But the actress is well-known to TV fans for other roles as well — in particular her part as madam Joanie Stubbs on David Milch’s beautiful, brilliant HBO Western Deadwood, which ran from 2004 to 2006 and was taken from us too soon, at the end of its third season.
The gigantic, sprawling series — which included dozens upon dozens of important characters by its final season — is perhaps my favorite ever made. So when Dickens and her Fear the Walking Dead co-stars Colman Domingo and Frank Dillane joined me on the latest episode of my podcast, I Think You’re Interesting, I had to ask her about the persistent rumors that Milch has written a script for a reunion movie that he and the Deadwood cast all hope HBO will make.
(Milch has said that he always wanted the original series to feature the historically accurate burning of Deadwood, South Dakota, followed by the residents gathering together to rebuild, but he never got there. I have no inside knowledge but have always thought a reunion movie or miniseries might cover this ground.)
But Dickens didn’t just confirm the rumors — she told me she’s read the script.
“I loved it,” she said. “It brought tears to my eyes just to hear those voices again, so perfectly. It was funny at times and sad and painful and beautiful, really beautiful.”
Dickens said that Milch himself sent it to her to read; she also reiterated earlier reports in which her fellow Deadwood star Ian McShane (who played the saloon owner Al Swearengen, one of the best TV characters ever conceived) said the script had been delivered to HBO.
“It’s in their hands now,” Dickens said.
For further tales of working on Deadwood; discussion of a big, big moment in Fear the Walking Dead’s season three premiere; and a whole bunch of great stories from Dickens, Domingo, and Dillane about shooting Fear the Walking Dead — which happens to be the only major American TV series shot on location in Mexico — listen to the full episode.
To hear more interviews with fascinating people from the world of arts and culture, from powerful showrunners to web series creators to documentary filmmakers, check out the I Think You’re Interesting archives.