FitzGerald’s “rite of passage” into the acting world was like many other actors’ — an episode of SVU. In her first television appearance, she played twins, one of whom gets involved in the illegal animal-smuggling business and ultimately is mauled by a big cat. “I had this insane tiger mauling prosthetic on my neck so I was like ‘I’ve arrived. Here I am. I’m a real actor now.’”
It was “a nice surprise,” FitzGerald says of finding out she would be the killer on an episode of Blue Bloods. She played the “innocent” fiance of a murdered New York City doorman. “I think it’s the first and last killer I’ve played, so I’d love another crack at it.”
FitzGerald recalls the amazing New York City locations that Gossip Girl brought her to during her time as Epperly Lawrence, Blair’s (Leighton Meester) boss at W Magazine. “That was such a fun job,” she says. “They shot in the most unbelievable locations, like hidden locations all over New York. Places you would never normally get to see.” And they really did shoot at W Magazine!
A fan of the show since Day 1, Fitzgerald says she cherished her time with the cast of the Fox comedy. She even got to practice her improvisation skills. “Everyone is so incredibly funny and so kind and actually they’re changing lines all the time. It’s play. It was a blast.”
MASTERS OF SEX
Viewers saw an amazing progression in FitzGerald’s Libby Masters, from housewife to hippie over the four seasons that Masters of Sex ran on Showtime. But FitzGerald says the experience that has stuck with her the most over the two years since the show’s finale is Libby’s time in a nudist colony: “I’m probably one of the few actors on the planet who’s gotten to work with 150 naked people for a couple of days straight. So whatever happens in my career, I have that.”
“Wasn’t it gorgeous?” FitzGerald says of Rectify‘s final — and much-discussed among fans — final scene, which showed Aden Young’s Daniel walking toward FitzGerald’s Chloe. “We were in Georgia, just south of Atlanta, and I had never really spent time there and it was just so spectacularly beautiful where we were. That’s one of my all-time favorite shooting days. The weather was perfect, and this angelic baby — it was just magic.”
FitzGerald remembers needing a little help when it came to medical jargon on Code Black. The actress did her research before starting to film her role of a higher-up at the CDC, but she still wanted to make sure she sounded knowledgeable. Thank goodness for on-set experts! “They have people on set usually for things like that,” she says, “where if you have questions and need expert advice, there are people there to be like ‘Oh, this is what this is,’ ‘This is how a doctor would respond in this moment,’ things like that, which was really nice.”