; she seems to see the future and makes predictions through the ink used by Samuel on her skin.
Will we get to learn more about her powers this season?
Her powers will become more defined in the episodes coming in the new year.
What was your first reaction upon learning what your character could do?
well, like many of the fans, there was so much that was unanswered. I had so many questions that i had to fill in the blanks myself. As an actor, its part of the job:)
What kind of powers would you, yourself, like to have?
hmm...to heal others
How did you prepare for the role? Did casting tell you that you would be covered with that many tattoos?
they did ask us all at the audition if we were claustrophobic in any way haha. And yes we did know it would involve tattoos. I loved the thought of it all though.
The show is hinting at a romance between your character and bad boy serial killer Sylar. Romances on Heroes have never been successful. If that is the case, how do you think this could bode for Lydia?
I cant say much about this because there will be more to come involving this storyline in the new year. Lydia is a different kind of girl;)
Heroes is not your first foray into Sci-Fi television. You’ve had quite a prominent guest part on a season 5 Stargate Atlantis episode called ''Identity'' where you played Neeva, a thief who switches bodies with Dr. Keller. Is science-fiction a genre that ever appealed to you?
I LOVE sci fi!! I would be happy if that was the only genre I ever worked in again!! It is by far my favorite subject to read, to watch, to act....
Miss Olivieri, can you talk to us about your upcoming projects?
Well, I have two films coming out that i shot actually BEFORE Heroes one called Dozers and another called Drop Dead Gorgeous. Both are fun sci-fi films in which I play a lead role.
One last question: When you are not working on Heroes, what are your guilty pleasures on television?
Due to my profession, I try to watch a little of everything. This can be exhausting and unfortunate because even the shows i love to watch do not get their fair share of watching. I also tend to favor shows i would love to be a part of such as: True Blood, Dollhouse, Dexter, Californication, Fringe, Heroes, the Discovery show (i do not need to be on this one lol) unless i was doing a travel show which i would not be opposed to! Old westerns are fun. You know every piece of cinematic art i have not had the pleasure of watching i try to see and that is a lot. It is my classroom after all.
I want to thank Miss Olivieri for having taken the time to share with us Heroes and Sci-Fi fans alike. I am looking forward to seeing more of this lovely actress, and her character Lydia, in the coming months.