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‘Bionic Woman’ Michelle Ryan Does Her Own Stunts, Interviews

Courtesy of NBC

British TV star Michelle Ryan has already conquered England (on the popular BBC soap EastEnders) and now she’s making a bid for Stateside domination with a starring role as the new Jamie Sommers on NBC’s popular remake of The Bionic Woman. As we probably should’ve anticipated, Ryan answered Vulture’s questions with cool, robotic efficiency and demonstrated a superhuman ability at dodging inquiries about Isaiah Washington.

We hear you do your own stunts. Any injuries yet?
Yeah, I’ve got this lump on my leg where I had to run through a fan, and another injury where I had my arms tied behind my back and I did a flying kick and fell over on my arm and on the harness and everything. That was sort of a burn.

Have you ever considered using a double instead?
No, I love it! I’m sort of a tomboy. There was one big stunt the other evening where I had to leap across two buildings, which I really wanted to do, and the NBC safety guy stepped in and was like, “No no no, the stunt doubles doing that.”

How do they create the illusion of your bionic limbs?
It’s all CGI. Like in the pilot when she rips back her clothes and sees that her legs are just machinery. They put lots of sticky dots on my legs, and in post-production they put in all the effects.

Your most recent show before Bionic Woman was EastEnders, which was super popular in Britain. Has it been a big adjustment switching from a soap opera to an action show?
The format isn’t too dissimilar. The pace is still fast. Of course there were rarely stunts on EastEnders!

That’s great. Hey, speaking of Isaiah Washington, any Grey’s Anatomy–like antics to report?
Not at all, he’s been brilliant to work with, really professional. He raises the bar in every scene he’s in. —Annsley Chapman

‘Bionic Woman’ Michelle Ryan Does Her Own Stunts, Interviews