Crime-fighting duo Jane Rizzoli (Angie Harmon) and Maura Isles (Sasha Alexander) are back for a brand new fourth season of the hit detective series Rizzoli & Isles.
In the past we've seen the fearless females risking their lives to solve some of Boston's most notorious crimes.
Will season four be any different? We doubt it. Even though our preview clip shows a cheery family encounter, we have a funny feeling that trouble is just around the corner...
There’s more drama, dead bodies, and designer heels in store for Angie Harmon as she returns to bust crime in Boston as tough-as-nails detective Jane Rizzoli for season four of Rizzoli and Isles.
Angie chatted to us about being one half of TV’s hottest crime-bustin’ duo, the terror of working in Hollywood, her Baywatch origins, and how she juggles fame with motherhood.
Do you feel quite close to Jane now that you've been playing her for all these years?
I think that people respond to when an actor and their character come together and gel, and Angie and Jane do gel so hopefully that translates on screen. Obviously Janet [Tamaro, writer and producer] is going to write the script, but she trusts me enough to know that I have Jane's complete and best interests at heart, so if something doesn't work then we'll come together as writer and actor and work it out. She allows me to come into that character and live it in every crack and crevice, and really to just embody Jane.
Jane’s all about the gun and the badge, so how do you approach her vulnerability in matters of the heart?
I kind of put Jane as a girl in high school. I remember being back in high school and having a boyfriend who I just adored. I hung onto his every word, and you just think it's so wonderful to love. And then you get your heart broken and it's devastating. I try to keep Jane in that, so then it’s exceptional when she steps out of that girl and matures a little bit.
Jane might be tough, but you work in a world where one minute you can be at the top of your game, and the next…
I don’t doubt it. What’s that like?
I'm just so blessed and thankful to be somewhat successful at what I love doing. I can't imagine doing any other job. Maybe it's weird that I like to pretend to be another person for 90 hours a week… But I think that God gave me this one desperate need to be an actress for a reason.
But at one stage you talked about retiring…
Yes. I was done.
Really? What brought you to that point?
Well I've always had a love hate relationship with Los Angeles and I think I was in one of my hate stages. I have three daughters and I saw that L.A. was just too fast for them. I was prepared to drop the thing that I love the most and take my girls out of here and do what's best for them. But when I decided that, Rizzoli and Isles appeared on my doorstep the next day.
Literally on your doorstep?
My manager lives up the street and he put it on the doorstep and ran off!
I said no, absolutely not. I'm leaving, I'm going, I'm moving, I'm done with this, and that's it. So thank God they were patient and thought highly enough of me to keep asking me, I’m very grateful.
What keeps drawing you back to television?
When I was younger my heart was in movies and I thought if I wasn't doing movies then I wasn't successful. As I've gotten older, I've learned that as actors we're kind of like gypsies; we go where the work is. To be in all these wonderful cities, and to play these different people is such an honour and so much fun, whether they're the most disgusting and revolting human on the planet or whether they're someone good-hearted like Jane.
I also don't think that acting is ever perfected. Unless you're Meryl Streep, of course. I really enjoy continuously learning. I will be on my deathbed still wanting know about everything in life. And that's the thing that I love about acting, I don't feel that I'm ever done.
And it all started with Baywatch when David Hasselhoff discovered you. Are you still pals?
He's so wonderful and we are still friends, yes. Actually, one of the things that I get a lot of compliments on is the way I behave on set and run my set, and I learned that from him: to make sure that everybody's happy and laughing, because it's tough. Nobody wants to do 90 hours a week. I don't care how old you are, you've got somewhere else you want to be on a Friday night at two in the morning.
I’ve heard rumours that he’s been talking about whether Baywatch should come back…
Oh, can you imagine? Oh, imagine all the surgery!
Maybe not then… How has Rizzoli and Isles grown, for you, over the years?
The first season was quite different, and the first episode is very serious, very dark. But the relationship with Jane and Maura is almost like a character on it’s own on the show now. It's its own entity. And I've been told that's what people love about it and that's what people want to see.
How do you think they compare to other duos on TV?
I spent some time with the homicide unit in Boston, just to see what it was like, and you could see what the women were doing to fit in. They really took their looks down and tried to blend in and be as male as possible. And, if anything, it was just to sort of get respect and be taken seriously. It really made an impact on me, so that sort of translated through the series.
I think people like to see two women at the top of their field, and these girls need each other – they're the only women in that entire building. They know each other's personal life and history, so they're able to be there for each other in personal arenas as well as at work. I don't know of anything on television presently that’s like that.
How do you balance being an actress and then coming home to be a mum and wife?
It's a lot harder than you think, especially when your children are far away and you're not tucking them in daily and things like that. It's horrible. I try and fly back and forth as much as I can, but I don't know that I do balance it…
I really sheltered my girls though so they didn't know that I was an actress until probably this year. I think it was Meryl [Streep] that said we choose this life; our children don't. And we do, as a society, have such a bizarre attraction to fame.
I'm sure there's lots of judgment about what we do. I know what works for my family and I know that in my gut, I know that right now we're doing the right thing. I don't know how I know, but I just know.
Maybe it's weird that I like to pretend to be another person for 90 hours a week