Billions star cast gets candid with Team Viva.
Where do we find Lara at the end of season two? Where does the season three sort of pick up for her?
Well, she has been pretty much deceived by her husband. So much that there have been a few incidents leading up to this finale, where she had to forgive and come back and try to mend things for the sake of the family, but by the last episode, it’s just the straw that broke the camel’s back, where he is… There’s that moment where they have the phone call and he just says, “you know, of course I’m coming home to give you a hug,” and it was a setup. He used his wife in a setup. And that’s not okay. So, as we know, Lara’s not a pushover, so obviously that’s going to lead to something at the beginning of season three.
Wendy agrees to help Axe recover. Where does that leave Lara in season 3?
She doesn’t know the full effect of what’s going on, but she is already mad over the Wendy’s situation.
Absolutely, and that’s why Axe knows he can’t ever really tell her the truth, but again these are all the things that are leading up to ultimately, you know, this is going to be a really big rebuild for them but, him lying to her about Wendy it was almost the end of them. That’s how big that is and the fact that this is going on, luckily she doesn’t know to what extent.
It’s funny because we had some people asking, “Are Axe and Wendy going to get together?” Because it feels really intimate, it feels like on a really emotional level, he needs her and isn’t that really truly the intimacy in a relationship? If you don’t have that, you’re really just having a booty call on the side. I think that’s been Lara’s biggest problem is, he’s sharing things with Wendy that he won’t share with Lara and that feels way more intimate than if she were to find out that he went off and slept with someone. Which, of course we don’t want to see that guy either but, this is so much more-
It’s a really special relationship but, it’s really threatening for Lara.
Is Wendy a real threat to Lara?
For Lara it feels real, absolutely and I think that up until this point Lara feels pretty confident about where her relationship is with Axe. I don’t think that she’s threatened in a sense of it becoming a physical relationship between Wendy and Axe. I think that it’s almost like, if anything, if we’re really going to go back to the psyche of Lara, I think her being a woman who’s grown up street smarts and grown up fighting to get to where she’s at. And you have Wendy who’s grown up going to really fancy schools and is really intelligent and intellectual. It’s a bit of a slap to the face to Lara saying, “maybe you’re not equipped enough for me to have these conversations with you… maybe you’re not smart enough/intelligent enough.” It’s just sort of a … if we’re going to sort of dive into her psyche, it might stem from her own insecurities –
There is a scene in season 2 where she’s trying to get a little IPO going and she’s setting up her own business. And it falls apart. And Axe basically goes…
“You weren’t ready.”
“You weren’t ready.” It was like a poignant moment in a way, it’s like he almost took pleasure in slapping her down.
But his downfall is that he also gets caught up in the whole power-hungry environment that he lives in and even with Lara, “you’re not going to listen to me?” Because everybody listens to Axe; he’s the man with all the answers. And then his wife is challenging him and saying “no, I’m ready.” And she believes that she is ready. He may know that she’s not, but that’s not the way to go about things. He’s pulling his sort of macho power you know, forcing his power on his wife, where that’s not never a good idea. You know you have to be able to have the conversation and … I think that was a really tough one. Again it just puts a little bit of that insecurity back into Lara and the whole Wendy triangle of “I can’t do that right in my husband’s eyes. He won’t come to me with his problems.” She’s losing sort of her partner because that’s what they are really, true partnership, and if that starts to go, then “where are we/what do we have?”
What do you think her motivation is in season 3 is? Is it money or is it the family? Is it respect? Is it all of the above?
Listen. She’s not innocent in this. She’s equally as money hungry and power hungry, but she … it doesn’t go unbeknownst to her. She understands what has happened and she actively tries to ground everyone every now and then and to check themselves and go “alright, check the kids. They’re getting too spoiled” or whatever it is. But, there is a self-realization in season 3 where you know, she’s at a point in her life where 300 million dollars isn’t enough and she catches herself even saying it. In saying “I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but 300 million dollars doesn’t sound like enough.” So she’s gotten to that point, and still has the awareness which is always a good thing. Because that means you can always go back and you can fix things. It’s the people who are unaware that you are most scared of that are so in it.
What is it like to play somebody whose psyche has gotten to the point where she believes that she needs ridiculous amounts of money to survive?
It’s great to play. It’s interesting because it’s so hard to wrap your head around. I mean if someone said “You only have 300 million dollars,”… Did you just put “only” in front of that? That’s crazy. I think it’s an interesting place to be because I think about it just in comparison when I came out to L.A. and literally had 40 dollars to my name, to where I am now and I can support myself and my son and have a healthy lifestyle. If that was taken away from me and I had to go back to 40 dollars and not knowing when my next job was, that scares me because you’ve established your life a certain way. So I understand it in that sense, if they’ve been living a certain life. There overhead for months is different. It’s very different, and there are things where you go “You don’t need the private jet and you don’t need the 12-bedroom mansion. I mean you’re going to be fine without it, you have been in the past.” But your life is just different.
Will we see Lara developing her business?
To be honest with you, I don’t know yet. Right now it’s more relationship based or should I say, partnership-based. How Bobby and Lara are going to move forward after what happened in season 2. Where do they start? How do they rebuild? What type of relationship are they going to rebuild? Are they? I mean what’s that going to look like. That’s where we’re at right now. Not so much about business, it’s more about the marriage and the kids.
What was your take on the way they constructed the end of the season and how it set up the new season?
I kept telling people, “you’re not going to believe the last episode.” I mean, the fact that Bobby gets caught. You’re like, “He can’t, but he can get caught.” It’s Bobby Axlerod, that’s impossible. This is what I love about this show. Every episode we come in and we read an episode. We sit down at a table and read the episode aloud and you go, “How are they going to top this? What can they do that’s unsuspected? What’s the twist going to be?” And they always come up with it. They always come up with some kind of twist that blows your mind. Again, we all try to be the writers and go, “Oh I know what’s coming. Oh I know.” That’s what you do when you watch shows. And most shows deliver and you go, “I’m so smart, I figured it out.”
It’s so much better when you’re surprised. And that’s what Brian and David, it just goes to show how smart they are and how brilliant they are in their way of thinking. And also, I feel like it seems very true to life. I think that these guys that we’re dealing with in this show, if we compared them guys in real life for depicting, you’ve got to be on top of your game. You’ve got to be this smart. You’ve got to have things that you don’t see, that nobody else sees coming. Otherwise they wouldn’t be up there. You know?
What’s your take on how Lara’s evolved since we first met her on 101 two years ago, the evolution of her? Is she the same person?
I don’t know about her evolving per se, I mean I think we as an audience are just getting to see more of her, of who she is and what she means in Axe’s life and Bobby’s life. Because there really isn’t… It’s more just about her struggle with going from A to B, where they started and where they are now, and keeping that in check. I feel like we’ve seen more of that, just sort of, who she is in relation to Bobby. What she does for him behind the scenes, what she does for the family. Again I think it’s more of an uncovering.
I think we’re seeing her in different situations and how she’s handling them and that in turn is giving us more information on who she is, for me as well. So that’s my uncovering, but there isn’t really much growth as far as a person. I think she is who she is.
Could tell us why you think fans are going to love what’s to come in season 3?
Well, if you like all the twists and turns in the first two seasons, just wait ‘til season 3. There’s already in episode one…there are unbelievable moments where you go “Really? This is what”…. I mean I was pissed. First episode that I read, in a good way, it just evoked a lot of emotions so I think we’re going to see a lot more of the cat and mouse game between Bobby and Chuck.
But we’re going to see more development in characters and more breaks and new partnerships that are a bit dangerous, that makes it exciting.
(Watch Billions Season 3 every Tuesday at 10 PM only on AXN.)
Writer: Team Viva
Source: The pioneer