Jane Seymour is probably best-known for playing Dr. Michaela Quinn on the CBS dramatic series Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, for six seasons in the 1990s, followed by several Dr. Quinn TV movies. But her first breakthrough role was as the psychic priestess Solitaire in the 1973 James Bond film, Live and Let Die. The British actress now appears in the second season of the Netflix series The Kominsky Method (premiering Oct. 25).
Seymour can play sultry, scheming, funny, romantic, maternal, and more, and she has worked widely in both big-budget and independent fare. She receives a lifetime achievement award Oct. 18 from the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, where her career will be celebrated with a screening of Somewhere in Time, a 1980 time-travel romance in which she starred with Christopher Reeve.
Seymour answered a few questions from Pasatiempo in advance of the film festival.
Pasatiempo: How does it feel to be given a lifetime achievement award from a grassroots film festival in the high desert?
Jane Seymour: I feel very honored, though I hope it’s not the end of my life. I hope I have a bit more to add, in terms of achievement. I love that part of the world, too, and I plan to spend a little extra time there when I come to the festival.
Pasa: Have you ever shot a movie in New Mexico?
Seymour: Yes. We shot Saige Paints the Sky, the American Girl Doll movie, in Santa Fe [in 2013].
Pasa: What are you most proud of in your career?
Seymour: I mean, obviously Dr. Quinn has to be up there because I did it for such a long time and it was such a meaningful project. It was very much ahead of its time. There was a woman in the lead and it was dealing with lots of issues that we’re, sadly, still dealing with today — like immigration, pollution, and different cultures and belief systems. I also loved War and Remembrance [a 1988-1989 TV miniseries]. I thought that was a very special piece, especially for me because both my parents were in World War II. My mother was in a Japanese camp for three-and-a-half years in Indonesia. In terms of film, Somewhere in Time was a classic romance. I love that movie. Every time I watch it, I realize it still works. I’ve done a number of movies that people have never seen, like Bereave  with Malcolm McDowell. It’s one of my better performances.
Pasa: What was it like working on Somewhere in Time?
Seymour: When I read the script, I fell madly in love with that story and wanted to play it more than life itself. Chris Reeve and I really bonded in that movie and became lifelong friends. The chemistry between Chris and I was very special, and it came across in the movie. There was just a magic about it. I loved the theme — the possibility that “the one” exists. You may not know that person, but you’ll find one another somewhere in time.
Pasa: What are your thoughts on being a woman of a certain age in Hollywood? You seem to be acting more than ever.
Seymour: I’m very fortunate. I started out when I was 17. After the Bond film, I got leading lady roles. Now I play character roles and it’s really fun … I can look completely different and play characters that are nothing like me. I kind of had to prove to people that I could be funny. ◀
▼ A Tribute to Jane Seymour: Somewhere in Time
▼ 7 p.m. Oct. 18
▼ Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 W. San Francisco St.
▼ $20; 505-988-1234, tickets.lensic.org