Heather Graham (Annie Blackburne) Interview
In 1996, WIP editors Craig Miller and John Thorne interviewed Heather Graham, who played Annie Blackburne in Twin Peaks and Fire Walk With Me. Below is a portion of the interview that originally appeared in WIP 24.
Miller: Annie was treated rather brutally by Windom Earle in the final episode. Kenneth Welsh described how he slammed Annie's head into the windshield which wasn't in the original script. What was the mood on the set? How did you and Kenneth Welsh work out the violent sequences?
Graham: I think when he slammed my head into the windshield I actually did hit it in one take--and I think they used that one! [Laughter] I did hit it, but it didn't seriously injure me or anything--I just had contact with the window. We did that scene at night, and it was in this dark, foresty area. Some of the other actors were there. I think one of the other actors was in his trailer and was yelling these lines from Blue Velvet! [Laughter] It had this sense of being not totally normal. It was late at night, and it was getting later, and you entered into that sleep-but-still-awake feeling.
Thorne: Was it difficult to maintain that kind of heavy material? After the director yells, "Cut!" do you stay down or can you come back out of that?
HG: You can come back out of it easily! [Laughter] I mean as a woman you want to see women portrayed in situations other than being beaten up, but as an actor, it's just a high-pitched moment. It could even have its fun in a weird way!
JT: It's interesting that you say that, because some critics believe that Lynch portrays women as victims, and Annie seemed to be victimized in Lynch's episode. Did you feel that Annie had ultimately become a victim, or did her faith in God perhaps save her?
HG: I didn't think of it in terms of "victim," "non-victim" terms. I thought of it as this weird world. I enjoyed being in that world, because I was more involved in the story of the love, and the falling in love, and being loved by another person. I found that to be very reassuring, wonderful, and exciting. I was thinking of the things that were pulling us apart as bad things. I wasn't thinking, "Am I coming across as a victim?" I was thinking of it more as a love story.
CM: Let's move on to Fire Walk With Me. At what stage were you contacted about the role in the film?
HG: I guess around the time they were getting together with the other cast members.
CM: At that point did you know it was going to be a prequel instead of a sequel?
HG: At first they had different ideas about what to do, and then I knew it was going to be a prequel. There was one scene that was shot that was actually a flash-forward, kind of like a sequel.
JT: The ending of the film changed dramatically from the script to the final edit. How much of that original ending was filmed--with your character being rolled into the hospital?
HG: I don't remember filming being rolled into the hospital, but we did film a scene where I am asleep in a hospital bed. I have a ring on my finger, and a nurse steals the ring off of my finger. I think at some point, there may have been some person appearing by the side of the bed. I'm not sure.
CM: According to the script you tell the nurse the same thing you tell Laura--"My name is Annie and I'm with Dale in the Lodge, etc." The nurse takes the ring and puts it on her own finger. Then the script cuts to the Great Northern.
HG: Yeah. I wonder what would have happened? [Laughter]
[To read the rest of the Heather Graham interview, check out WIP 24!]
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