May 06, 2012 1:31pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Jane Seymour Talks On-Set Bonding, James Bond
Known for a slew of famous roles in her four-decade career, it's still almost impossible to bring up Jane Seymour without also thinking of her breakout role as Solitaire in 1972's Live and Let Die.
The James Bond franchise, recently celebrating its 50th anniversary, is now barely visible in the actress' rear view mirror, but the ways it informed her career are something she still feels today.
"It was a great experience, but after that I just realized I wanted to go back into the theater," Seymour, who stars in the new Hallmark Movie Channel film Lake Effects, tells The Hollywood Reporter. "I didn't really want to run three paces behind a man with a gun."
That decision -- which led to roles Hamlet, Macbeth and Amadeus, among others -- is something Seymour says a lot of people still question. "I think a lot of people thought that I failed by doing that, but I was looking at the big picture," she says. "It was just ridiculously exciting at the time. I was just 20 years old."
Most recently, Seymour tackles a widow in Hallmark's Lake Effects -- a film that came together under distinctly non-Hollywood circumstances.
"When I got there I realized it was funded by local people," she says of the Virginia shoot. "We were all given people’s homes to stay in, and local retirees would drive us to and from set and local restaurants donated their food and on it went. There was a wonderful sense of camaraderie about it."
Seymour will next be seen in Austenland, a romantic comedy about a woman (Keri Russell) who travels to an English amusement park for women obsessed with Jane Austen.
"I play the awful woman who runs the place," she says, "and I'm completely wrong about everything... this absurd concept, this whole thing, It's quite funny."
Austenland, which marks Twilight author Stephenie Meyer's producing debut of non-authored material, will likely enter festival circuit later this year.
"She's unbelievable," Seymour says of Meyer. "She was very hands on. In fact, so were all of the women in that movie. Shannon Hale wrote it. Jerusha Hess directed. It was actually nothing but women."
Lake Effects airs Sunday, at 8 p.m. ET, on Hallmark Movie Channel.