Sonya Walger is making waves as Olivia Benford on FlashForward, but you're probably wondering where else you've seen her. Try Lost, where she played Penny, or even CSI or Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. We chatted with the British actress about her FlashForward present—and her Lost future.
TV.com: What made you take this role on FlashForward?
Sonya Walger: The script. The script was so superb. [And] a great combination of these very rich and complicated characters who are dealing with this extraordinary situation.
What's it like to develop a fantasy experience on-screen without having a real-life experience to draw from?
You find the parallel of what does chime for you. The idea of finding myself without my husband, but with someone quite different is ... chilling to me, whether it's supernatural or scientific or a daydream, whatever that is. It still can be pretty arresting.
Which character do you think has the most interesting flashforward?
I think Olivia! But I also think, just from the outside, Janis's (Christine Woods) flashforward [in which she is pregnant and having an ultrasound] is kind of compelling. I just think, as a woman who's never ever considered herself to be a mother or have any maternal instincts whatsoever, even in a relationship with a man or a woman, to see yourself pregnant and so profoundly moved by that, is really fascinating to me.
Olivia and her husband are very sarcastic toward one another. How would you describe their relationship?
I think all couples speak in code to each other to a lesser or greater extent. I think they love each other dearly, and have a very, very strong bond. They've been through an enormous amount. I mean, he's seven years sober, but there [were] a lot of years of drinking prior to that. So they're both ... working extremely hard. I think part of their code with each other is that they don't say directly, "I love you." They [say], "I hate you, I don't want to see you again." But it's really the only way of being self-protective.
Olivia's daughter Charlie seems to know more than anyone. Is there a reason why she acts the way she does?
Not really. Not more than you've seen. Charlie's a little girl who's had what she considers a very bad dream. You'll have to wait for her flashforward to be revealed.
Are you returning to Lost for the final season?
I don't know. We'll have to wait and see. I hope so! I would like to think that they wouldn't wrap up the whole series without letting Penny have her final moments.
FlashForward and Lost are often compared to one another. Do you think it's a fair comparison?
I think it's an inevitable comparison. You have a show that has one huge cataclysmic event and a large cast all dealing with the repercussions of that event. ... As the show progresses, the comparisons will trail off and FlashForward will stand alone. It's really not like Lost. It's really not.
FlashForward airs Thursdays at 8pm on ABC.