Interview with Natasha O’Keeffe on Strike - Lethal White

Strike - Lethal White Cormoran Strike returns in a new four-part thriller for BBC One

Natasha O’Keeffe plays Charlotte Ross in Lethal White



Can you introduce us to Charlotte and where we find her now in Lethal White?

In Lethal White we find her with a very large baby bump. It’s twins, and they’re Jago Ross’ twins. There’s a moment where hers and Strike’s worlds collide as he, quite literally, bumps into the bump.

Have you read the books?

I haven’t read the books, no. I’m not a quick reader. A lot of my friends who’ve read them are very excited that I’m playing Charlotte because she comes in, does the haunting, and then exits.

I think she’s the kind of damaged character who makes an entrance, shakes everything up a bit, and then leaves. Maybe I’ll read the books when the series is all finished, whenever that is. Are they biggies? I have a huge stack of books at home to which they’ll all be added. You never know, it’s nearly Christmas - maybe I’ll get them!

When portraying Charlotte, is it an added pressure that your friends are saying they’re excited to see you as the character?

I wouldn’t say it’s an added pressure. In fact it puts a little spring in my step coming to work, because I’m getting to play someone they’re all excited to see on screen. It’s quite nice, actually.

What do you think Charlotte represents as a character? Is she the typical haunting ex?

Charlotte has been written as a haunting presence for Strike, probably the worst kind of ex that you could possibly want. She’s manipulative and has a way of being there at the very moment someone’s feeling their weakest. The quintessential evil ex, you might say. But, despite all that, she’s also rooted in something real.

How much of an Achilles’ heel is Charlotte to Strike? What makes her still a threat to Strike’s peace of mind?

Despite being from different worlds, I think their respective backgrounds were equally dysfunctional. And it’s that classic thing; maybe she represents those demons that haven’t been dealt with, coming back to bite you.

Charlotte is the shadow that reappears. Or perhaps one half of it. I think Strike carries the weight of two relationships with him, those being with his mother and Charlotte. There’s a lot of darkness there. They both damaged him in their way. It’s a love he wishes he could leave behind. But he can’t, and they continue to creep up on him.

We get a sense that Charlotte will continue to be part of the story going forward. What role is she playing here and possibly in the future for Strike?

I would love for her to reappear in the future. That’s a nod to Robert Galbraith! It’s a fascinating relationship to play. The fact that she’s got these children yet she’s still on the hunt for Strike, wanting to rekindle their relationship, it could go anywhere really - it’s totally dysfunctional. And that only makes it more interesting for an audience.

I have no idea what’s going to happen and what the future holds, but you could take it to a fascinating place.

What makes the tension between Charlotte and Strike so appealing to audiences?

I think one of the strengths of the series is how it explores relationships. You’ve got all these lovely shapes going on, with existing relationships, past relationships, and each crime comes with its own layers and individuals to follow. And then, of course, there’s Strike and Robin, and their will they, won’t they.

There’s so much going on and so many different directions to go.

Source BBC One

August 14, 2020 6:05am ET by BBC One  


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