Wednesday, September 25, 2013 |
Orange is the New Black is fast becoming one of the buzziest new television shows. The show takes its inspiration from the book of the same name by Piper Kerman. Both book and program depict Piper's journey as she has to trade in her comfortable lifestyle to serve time in prison after she is caught for a crime she committed in a past lifetime. Taylor Schilling, who plays Piper on screen, stopped by George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight to talk about her role as Piper.
Schilling told Stroumboulopoulos that she drew on her own life experiences when researching the character. Growing up, her father was a district attorney and spent a lot of time in American prisons. "A lot of what my father talked about we are actually dealing with on the show," she said. "When I was growing up he made it clear that the correctional officers in the prison were often just as much of a problem as the prisoners."
Schilling went on to say that the prisoners "are often a population that doesn't have a voice, we don't hear the stories very often or question why people are even incarcerated." The show has been praised for showcasing both LGBT and prison culture -- two communities that are under-represented on television.
Schilling congratulated the director Jenji Kohan for her ability to bring characters to life that everyone can relate to. "They're people, we're dealing with them as specific people so it's less about having a trans character and it's more about [the character's] specific story," Schilling said. "There's something in these people that we may think we're separate from but then through the specificity of the story we see ourselves."