Femme on Fire: Dichen Lachman

By Michael J. Lockhart

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Femme on Fire: Dichen Lachman:

After watching our newest obsession steam up the screen on cult hits *Dollhouseand Being Humanover the past few years, we were beside ourselves in anticipation when we heard the sexy Nepalese native had landed a starring role on our pick for hottest action show of the fall, ABC’s Last Resort.*

*Joining us for a literal bedside chat while filming in Hawaii, our latest Femme on Fire Dichen Lachman could only describe the pillow talk situation as “appropriate” for her Playboy debut; thankfully, she didn’t take too much time away from stealing every scene or creating one of her gorgeous self-portraits (above). *

Lachman: Doing this interview from bed is kind of appropriate. (Editor's Note: Bedside was due to a time change mix-up)

Playboy.com: Wildy appropriate if you ask us. It definitely brings it to another level.

What was it like growing up between Nepal and Australia?

Lachman: I lived in Kathmandu until I was seven, but [Australia] was another world. Our house in Nepal was surrounded by rice paddies, very close quarters — it was like living back in time. Then moving to Australia was amazing, I’m glad we did, but it was a very big transition. It was very lonely. It was probably the biggest [transition] of my life.

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Playboy.com: Tell us about Last Resort. What’s the show about?

Lachman: It’s a show about a nuclear submarine that’s given orders on a secondary network to destroy an entire country, and the captain of the sub is hesitant without having the orders coming through the proper channels. The secondary only comes into play when something really bad is happening in Washington, like everyone is wiped out. But he questions this order and the U.S. Navy attacks and they find themselves marooned on an island wondering why they were hit by their own men. All this stuff is going on in Washington, but I don’t think I can talk about that. [laughs]

*Playboy.com: *How would you describe your character, Tani?

Lachman: She is Australian originally, but an islander. They’ve got this saying in Australia, “like a coconut”: brown on the outside and white on the inside. She’s got very Western values and understanding. She wants to get off the island and sees this influx of “terrorists” as a good thing. Outside the initial shock of what’s happened in the world, she’s pleased to have this presence. She’s tough and independent. I actually wore all of my own clothes in the pilot. I wore a dress to the audition and they’re like, “This is perfect, we want you to look exactly like you look now.”

Playboy.com: You played Suren on SyFy’s Being Human last season. What’s the best part of playing a vampire?

Lachman: It’s just fun to be that dark, to explore that shadow self. The makeup and stuff, very sticky, the blood was kind of ridiculous, but I love that stuff. I loved exploring that world and also to have vulnerabilities.

*Playboy.com: *Another cult hit you starred in was Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse. What was that like for you?

Lachman: That was by far one of the best experiences I’ve ever had, probably because it was one of my first TV shows. I made friends for life on that show. I feel so lucky to have had that experience.

*Playboy.com: *You have a new film coming up, Lust for Love. What is that about?

Lachman: It’s a comedy about a guy who’s not that good with women; it’s actually full of everyone I wanted to work with because I miss Dollhouse. [laughs] We decided to raise some money on Kickstarter and get the fans involved, which was such an interesting process. We filmed last year and it’s in post now. I’ve seen it about a dozen times and I don’t get tired of watching Fran (Kranz), but I’m in the film myself so I’m definitely tired of seeing me. [laughs]

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Playboy.com: Lightning Round:

Favorite City: Paris.

Favorite Drink: Whisky…Balvenie Scotch.

Food: Sushi…because I had it last night.

Shot: Tequila…it’s a very complicated process. The salt, then the lime, or the lime, then salt?

Guilty Pleasure: I do whatever I want, so nothing ever feels guilty!

Radio Song: I’m not going to sing it for you, mainly for your safety. It’s the Taylor Swift song, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.”

Secret Talent: I can really cook; I love to cook Italian food and Thai food.

Dream Car: It sounds obnoxious but I love Range Rovers. They’re so beautiful!

Embarrassing Moment: [Laughs] I tend to feel embarrassed often, I say very silly things. Actors: we have no shame so it’s hard to be embarrassed! Also, people always mispronounce my name.

Playboy.com: It’s pronounced “dee-chin,” right?

*Lachen: *Yes, that’s right. But I get “dee-kin” and “dike-in” — it’s horrible! And sometimes “like-in”! I don’t have the heart to correct people when they say it wrong because they’ll think I’m an asshole.

Playboy.com: What was your first Playboy?

Lachen: I was so little. I found a stack in the house somewhere, and my cousin and l would look through the pictures and be like, “This is amazing!” Ha! I think I was probably about four, maybe four and a half. I have a very good visual memory. I will always remember [the centerfold] had permed hair, and it was soft lying on her side. It was amazing to see something like that.

Though an interesting book I’m reading right now that Playboy readers might like is called Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships, which is an anthropological study of evolution of the sexes. It’s very interesting.

Last Resort airs Thursday at 8/7c on ABC. Follow Dichen on Twitter @DichenLachman


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