Netflix is diving into the fantasy world with Mako Mermaids, which tells the story of a trio of mermaids and their adventures in the modern world. One of those characters is played by rising actress Allie Bertram, who joined LA Fan Cultures Examiner for a recent e-mail interview to discuss bringing the international production to American audiences and playing in its unique universe.
“Our show is originally an Australian and German show, and then it airs on Netflix in other parts of the world,” she explained. “It is exciting that the show isn’t just airing on one network at one specific time, but it is airing around the world at all different times. It’s great to see different countries experience the show for the first time on my social media. This enables me to relive the episodes, because I am constantly being reminded via pictures and memes the fans are making on Instagram and Twitter!”
The series was a natural fit for her on many levels. “It has always been a dream of mine to live in a fantasy world. When I first got the audition for Mako Mermaids, I was thrilled at the possibility of becoming a mermaid,” Allie revealed.
“The show is based on three strong female characters, and I was drawn to the strength of these young women who are independent, strong-minded, and best friends,” she continued. “Mimmi, the character I play, is the most ‘by the books’ mermaid of the three. And sometimes all the pressure to be perfect gets them in trouble.”
Allie was not a regular in the first season, giving her the challenge of stepping into Mimmi’s fins when there was already a season of history behind her. “I was a little scared about coming into a show after a season had already passed,” she reflected. “Luckily, both [co-star] Isabel Durant and I were new, so there was a complete different dynamic than the previous season. Also, one of the previous actresses on the show was being converted to a mermaid, so technically there were three new mermaids and a new merman.
“There is a month of pre-production for the show, which mostly involves lots of swimming lessons for the mermaids and mermen in the cast. During this time we were all able to bond and establish great relationships, so when we got to filming, it felt like we had been together the whole time.”
Her favorite Mako episode is season three’s “The Job,” which is “entirely based on Mimmi getting a job at the marine park, and also meeting her first crush,” she told us. “It was such a fun episode to film because I got to swim with dolphins, which was a dream come true.”
This isn’t the first fantastic show that she’s been a part of; Allie has also guest starred on the DC Comics adaptation Smallville and USA’s cult hit comedy Psych. “I had so much fun working on Smallville, and it is such an iconic show to be part of. I would love to go back to the high school and work more at the Daily Torch,” she reflected.
“I also had a great time working on Psych; however most of the episode I spent running. It would be nice to go back and not have to spend the whole day running!”
She’s come a long way from being the runner-up on the Canadian version of So You Think You Can Dance, and told us about making the move from dancer to actress. “I had kept my dance up for a while, appearing as a dancer in things such as Sucker Punch, and Holiday Spin,” Allie said. “However, I am more drawn to acting roles and would like to completely transition from dancer to actor. I can still dance if I need to, but I think of myself as an actor who can dance now.”
Mako Mermaids is now streaming on Netflix.