On Location with Covert Affairs Star Piper Perabo

At the start of Season Two, Covert Affairs star Piper Perabo chatted with us during a press call and teased a bit of what was coming up for Annie Walker. While visiting the cast and crew on location during last month’s Covert Affairs set tour, Piper sat down with us to share a bit more on what’s in store!

Can you tell us about the whirlwind of travel you got to do for the first couple of episodes this season?

Yeah  … we filmed in Puerto Rico for Guam, for the premiere, and then we flew then onto Paris. So we did Toronto, Puerto Rico, Paris, then a day in New York, then back to Toronto. We were there for two and a half days in Puerto Rico, and 36 hours in Paris … I think it was like five or six days altogether. It was really fun, though. To run out into the real world is always kind of a mind blower. It’s your actor “dream come true” that you’re running across the Plaza at the Louvre, and it’s [really] the Plaza at the Louvre.

In the first season, you got to do some scenes in other languages. What languages have you explored so far this season?

Well, I did more Russian this year – we did Russian in the pilot in season one – and I did a three page scene in Russian – (in an episode with guest star Peter Stormare) – which was the biggest foreign language scene I’ve done. It’s in Cyrillic, so you have to learn it phonetically and then which sound means what. I don’t know if we put a new language in this year, but that Russian scene, we sing in Russian, we get drunk, so you’re getting progressively more drunk and speaking in Russian. At one point, I looked at the writer and I was like, “really?  Three pages?  Drunk in Russian?” and she was like, “You said you wanted to do the languages.” So the Russian scene was hard, but fun. There was a Russian guy in the scene, too, so he could kind of correct me.

Although you have a gun in the Covert Affairs posters, your character does not carry a gun. Do you think this is a benefit or a detriment to Annie?

I do like that I don’t have a gun, because I think it makes the fight scenes and all the action sequences, by nature, more creative.  You’re much more vulnerable, obviously, if you don’t have a weapon, even if the other person doesn’t have one either, because unless I’m fighting a woman my size, I’m really at a disadvantage. We did this fight scene underneath a planetarium, where I’m fighting a girl my size, and only the safety lights are on, so not only is it dark, there [are] no weapons, and we’re evenly matched. To me, that was really cool. If you have a gun, that kind of stuff would never happen. So I’m not really for getting the gun yet, it’s more fun without.

We have advisors with the CIA, and CIA officers do not carry guns on American soil because they don’t have a badge. They really only carry them on foreign soil, and even then sometimes they don’t. I’ve spoken to one agent that I now know, who said you can carry the weapon of your preference when you’re on foreign soil. So I said, “What’s your weapon of preference?” and she said, “I purposefully don’t carry a weapon because I think it would spook my assets.” She has security that her assets don’t know are in the room or standing in the street, and they have weapons, but she doesn’t carry because she thinks it’ll make the assets nervous.

If you could pick any cover for Annie at some point, what would it be?

There is something that I’ve been working on this with the writers. It would have to be like a season opener or something, so that you could push the trailer for it – I think it would be fun that as a cover, Annie had to get married. So in the trailers, maybe she’s marrying Jai, or Auggie, and you see the dress, and walking down the aisle, and you start to see the people in the audience, like Joan, and Arthur, and Henry Wilcox. In the trailers you think she’s going to marry somebody, but then somewhere in the ceremony, all hell breaks loose, and you blow the place up with guns and exploding flowers, and the priest is CIA. First of all, a wedding dress is a great thing to hide weapons in. I don’t know why you would have to get married, but they’ll figure that part out. I just want to wear the dress. It’d be an awesome fight scene in a wedding dress.

This summer, Covert Affairs is making its debut at San Diego Comic-Con. Are you excited to be able to interact with the fans, and hear their reactions to the show in person?

I’ve never been to Comic-Con, but I have friends who have. My friend Lena Headey did the 300 [panel] and so she was there, and Chris Pine told me about it. We’re going with Sendhil, so apparently going with one of the Heroes is like going with Mr. Spock. [Sendhil’s] been giving me a lot of pointers; he’s like, “You just got to be cool, we’re going to do a lot of photos, you got to fluff up your hair a lot.” I think it’ll be really fun. It’ll be cool to go with someone like Sendhil, because he kind of knows the lay of the land. And apparently, it’s huge. I can’t really imagine it. I can’t wait to see the backstage hallways – do the different casts pass each other? Are there rumbles? Do people know each other? Are people making out that know each other secretly from other shows? I always want to know what’s going down [backstage]. It’ll be awesome.

Catch tonight’s new episode of Covert Affairs, 10/9c on USA.

Photo Courtesy of USA Network

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