The real life Alex Vause is ready to set the record straight when it comes to her portrayal on the hit show Orange is the New Black. With the popularity of the show growing by the day — Netflix has already ordered a fourth season — many fans are being drawn to the real story that inspired the series.
The female prison series is based on the memoirs of Piper Kerman (Piper Chapman, played by Taylor Schilling), who spent a few months in prison for drug-related charges that stemmed from her being an unknowing drug mule for her girlfriend at the time.
With that in mind, Cleary Wolters, the real life Vause (portrayed by Laura Prepon), recently sat down with HuffPost Live and discussed her relationship with Piper Kerman.
“I’m flattered that they picked out me in her life as such an interesting, charismatic character that they had to make a whole backstory about me,” Wolters stated. “I never imagined I’d be Donna from That 70s Show. When I watch that part of the series, I watch it as a viewer, I don’t say ‘that’s my life.'”
Wolters added that there are some details in the Orange is the New Black, like the glasses Alex Vause wears, that are true to her story. However, there are a few things that the show didn’t get right. Wolter, who spent a total of 94 months in prison after being convicted on drug smuggling charges, revealed that a major difference between the show and her experience in prison is the sex.
“There is sex occurring, but it’s not happening in the showers without a shower curtain. If you get caught having sex, you go to … solitary confinement. I never saw it. In fact, I might have stayed had that been the case.”
She also claims in a separate interview with People magazine that the show does not really show just how harsh prison life can be.
“You become invisible,” she says. “You are an object. You are not a human being. People won’t even look you in the eye – it’s these very subtle things that degrade you slowly and completely. Everything that makes you ‘you’ is taken from you.”
“If prison life were really like they depicted in the show, there would be a line to get in,” says Wolters
Keep up with the story of Piper Chapman and Alex Vause when Season 3 of the Netflix hit Orange is the New Black is released on June 12, 2015.