How ‘FBI’ Star Missy Peregrym Shaped Maggie’s Foster Mom Story Arc

“I’m so happy that they were open to expanding my character in this direction,” the actress tells TheWrap

Missy Peregrym as Special Agent Maggie Bell and Rose Decker as Ella Blake in "FBI"
Missy Peregrym as Special Agent Maggie Bell and Rose Decker as Ella Blake in "FBI" (CREDIT: Bennett Raglin/CBS)

This season on “FBI,” Missy Peregrym’s character Maggie Bell was already considering IVF to become a single mother, and, after the events of last week’s “Unforeseen” episode, she’s now the sole guardian to a late friend’s young daughter.

Ahead of Tuesday night’s episode, TheWrap spoke with Peregrym about the impetus for the story arc and how it allows the actress to show “more of my feminine maternal side.”

Peregrym, who is a mother of two in real life, discussed how seriously Maggie takes the duty of caring for Ella (Rose Decker) whose mother Jessica (Charlotte Sullivan) died unexpectedly after temporarily entrusting her child to her best friend.

TheWrap: Where did this motherhood story come from? Did you have input on this?

Missy Peregrym: I did. I was talking with [producer] Joe [Halpin] last year, and I really tried to come up with a way that I got to play more of my feminine maternal side. We know Maggie’s a badass. That’s great, but she’s also got other sides to her and I really wanted to explore that.

There’s so much richness in that dynamic and internal conflict over what’s a good mother. I mean, there’s so much pressure. I like the idea of depicting this moral conflict and also exploring what is the right thing for her to do and who Maggie is. Can we get to know Maggie in this situation? What does she really want in her life outside of work? I’m so happy that they were open to expanding my character in this direction.

How can Maggie balance her job and dealing with her own grief and taking care of Ella?

I love the storyline. It’s so beautifully complicated. It’s in Maggie’s blood, to take care [of people], right? If there’s a problem, she’s going to find the solution. And now, her job is potentially a serious issue for being a caretaker, because all Ella needs is someone to really show up and be there. 

And she can’t always be there because of work. It’s her instinct to always throw herself into dangerous situations and now she can’t do that wholeheartedly, because she has to be able to go home for Ella. 

Maggie has a nanny, but there’s no long-term plan right now. It’s just kind of day by day?

Yeah, there isn’t. I’m not really sure where it’s going. I know that things might get tricky down the line, in terms of legal issues. And what is the right thing to do? She loves Ella and wants to take care of her and to honor Jess’ request, but there’s a reality to her position in life. Just because this happened this way, doesn’t mean it’s the right thing for her.

Charlotte Sullivan as Jessica Blake and Missy Peregrym as Special Agent Maggie Bell in "FBI.
Charlotte Sullivan as Jessica Blake and Missy Peregrym as Special Agent Maggie Bell in “FBI.” (CREDIT: Bennett Raglin/CBS)

I’m assuming that Maggie is putting the IVF plan on hold, maybe forever, because of the situation.

Yeah, that was already going to be kind of tough to do, being a single mom and having a baby. And now having to be in the role of mother, it’s even more complicated and difficult. She’ll never be able to replace Jess. She’s filling a role that she doesn’t even know if she’s equipped to do.

In the past, when Maggie’s sister Erin (Adrienne Rose Bengtsson) was around, she always worried about her relapsing, and that led to a major conflict where Maggie dropped the ball on a case. Is that on Maggie’s mind right now, that taking care of Ella is going to pull her focus too much from work?

That’s such a painful relationship. Maggie is pretty on it with work, right? She’s good at figuring things out. And she feels fairly good about putting herself in situations where things could go in any direction. But with her sister, she’s upside-down. She can’t keep putting herself in a position to be heartbroken.

[Ideally], it could be her and her sister [taking care of Ella], but is that even a smart thing to do? This is the one place where she’s just a mess, because it’s so difficult. 

Do you think she’s going to turn to Jubal (Jeremy Sisto) since he’s always juggling taking care of his son with work?

I would love to see that. I would love to see how Maggie being in this position alters her conversations and dynamics with the people that she works with. Scola [John Boyd] just had a baby. He’s the other person who really puts himself in the line of fire every day; he could also be hurt and then the child loses his father. So, yeah, I hope Maggie can have these conversations. 

Do your own kids come to the set?

My 2-year-old Otis tries to come to work with me every day. He tells me, “I don’t want to go to school. I gotta come to work.” It doesn’t work that way. [Laughs] I don’t have anybody to look after him [on set] and he says, “I’ll be brave.” Oh, fine. Hopefully as they get older, they can come more and more.

“FBI” airs Tuesday nights on CBS at 8 p.m. ET/PT and streams the next day on Paramount+.


One response to “How ‘FBI’ Star Missy Peregrym Shaped Maggie’s Foster Mom Story Arc”

  1. Confused Avatar

    This interview doesn’t make sense. Missy’s son is 4. Her daughter is about to turn 2. What? 

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