Emmanuelle Vaugier considers herself lucky. The Vancouver native has had the opportunity to play very different roles on projects north and south of the border whether it be The Morrigan on Lost Girl and cop Gabriela Del Toro on Republic of Doyle or Mia on Two and a Half Men and Det. Jessica Angell on CSI: NY.
Her latest role? Portraying Niko, a mixologist in a handful of episodes of Mistresses. Vaugier dished on her Mistresses gig, moving behind the camera and saying goodbye to Lost Girl for good.
The press release says you play Niko, ‘a tough and sexy mixologist at Wunderbar who becomes a thorn in Joss’ (Jes Macallan) side.’ Can you give me some more details?
Emmanuelle Vaugier: She’s a mixologist, so she’s at the top of her game. She has four tattoos. We don’t know much about her past going in. There are things that you discover about her that I can’t reveal that will come out later in an ‘Oh my God!’ moment. It was an ‘Oh my God’ moment for me too because I didn’t realize it until the episode script was on my desk. She’s dark, edgy and is used to getting what she wants and she’s set on getting Harry [Brett Tucker]. And that’s a problem for Joss.
Obviously a spot on a show’s regular cast is ideal, but does part of you enjoy dropping in to guest star on shows like Mistresses where you get to play in someone else’s sandbox for a bit?
Absolutely. It means that I can come in and am there for a short period of time and have fun. Then I leave and pick up a new character and do something new. However, the sense of being on a show and being there for the duration and being a series regular definitely has its upside. There is a family feeling and being in it for the long haul.
Could Niko return to Mistresses?
It’s left open-ended. It’s possible.
I’ve made lifelong friends on that show. That part of it sucks, letting go of that, but we had a good run.
You’ve been in lots of projects both north and south of the border. You’ve starred in genre projects like Lost Girl and Smallville and conventional stuff like Two and a Half Men and CSI: NY. It’s been a very exciting and varied career so far.
I’ve been very lucky that way. I’ve gotten to play a lot of different roles in different genres and a lot of actors don’t get to do that. There are more things that I do than others, but I’ve been blessed. It keeps things interesting and fun for me and keeps the creative juices flowing.
You were great in Republic of Doyle playing a Mexican detective.
[Laughs.] I remember having a conversation with Allan Hawco on the phone. I said, ‘Sooooo, how tied to the accent are you?’ I’d never done it and I knew it was going to be a challenge. We hired a dialect couch and really worked at it because it wasn’t an accent that was in my repertoire. In the States, if they want someone who is Latina, they hire a Latina and not me even though I look it. In Canada it’s different.
Let’s go from in front of to behind the camera. Do you have a hankering to write, produce and direct your own stuff?
I want to do more of that. Directing, not so much. But producing … I love the business side of things. I do have a passion and knack for that and I’d love to learn more about that process. Writing is something that terrifies me. I need to take a workshop or something. People say, ‘Well, just write.’ And I’m like, ‘But I feel like a dumb ass. I don’t know.’ I have all these books that I’m looking at and I’m coming up with all of these ideas with friends. It’s a process, but it’s a lot harder than people think. I don’t know what I’m doing, but I’m going to learn.
You’re very active on Twitter.
It’s really nice to have that direct access to your fans and be able to tell them what you’re doing and promote your career that way as well as having that human presence instead of being this person they see on television. They actually have a dialogue with you … jokes a sent around and moments are shared. I do a lot of conventions on my downtime thanks to Lost Girl and I’ve been able to meet people on Twitter in person, which is great.
Tell me about your charity, The Fluffball.
I’ve always been a huge animal person, and when it came to giving back and doing something for the community my thing was animals. I created The Fluffball and what we do it throw an annual cocktail event to benefit a different rescue organization every year. This year it’s The Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation, based in Los Angeles.
What have you got coming up that you can tell me about?
I just finished a movie in Victoria called Stranger in the House. And then Sept. 6 the final season of Lost Girl starts on Showcase.
How do you feel about the end of Lost Girl?
It was one of those special shows where the cast all got along really well. We hung out, we still see each other and keep in touch. Whenever one of us is in Toronto or L.A. we always make a point to get together and hang out or make dinner, drink wine and catch up. I’ve made lifelong friends on that show. That part of it sucks, letting go of that, but we had a good run.
Mistresses airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CTV.