Julie Ann Emery talks PREACHER Season 3 and More

Preacher season 3 airs tonight on AMC. In honor of the premier, we had the chance to interview Julie Ann Emery who plays Lara Featherstone on the hit series. She has starred in such shows as Better Call Saul and Fargo season one, and many others. She also starred on the big screen in The Gift and and Hitch.  Keep reading for our interview and to learn more about Emery’s career.

Being a fan of season 1, getting cast in season 2, and season 3 is starting soon do you still get awestruck that you get to work on this amazing show and with a talented group of people?

Talented group of people is the key phrase there. I was a fan of the show, and I am very enamored of Garth and Steve’s comics, but showing up to work every day with Michael Slovis (of Breaking Bad), saying Sam Catlin’s words (again of Breaking Bad), John Grillo (WestWorld, The Left Overs), and sparring in scenes with such a high level cast… it is an absolute thrill.

I also feel the pressure of that for sure. We also feel pressure from the fans’ expectations. When it was announced that I was playing Featherstone, there were folks on social media saying, “I’ve been waiting 17 years, 10 years, 12 years… to see this character brought to life.” I feel a great responsibility to deliver, but it is pressure that exists in the best way possible.

You’ve mentioned before that you started reading the comic series when you got cast. Have you finished it and if so, what are your thoughts on it?

As I read the comics, I thought some of the same things I think every time I read one of our TV scripts, “How on Earth did they get away with doing this?” And in the 90s? Even in the Vertigo world. They are so rich in character and story. The art work is so rich in expression, but the comics really do push the envelope in every possible way. I always wonder what the conversation was every time Garth and Steve turned in a new edition to the editors.

All that said, my biggest takeaway from the comics was this massive, complex, and very modern conversation about Good versus Evil, faith, humanity, and Right versus Wrong. The Grail literally wear white suits, but in no way are they the good guys.

How excited are you going into season three of Preacher? Anything you can tell us/excited to see play out?

I like to operate in a spoiler free zone. That said, Featherstone killed Tulip at the end of Season 2. There is a definite reckoning coming for that.

We’ve already seen pictures of some of the other characters from the comics floating around the internet. I can tell you they are the tip of the iceberg.

Fans of the comics who have been waiting for some of their favorite characters to pop up or story lines to play out, season 3 is the season for you. This season is off-the-charts crazy.

How much fun has it been to portray Lara Featherstone considering she can “change her appearance in mere seconds”?

Featherstone is always super prepared for any contingency at any moment. If you look closely in some of the scenes from Season 2, you’ll see her wig hanging on the coat rack by the door, and a sweater. Her gun handy. A change of shoes.

But the speed of transformation isn’t the fun part. The fun part is the fact that the producers let me run as far as I could with the personas themselves. I build them as if Featherstone herself were doing the kind of deep character homework that I do for any role I am playing, and working in wardrobe with physicality, voice pitch, slight accents.

I made a note when I read my first script that Featherstone’s personas seem more like real people than she herself does, and I think that holds true. Somewhere in Featherstone’s past something happened that broke her. Where her heart used to be is now something flat and dark that allows her to take action without a second thought for collateral damage. We get to know more sides of her this season for sure, but she is still broken on the inside.

We know you’re a massive Star Wars fans so we need to ask, have you seen Solo A Star Wars Story yet?

We were shooting the end of Preacher S3 when it came out so I had to stay off line for a bit until I could get a night off. But YES!

Here’s the thing about Star Wars, I am a fan. I love being a fan. I grew up on the original trilogy. I wanted to be Han Solo, and I wanted an Ewok of my very own and Chewie as my best friend. I know there has been some fan controversy over the last couple of movies, but put a bucket of popcorn in my lap and the Millennium Falcon on screen and I am in and I am happy. And for the record, I loved TLJ, Rey is everything I yearned to see as a young tom boy of a girl growing up and I will be there for multiple screenings of the next one. Also, #TeamRose! Don’t @ me ya’ll. You aren’t gonna change my mind on this.

Being a Star Wars fan, what do you think about the “Toxic” fandom that has been prevalent as of late? For instance, the treatment of Kelly Ann Tran.

I wish that fandoms were less judgemental. It’s really fun to get on Reddit and debate points of a film or TV show, to really nerd out with fellow fans, but it is a different thing entirely to call someone an idiot for liking something you did not. You are ruining the fun for all of us, so just stop it. There are all kinds of levels of fandom. Super deep to casual. They are all okay. They should all be welcome and acceptable and celebrated.

In terms of Kelly Ann Tran, I LOVED her in TLJ. I stand with her, and I think her treatment goes past even toxic fandom. We are in a toxic moment in our society, and the internet makes people think they are speaking without consequence — that they are not speaking to a person. I look forward to a course correction societally across the board.

I am heartbroken for her that this brilliant wonderful thing turned into something awful in her life, and I will never understand it. Her character was the embodiment of every enthusiastic fan who wishes they could get in on the action with the heroes of Star Wars. I loved it, and I’ll be there cheering her on in the next movie.

Do you have any other projects you are excited to be a part of or that are going into production soon?

I am leaving in 3 days for a project that is not public knowledge that I am SUPER excited about. So, yes… but I can’t tell you yet? But I really want to.. .but I will get so busted if I do. (No, it is not Star Wars. I would dress like an alien and be an extra on Star Wars… but that’s not what this is.)

We can’t wait to watch season 3 of Preacher and are excited to find out what Emery will be working on in the future. She is a great actress and is a pleasure to watch on the small and big screen. Be sure to follow Julie Ann Emery on Twitter at @julieannemery.

Learn a bit more about Emery by reading her bio below.

Julie Ann Emery is best known for her breakout recurring role in “Better Call Saul,” AMC’s critically-acclaimed prequel to “Breaking Bad.” Julie Ann took on the role of Betsy Kettleman, one of the most mysterious characters in the series, who at first glance appears to be an average wife and mother, but ends up butting heads with Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) over her husband’s embezzlement case.
You may also recognize Emery as “Ida Thurman” from the Emmy and Golden Globe winning mini-series “Fargo,” starring Billy Bob Thornton, Martin Freeman, Oliver Platt, and Bob Odenkirk. She also starred as Special Agent Jennifer Sampson in Rod Lurie’s critically acclaimed series “Line of Fire (“an agent so fiery and confident…she’s reminiscent of Jodie Foster in The Silence of The Lambs” – NY Daily News).  Emery appeared as Amelia Keyes in Stephen Spielberg’s Emmy nominated mini-series, “Taken,” and in recurring roles on USA’s “Suits,” DirecTV’s “Damages,” “The Riches” for FX, Showtime’s Emmy-nominated drama series “Dexter,” and “NCIS.”
Julie Ann made her big screen debut in the hit romantic comedy Hitch, alongside Will Smith, Eva Mendes and Kevin James, and went on to star as Holly in the hit indie-comedy History of Future Folk. Her most recent film project featured Julie Ann as a therapist to Mckenna Grace in “Gifted,” also starring Chris Evans. 
Photos by Vince Trupsin
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Jim Napier

Jim Napier

Geek with a voracious appetite for movies, technology, social media and digital marketing.