Top dog for love

When she enters Wentworth as a former top dog, Kate Box has her heart on her sleeve.

Early in 2019 actor Kate Box got the call from Wentworth producers. It was the start of a path that leads to her debut tonight as former Top Dog, Lou Kelly.

“They checked to see what my life was looking like and whether I’d be interested, and of course I said ‘Yes!'” she tells TV Tonight.

“Then they called me into the writers’ room actually, a few months later. I was listening to Marcia’s (Gardner, script producer) brilliant mind, pumping out these stories that are just so unique and wonderful.

“I was sitting there giggling with joy on the inside”

“They talked to me about Lou’s story and the arc. Lou is such a tough nut who doesn’t show all her cards, so I was sitting there giggling with joy on the inside, but on the outside presented as quite cool and okay with it all.”

Lou Kelly is another Prisoner heritage character, originally played by Louise Siversen, but now reimagined for the hit Foxtel series.

Box, whose credits include Les Norton, Riot and Rake, says the character’s return to the prison will unsettle both inmates and staff. But she also has her own vulnerabilities.

“She’s been around, she knows how to survive”

“Lou Kelly was an ex-top dog at Wentworth -before Bea and before Jacs. She’s been around, she knows how to survive in prison and she spent more of her life in prison than out of it.

“When we see her come back into Wentworth, she of course is going to face all of those challenges that come with not being given the same respect when she was top dog. So she’s gotta swallow that pill.

“But she comes in this time with a massive love. I think that’s what drives her.”

Joining her is trans-character Reb Keane played by Zoe Terakes (another heritage character, originally Janet Andrewartha), with whom Kate Box underwent audition chemistry tests, plus new General Manager, Ann Reynolds played by Jane Hall (originally Gerda Nicolson).

“Lou and Reb come in as a pair and Lou is ferociously loyal, madly in love with Reb and will do anything to protect him. So a lot of her journey in this season is about what she would do for Reb.

“There was a lot of violence and it was pretty high adrenaline”

“Lou is not afraid to get down and dirty and get her hands into it. She carries out her own punishments. There was a lot of violence and it was pretty high adrenaline. I did get to the end of the day and decompress.

“But it’s fun living so far away from your real life.

“They really rip the ‘everyday’ out of you. It’s just drama upon drama. The stakes are high, it’s action the whole time.

“I’m not just carrying files around!”

8:30pm tonight on FOX Showcase.

9 Responses

  1. Also became hooked again after watching the first ep of this new season. But unless someone is going to explain quickly (like in the next episode…) how freaking Joan got out of that coffin – I am going to keep shaking my head in disbelief and not really getting into it I’m afraid.

    1. Did you not see the part where the bloke approached her at the atm and said she is a dead ringer for his friend Kath Maxwell…….think about it and it will make sense.

    2. Hi,

      I apologize for the late response to your question about how Joan Ferguson managed to escape being buried alive. I only just got the weekly email from tvtonight a few moments ago, but you obviously want the answers, so here is what I have noticed.

      Take a long careful look at the episode when Joan was buried alive. You will remember she was buried in a packing crate, not an actual coffin.

      I know from working on delivery docks that many crates are not very strong and it really doesn’t take a great amount of force to break them.

      The most important thing I noticed was that when Joan lit a match/lighter and saw the picture of Bea Smith above her, there is a pair of steel scissors laying next her head on the right side(her left side). She obviously proceeds to hack her way out of that packing crate with those scissors.

      Joan must have then found a substitute corpse or…

  2. Just watched the first episode and loved it. Lou was such an explosion of unpredictability and I love Kate’s kinetic approach to the new version. I don’t think Lou and Reb were romantically linked in Prisoner so that’s a powerful new dynamic.

  3. Saw the sneak preview of Ep 1 and it’s a cracker. Great to see the names Lou Kelly, Reb Keane, Anne Reynolds and Kath Maxwell (wait till you see who Kath Maxwell is played by!) back on screen.

  4. From memory, ‘Lou’ was only top dog for a week, before either Reb or Myra claimed it. It was testament to Louise Siversen’s talent that she was able to make that really nasty character, somewhat sympathetic towards the end of her run. I have had the pleasure of working with her, and it was great to see just how different she was and her range as an actor. Kate Box is another incredibly talented performer that they have smartly snapped up. What a great showcase for female actors in this country.

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