By ANGELA DAWSON
Front Row Features
HOLLYWOOD—Katey Sagal is suiting up for her last ride on “Sons of Anarchy.” For seven seasons, the actress has played Gemma Taylor Martin, the conspiring, dangerous matriarch of a biker gang. In playing such a ruthless and also fiercely protective character (toward her family and her motorcycle club), she has managed to wipe out most viewers memories of the goofy housewife Peggy Bundy she played for 11 seasons on “Married… With Children.”
Now 60, the L.A. born actress is set to wind up the popular FX series soon. By phone, the versatile actress with an easy laugh, acknowledges that it is tough letting go of her character, but she is proud to have been part of the popular series created by her husband producer Kurt Sutter and is looking forward to being in his next series.
Q: What were some of the biggest challenges you had with this character over the years and what were the high points?
Sagal: It’s constantly challenging, which as an actor you only hope for, so I felt every season brought a new set of things that I’ve never done before and needed exploring. It was that kind of job where week to week, episode to episode, there was always a little something that I felt like, “This will be great!” The overall challenge of it was playing somebody that was so very different from myself. Her maternal instincts are similar to mine, but her ways and means of doing things were something very foreign to me. I don’t live in an outlaw world and I don’t carry a gun and I don’t do those things. The high points were numerous, so it’s difficult to zero in on. I’m about to re-watch the whole thing.
Q: Several members of the cast were recently on Conan O’Brien’s talk show but you weren’t there because you were making a film. What are you were working on and do you feel you’ve already mentally moved on from the series?
Sagal: I watched them all on “Conan,” and I wished I had been there. They were all so fantastic and you could just feel the vibe of our show. It was lovely to see, but I’m in Rhode Island now doing a movie called “Bleed for This,” which is the life story of (boxer) Vinny Pazienza. Miles Teller is playing Vinny and I play his mother. It takes place in the ‘80s. It’s a pretty cool movie, so I’ve been working on that and that’s why I wasn’t with the rest of the cast on “Conan.”