In CW’s “Arrow,” Caity Lotz played Sara Lance, aka the bloodthirsty Canary, who met her demise in Season 3. But it turns out that her character is more like a cat with nine lives.
“Do I do it? Do I not?” Lotz said she pondered when told that Sara was going to be resurrected in “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,” the network’s latest comic-book foray. “But in the end, it’s hard to pass up.”
Thanks to the regenerative Lazarus Pit, Sara is revived as the White Canary, poured into corseted leather and urged by her sister, the Black Canary, to forgo the darkness and fight in the light.
Lotz, 29, who in a past life as a parkourist used to leap across buildings, has had a few reincarnations of her own: as a girl-group singer and as a dancer with Lady Gaga (you can spot her in the “Paparazzi” video) before taking on perhaps her most memorable role as Stephanie, Anna Draper’s niece in “Mad Men,” who brings a sparkle to Don Draper’s eye.
“I see him around town, and he’s always so nice to me,” she said of Jon Hamm, who starred as Don.
In a recent call from Vancouver, where she lives while shooting “Legends,” Lotz talked about how, this time around, the Canary just wants to have fun. These are edited excerpts from the conversation.
Q: So, the Canary is pretty tough. Do you perform all your stunts?
A: I’m a very physical person. I’ve studied martial arts, tricking, which is big, flashy moves with people flipping around, and I used to do parkour. So I do whatever I can that’s not too dangerous, like most of the fighting. But if my character has to run and jump through a glass window, where things can get scratched up, I’m like, “Yeah, you get that, Stunt Double, thank you!”
Q: You started out as a dancer.
A: I started dancing professionally at 17, and I moved to Los Angeles the second I graduated. Then I got an opportunity to be in a girl group (Soccx), like the Spice Girls, and I moved to Berlin. When I came back, I started dancing with Lady Gaga and touring with Avril Lavigne. But soon I lost my creative passion and knew it wasn’t for me.
Q: What was Lady Gaga like?
A: I remember getting to the set (of “Paparazzi”) at 4:30 or 5 a.m., and I would show up like a bum, a homeless person. And she would step out of the car, wearing this underwear contraption and full tights and heels, already in character.
Q: Has Canary changed in this reincarnation?
A: She’s still the same tortured lost soul who regrets what she has been, but the tone is lighter, and there’s a lot of room for levity. Before, she never really smiled and never made jokes. I think this is going to help her realize that she’s happy she went through what she went through.
Q: How important was it for you that she remain bisexual?
A: Very important, and the producers were on board as well. I’ve gotten a lot of feedback from girls or women talking about how much it means to them to have a character like Sara.
The LGBT community is underrepresented on television, and I think it’s nice to have characters like Sara, because it normalizes it for everyone. It’s not a huge deal or anything, and that’s how it should be in life.
Q: Some viewers will forever think of you as Stephanie on “Mad Men.”
A: “Mad Men” was my first job, and that legitimized me. Thank God, I didn’t realize what a big deal it was at the time, or I would have been very nervous. I was pretty green.
Q: You two had chemistry.
A: What else I remember is that he felt creepy having to hit on Stephanie, because she was so young. He didn’t want to have to come on so strong. I think the audience thought she was too young for him, too. Ha.