Gossip Girl’s Lyne Renée also plays a General Witch on Motherland: Fort Salem

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Lyne Renée (right) plays a general witch on the TV show FreeForm Motherland: Fort Salem.

David Bukach / Freeform Television

This story is part of I’m so obsessed (subscribe here), our podcast featuring interviews with actors, artists, celebrities and creative types about their work, careers and current obsessions.

As I speak with actress Lyne Renée on a Zoom video call for CNET’s I’m So Obsessed podcast, I’m surprised by her thoughtfulness, passion, and smoothness. She is best known for playing General Sarah Adler, a witch and warlord, in the TV series FreeForm Motherland: Fort Salem. The show takes place in an alternate reality where women rule the world and witches are used to fight terrorism. Renée says that her character is essentially George Washington and that it is crucial in making America what it is.

“I enter this world completely. I feel like a kid who can play, who can be free and who can build a character so far removed from who I am,” Renée said. “She exudes that confidence, that knowledge and that strength. And that turned out to be a big challenge. I really fought for her heart.”

Home: Fort Salem is currently in its second season, but Renée is not taking a break. She also stars as real estate mogul Helena Bergman in Gossip Girl’s upcoming HBO Max reboot. Helena and her bespoke designer dresses couldn’t be more different than General Adler. Renée said entering the set was like stepping into a fairy tale.

Before Gossip Girl or Motherland: Fort Salem, Renée appeared in films and shows such as Wrath of Man, The Meyerowitz Stories, Madam Secretary, Here Lies, and Love at First Kill. And during our conversation, she discusses working with Guy Richie, painting a portrait of his co-star Benedict Cumberbatch that he actually displayed in his house, and what it was like growing up in Belgium with a mother who was a painter.

You can watch Motherland: Fort Salem Tuesday evenings on FreeForm TV. Gossip Girl will air from July 8 on HBO Max. You can subscribe to I’m So Obsessed on your favorite podcast app. In each episode, Connie Guglielmo or I meet an artist, actor or creator to learn more about the work, career and current obsessions.


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