You Can’t Take My Daughter, starring Lyndsy Fonseca and Kirstie Alley, will air July 5 at 6 p.m. as part of Lifetime’s Independence Day weekend marathon. The marathon features popular throwback titles to help continue the celebration of the 30th anniversary of Lifetime Original Movies. You Can’t Take My Daughter first premiered earlier in 2020.
HollywoodLife talked EXCLUSIVELY with Lyndsy about taking on the role of Amy Thompson, a vibrant law student who is attacked and raped by someone she met once. She soon finds out she’s pregnant and keeps the baby, despite the fact that her rapist continues to harass her. Six years later, the man who raped her finds her and sues for custody of her daughter. The movie is inspired by the real-life Analyn Megison. Lyndsy opened up about speaking to Analyn about the film, how this role impacted her, and more.
Did you know anything about Analyn Megison before taking on this role?
Lyndsy Fonseca: No, I didn’t. I didn’t even know what a crazy, horrible experience so many mothers are facing in the court system in general. I didn’t realize that this was a problem legally, and I didn’t know about Analyn personally, either. So when I read the story I was quite shocked by a few things. I was shocked by the fact that it was a true story, but then also that Lifetime was brave enough to tell the story and how beautifully written the script was. I was really just impressed by them as a network and the stories they were choosing to tell.
What kind of research did you do for the role?
Lyndsy Fonseca: I did some research on other women and what they have been through, and I did some research on Analyn Megison today. I spoke with her on the phone and asked her some questions. I was a little nervous at first because I really didn’t want to create any triggers for her. This was such a delicate story and so personal of things that she had been through. I had to sort of gain her trust and let her know how serious I was about honoring her story. She was so lovely. She was just an open book, and I was so appreciative of her willingness to collaborate with me. We spoke a lot about things, but I just wanted it to be as real as possible. I wasn’t going to imitate her because it wasn’t things that I could know how she was, but we spoke about what was real experiences and stuff. I just tried to use that information and then bring in my own emotion to it. It was nerve-wracking, but it was bigger than me. It was a story that needed to be told.
How did it feel to get the opportunity to speak with Analyn for the movie?
Lyndsy Fonseca: It was really special because she knew that it was about other women who are going through this right now, too. Tori [Garrett], our director, was so intimately involved with the story and the script. She and the people of Lifetime created a very female-forward, safe space to tell this story.
As a woman and a mother, how did this role impact you?
Lyndsy Fonseca: I definitely think being a mother impacted me in a different way than maybe if I had done it before becoming a mother. It’s just a much deeper sense of protection of my child and what that would feel like. I also just feel very blessed that Lifetime created this story to be told because, like myself, now I’m aware of the battle that women have gone through and are still going through today. This is about bringing awareness to the topic. I’ve gotten so many messages about the film being like, “I had no idea that this was happening.” I’m just so in awe of the fact that Analyn went through this and then ended up really dedicating her life to support and fight the judiciary system to protect women in this situation. She’s not living her life as a victim, but really creating change for others, which is so inspiring.
On another note, you were cast earlier this year in the Turner Hooch reboot. Is there any update on that?
Lyndsy Fonseca: Actually, I spoke with Josh Levy and our line producer yesterday. Things are moving forward, and they’re working very hard on the production side with all the protocols and making sure everything is as safe as possible with the new COVID standards and the SAG-AFTRA rules. It’s a whole new world. They’re just doing their best and working with the Canadian government because we’re shooting in Vancouver and just sorting out all the logistics. They’re hoping to start shooting in September, but that hasn’t been finalized yet. So we’re just sort of waiting every day for more information on how everyone can do this safely, how we can travel, and then quarantine in Canada. There are all these moving pieces for production. The good thing is that I think the cast is rounding up itself right now and everything. I’m so excited to work with Josh Peck again, and the writers have been incredible. They’ve been writing all the scripts ahead of time.