From Lost to soap operas to MTV, actress Cynthia Watros has played quite an array of TV roles. Now she’s playing Elizabeth in Finding Carter, MTV’s newest scripted drama about a teenage girl, Carter, who finds out that the woman she thought was her mom for 16 years was actually her abductor. Cynthia dishes on playing Carter’s birth mom, how her real-life twin daughters inspired her on-screen ones, what it’s like to have Alyson Hanigan’s husband as your on-screen husband, and why this show is pretty much nothing like The Brady Bunch.
OKMagazine.com: Your character Elizabeth is a mom, a detective, a potentially cheating wife. Which of those three is most fun aspect to play?
Cynthia Watros: All of them. Because I think women are all different things. I love playing women that aren’t perfect, that are complex, and Elizabeth is definitely that. She’s in a marriage that has problems but there’s obviously something lacking and I think a lot of women can relate to that. And she’s struggling with relationships with her children. I certainly can have a lot of empathy for her and the struggles that she’s going through.
OKMagazine.com: Did you look to any other female TV detectives for inspiration for this role?
CW: I was a big fan of Rizzoli and Isles on TNT. Angie Harmon. I love the way she played her character. She was incredibly strong, she had a great sense of humor, I think she played that part beautifully. That was the last woman detective that I watched on television and I really like her work.
OKMagazine.com: You have twin daughters in real life and on the show. How did your two real daughters inspire you with your on screen ones?
CW: In every way. Except my daughter wasn’t kidnapped when she was three, but all the protective instincts, motherly love and frustration, all that stuff just naturally comes to surface because that’s what I do in my real life. It’s great. My children on-screen are 16 and my real children are almost 13.
OKMagazine.com: Are your girls excited that now you’re on MTV?
CW: Yeah, very excited. The show is on at 10 o’clock so it’s a little past their bedtime and this show is a little edgier, so we’ll see what episodes I’ll let them watch.
OKMagazine.com: Your on-screen husband, Alexis Denisof, also has two daughters (with How I Met Your Mother’s Alyson Hanigan). Did you guys bond over that?
CW: He’s lovely by the way. Being able to play his wife is such a joy and pleasure. He has a lot of females around him and hes awesome, he brought his whole family to Atlanta. We talk about bringing up daughters. His are alot younger. He’s in a whole different stage, but when you’re raising girls, no matter what age it is, there’s a lot of similarities.
OKMagazine.com: What can you tell us about Elizabeth’s relatoinship with Carter? Is she there for her or does she have her own agenda?
CW: I think she’s 100 percent there for Carter. And her family. I think nothing takes precedence over her family and proecting her family and keeping them togehrer, but she’s not perfect. She’s going to stumble and fall and I think that makes her more interesting and more real as a person.
OKMagazine.com: Do you think Finding Carter is similar to any other family dramas on TV?
CW: Well I can tell you, its not The Brady Bunch (laughs). It’s polar opposite of that, if that gives you any idea. I don’t know what other family on TV represents this sort of family but it’s not your typical nice normal family, which I really gravitate toward and I as a viewer really love to watch.
Watch the trailer for Finding Carter here:
Finding Carter premieres with back-to-back episodes tonight at 10pm on MTV! Are you excited for Finding Carter? Tweet us @OKMagazine.