Linette Beaumont (photo: Micheal Shelford)
Murder is not usually fodder for laughs – unless it’s “Agatha Raisin.”
The quirky and charming mystery series comes from Acorn TV and is based on the bestselling novels from B.C. Beaton. It stars the always delightful Ashley Jensen as Agatha Raisin, a woman who retires early to a picturesque village and soon finds a second career as an amateur detective investigating mischief, mayhem, and murder in her town.
In the recent season 3 finale episode ‘As the Pig Turns,’ Agatha chases down Amy Beech, a suspicious lady in the village of Winter Parva as she investigates a gruesome murder. Actress Linette Beaumont
is this dubious woman -- well, she portrays her.
If you think you’ve seen Linette before, you have. The British actress has popped up all over your telly guest starring on “Endeavour,” “EastEnders,” “The Shooting Party,” “Coronation Street,” “Holby City,” “Casualty,” “Doctors,” “Murder in Suburbia,” “Trial and Retribution” and others.
Linette Beaumont recently answered some questions about “Agatha Raisin” and more:
Tell us about your role in “Agatha Raisin.”
LINETTE: I play Amy Beech, the glamorous ex-wife to the first murder victim in the season finale episode 'As the Pig Turns'. There is no love lost between my ex-husband and I. When I discover he has been murdered, I am only interested in what money I might find. Like Agatha Raisin, I love clothes and shoes and a bit of sparkle.
What would you consider your characters ‘best’ quality? And their ‘worst’?
LINETTE: Best - Amy is a strong woman very driven but you do see cracks and flaws. Throughout the episode Amy never smiles, she has this slightly brittle haunting quality about her. She is a character that's really fun to play.
Worst - Terribly materialistic!
How was it to work alongside Ashley Jensen?
LINETTE: Ashley is an incredible actress, and it was an absolute privilege to work with her. She drives the show, and being in a scene with her you can feel the energy and commitment she puts into every second. It's incredibly exciting working with actors like that. Her work is incredibly physical on “Agatha Raisin,” similar to a lot of shows I grew up with and loved like “Fawlty Towers” and “Laurel and Hardy.” The difference is Ashley does it all in these incredibly high stilettos -- pure class!
Ashley is also a wonderfully generous actor to work with, her process includes everyone. She really cares, so you have the luxury of working through the scene together. It is definitely not always like that. Working alongside Ashley Jensen was a bucket list moment for me.
Any interesting stories from the set you can share with us?
LINETTE: Early on in the show we are all gathered together at the Winter Fayre for the unveiling of a hog roast. Everyone is left shocked when the cover of the roast is removed to reveal a human torso, with a tattoo that says Amy and a love heart and arrow. In this scene, my character Amy screams and then faints. When I fainted, everyone on set thought I had actually fainted for real, and for a moment they were panicked and all came rushing to my aid. Obviously, I was fine and I just got up and dusted myself off. However, the joke was on me as I then had to faint again and again and again. But it's a good moment so it was worth it!
What’s the biggest lesson you learned from working on this project?
LINETTE: To believe in your choices as an actor, trust your instincts.
You also finished shooting a couple of films; what can tell us about those?
LINETTE: Unfortunately, I cannot share many details, but yes, I have. The Disney Film “Cruella,”
directed by the incredible Craig Gillespie with Emma Stone and Emma Thompson and Mark Strong. This was one of those pinch me, is this really happening moments. I am a big fan of the director’s and I particularly love his film “I Tonya,” the scene at the table with the amazing Alison Janney and Margot Robbie with the steak knife. It is so unsettling and brilliant -- it gave me goosebumps. So, working with Craig Gillespie was a huge deal for me and unforgettable.
Also coming up, I play Dorothy in “All Those Small Things,”
the debut feature from Rebel Kat Productions & Chi Rho Films. Directed by the very talented and lovely Andrew Hyatt and starring James Faulkner (“Game of Thrones,” “Da Vinci's Demons”) as Jonathan Robbins. This was a lot of fun with a superb cast and crew.
I am a producer at Moonlight Drive Productions, and am currently co-producing my second short film, “All the Things You Are.”
This is a very different role for me and I am really looking forward to the challenge. It’s inspired by a story aired on BBC Radio 4, which explored the experiences of people who had given up everything to care for their sick or elderly relatives. It is a funny and uplifting short film about love: the ultimate loving sacrifice between child and parent, the importance of expressing love to each other and learning to love yourself. Simon Callow is also attached to the film, so this is very exciting.
And, now just for fun:
Who’s your favorite actor/actress?
LINETTE: This is so hard; it is impossible to choose one! Depending on the day it would be either Katherine Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman, Diane Keaton, Meryl Streep, Sally Fields, and I love Catherine O'Hara, and of course Ashley Jensen!
What role from the past do you wish you could have played?
LINETTE: Samantha Stephens from “BeWitched.” I grew up thinking I would be in the remake once I was old enough. I can do the nose twitch! I practiced for that role for years, and then Nicole Kidman beat me to it.
Favorite movie or TV show from your childhood.
LINETT: “E.T.” It just always breaks your heart. I also loved Francis Ford Coppola's “The Outsiders.”
Tell us one thing that would surprise our readers to learn about you.
LINETTE: As a child growing up, I used to have a pet Cow called Flower.
How can fans keep up with you?
LINETTE: Follow me on Twitter: @LinetteBeaumont link
And Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheLinetteBeaumont link
Thanks, Linette -- we hope you keep acting suspicious!
Linette Beaumont in "Agatha Raisin" (courtesy: Acorn TV)
Linette Beaumont in "Agatha Raisin" (courtesy: Acorn TV)
Linette Beaumont (photo: Carl Fox)