Caity Lotz Dishes On Arrow And Playing The Canary

Faith D’Isa ’17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.
Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.

The CW series Arrow has become a hit, introducing fans old and new to a less mainstream branch of comic-book hero on the tail of the recent trend in the film industry. A leader in what will now become a number of superhero-focused television programs, Arrow is now in its second season. And with that second season comes a plethora of new faces. Among those is kick-ass newcomer Caity Lotz as The Canary, often seen beside Stephen Amell‘s Green Arrow.

Emertainment Monthly got to chat with Lotz on her new recurring role and what it’s like to be a superhero.

So, first thing’s first, on Arrow you play The Canary—how was that audition process? Did you know what you were auditioning for? How much information were you given on the character beforehand?

I did not know. I originally auditioned for a character named Lisa, and it didn’t really say much other than that. And I didn’t find out until I met with the producers after they’d casted it.  They made a big deal about the casting—like, they were acting like it was a big role, so I thought it might be a good character in there. So I looked online, at like some of the blogs and stuff, so I had a little hint that, like, you know, it was going to be a superhero. At least, that’s what I was hoping for.

Everyone wants to be a superhero.


So, what brought you to this role?

That was my agent, they sent me the script for the audition and it sounded cool. Even from the sides, you could tell it was a strong character, so I liked it.

So you had no idea besides your research what an integral role she’d have in this story.

Yeah—no, I mean, I still kind of have no idea. [laughs] The writing just keeps unfolding, so it’s a surprise.

So, how was it being the new kid on set this season?

Oh, it was so awesome. The cast and the crew, they’re friendly. Everybody’s been so nice and so welcoming. Because sometimes it can be maybe a little hard coming on the show, it’s like coming into someone else’s house. But here, everybody’s so welcoming and so cool. And I think it’s nice, because my character’s so tied in to all the other characters, so that probably makes it a little bit easier to get to know everybody.

So, how did you prepare for the character? Have you looked into the Green Arrow and Black Canary comics for inspiration at all?

I looked at some of Black Canary comics just for fun, to see. They were pretty cool. But character-wise, you know, for me, I wasn’t trying to go off of something. I took what I knew about the writing and the character and put myself into it.

Stephen Amell and Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.
Stephen Amell and Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.

So there’s a lot of you in her.

In every character I play, there’s a lot of me. Everything is some side of you or an amplified side of you.

And The Canary herself is a really intense person physically—how did you get yourself ready for all that?

[Laughs] Well, I’m a pretty intense person physically, too, so that made that easier. I was a dancer. I started dancing when I was seven and I’ve pretty much been dancing all my life, so I was doing stunts and things, really physical. It’s just, you know, working out, [do] yoga; that kind of stuff.

I’ve seen videos of you dancing and doing parkour—that’s incredible!

Oh, thank you!

So now that we know a bit more about her backstory as Sara and we’ve seen her in that light—how do you try to differentiate the two characters?

Stephen Amell who plays Arrow, he has to do the same thing, too. Her arc is one with these different people, kinda like Arrow has to play. And I mean, I think putting on a little bit of voice helps me feel younger, and there’s also a light-heartedness to Sara. So, you know, whenever I’m making choices on how she reacts to things, how she’d do things, younger Sara, she’s more optimistic, more open, and I think when you get to present-day Sara, she’s a lot more tough, a lot more “no bullshit”. And I’m not sure which one’s better, you know, for her as a person. A lot of her arc is about going back to who she used to be.

What do you think about her ties to the League of Assassins and Ra’s Al Ghul—what do you think this’ll mean for her life as “just Sara”? Like how she used to be that plain, light-hearted person—how was that transformation?

Well, I think it’s part of everything she went through with the League of Assassins,[and] even before that, taking crap [and] doing what she had to do to survive.  And that definitely takes its toll on who she is now. When she came back, I think it was hard for her to adjust to a different type of lifestyle.

Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.
Caity Lotz in Arrow. Photo Credit: Jack Rowand.

But it’s evident that both of them are strong female role models, which is fantastic.

Yeah, I think that she’s pretty cool, she’s strong, and that’s a cool part about her.

So just for fun—what’s your dream television role? Is there anyone you’ve particularly wanted to work with?

Oh gosh, this is so hard. I’d like to work with Edward Norton. I think he’d be really cool to work with. I really admire him. And I really love Angelina Jolie; she’s like a role model to me. So those are two people I’d love to work with. I’m trying to think of shows that are still airing that I’d want to be on. You know, I don’t know. I just never really think about those things. Maybe I should think about it more. One of my dream things was being able to play a dual character and I did that in my last movie, called The Machine—and that was like something where I was like, “I want to do this as an actress.” And it’s like “Wow, I did that!” Now I’ve got to find the next thing to do. I’m really into transformative roles. I would like to play Charlize Theron in Monster or Hilary Swank, Boys Don’t Cry. One of those roles where you completely become a different person.  There’s something—I had that, when I was playing The Machine—when you don’t look like yourself or feel like yourself anymore. But it’s almost like you’re wearing a Halloween costume, you don’t feel afraid to take risks or stuff.

Arrow airs Wednesdays at 8/7 central on the CW.

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