For Katheryn Winnick, who plays Lagertha, ‘Vikings’ is where the action is
You didn’t mess with Viking shield maiden Lagertha 1,000 years ago, and you probably wouldn’t want to mess with Katheryn Winnick now.
“I grew up with the martial arts,” says the deceptively modest-sized Winnick, who plays Lagertha on “Vikings,” which launches its third season Thursday night at 10 on History. “I got my black belt at 13, and I started a school when I was 16.”
She adds: “I love the physicality of playing Lagertha.”
In contrast to most period epics, “Vikings” practices remarkable gender equality.
“Lagertha is very self-sufficient,” says Winnick. “That wasn’t unusual in Viking culture. Women could fight, they could divorce, they could join explorations.”
Part of that, she suggests, was practical. “To survive the harsh winters,” she says, “everyone had to pitch in.”
And could join all the fun.
“The Vikings were great explorers,” says Winnick. “They always needed new land to farm.” She’s of Ukrainian descent and has blue eyes, “ so I have Viking blood somewhere. I’ll bet we all do.”
Viking life was also precarious.
“No one is safe,” she says. “You can get your head chopped off at any moment. You appreciate every episode you’re still there.”
You also earn that endurance.
“Being on this show is a workout,” says Winnick. “You need a lot of stamina” even without factoring in the cold on location and the challenging landscape.
The 37-year-old actress also is looking to other challenges.
She’s been filming the sci-fi movie “Geostorm,” playing a modern character, and she says she’d also like to do some comedy and stage work.
Meanwhile, she’s happy.
“I don’t want Lagertha to be killed off,” says Winnick. “She’s such a moral person. She’ll always do the right thing. This is work I’m proud of.”
Source: NY Daily News