Exclusive interview with Amy Okuda

Foto: Amy Okuda - Copyright: James DiPietro
Amy Okuda
© James DiPietro

April 21, 2016 | Amy Okuda was born in California and in 2015 a wish of hers came true. She was offered the part of Catherine Hapstall in the Shondaland TV show "How to Get Away with Murder", where she plays a young woman who is accused of being responsible of her parents death. In our interview Amy Okuda kindly answers our questions about her character and her experiences on the sets of "The Guild" and "The Man in the High Castle".

You have been playing many parts in different shows. What was it like being at these sets especially compared to being on "How to Get Away with Murder", in which you are recurring?

One of the awesome things about being on "How to Get Away with Murder" was that I got to play a character for a longer period of time. I haven't really done that since I was on "The Guild". But the fun part of being an actor is that every set is different, and it's a completely different experience. It's like the first day at a new school every time, which is like, frightening and super exciting at the same time.

What is working with Viola Davis like? Maybe a little bit intimidating?

It's hard to explain. I still can't believe that I worked with her! I found out I booked this part, and in like 16 hours, I was on set shooting my first scene with her. It was crazy. I'm a bit of a crier when it comes to meeting people I admire, so I'm just proud of myself that I didn't cry when I met her.

What's your fondest memory from working on "How to get Away with Murder"?

I really loved going to the Premier Party. It was a party for all three of Shonda Rhimes' shows ("Grey's Anatomy", "Scandal" and " How to Get Away With Murder") and I just loved being there and seeing all the actors from my favorite shows. Both of my managers were there too and it was just really nice to celebrate with them.

How did you like the turn of events at the end of season 2? What did you think who the murderer was?

I was hoping that Catherine was the murderer, but the backstory I built for Catherine ended up being pretty accurate. The whole time I was playing that she was innocent, had an idea that Caleb Hapstall was involved in the murders, but she was covering for him. The one part I missed was her being in love with him! In my mind, Catherine was just protecting him because he's the only family she has left.

How different was your experience on "How to Get Away with Murder" compared to "The Guild"?

Super different! From the size of the production, to the amount of people involved, to like how long the production is, etc etc. Also "The Guild" was a comedy and "How To Get Away With Murder" is the furthest thing from a comedy! But I did "The Guild" for 6 years, and there still isn't a project where I feel like the cast and crew are my family. They'll always be my first work family, but hopefully not my last! I hope that soon I'll be on a show that goes as long, if not longer!

Before you got the role of Catherine Hapstall you also had a part in "Grey's Anatomy", another show of Shonda Rhimes. Are you a fan of Shondaland yourself?

Such a huge fan. "Grey's Anatomy" was the first show I wanted to be on when I became an actor. I always had a dream that I would play a part where McDreamy (Patrick Dempsey) had to cure me of a crazy disease and we would fall in love. When I actually booked "Grey's Anatomy" I wasn't the patient, and my character and McDreamy didn't fall in love, but I got to work with Patrick Dempsey so I got pretty darn close!

In your blog you have been sharing pictures of your cute dog Lola. Did she ever help you land a role?

Yes, Lola is my acting coach. I only run lines with her. So she's responsible for every role that I've ever done. (Kidding)

#nationaldogday #maltipoo #dogsofinstagram #dogs thanks @mellylee_ for these adorable photos🐶💖

Ein von Amy Okuda (@amyokuda) gepostetes Foto am

What was working on "The Man in the High Castle" like? What did you find most fascinating about the alternate reality?

It was great! I loved being in Vancouver. It was the first time going out of town to shoot something and it was super fun. The other cast members on the show were so welcoming and we went out and hung out so that was also really cool. I can't wait to watch Season 2!

If you could go back in time which moment would you like to relive?

Middle School. All I wanted was to be popular, and I feel like I wasted so much energy trying to perfect my social life. Middle school is where all that started for me so I would go back with the knowledge that none of that matters.

You are also into sports, right? Do you still play basketball? Do you have a favorite team?

I've always been a huge Laker fan. Hard time to be a Laker fan right now, and I haven't stopped crying since Kobe's last game, but I'm trying to stay strong! I don't play basketball anymore, haven't in years, but sometimes I'll go shoot around at a park or something. But I still love watching!

You have a degree in cinematic arts. How do your experiences come into play in your job as an actor?

It was nice to study film theory, production, and other aspects of the industry before leaping into pursuing acting. I kind of understand both sides of the business, and I think that's always helpful. Also, college is just really fun and everyone should do it.

Do you have future projects or dream jobs you can tell us about?

My two favorite shows right now are "You're the Worst" on FXX and "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" on Netflix. So those two would definitely be my dream job. I just worked with Aya Cash who is on "You're the Worst" and I was having a mild freakout every day on set (a happy freakout).

Since myFanbase is an online magazine about U.S. television shows, we would like to know what your favorite shows are?

Okay, so "You're The Worst" and "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt", which I already mentioned. Right now I also love "Better Call Saul", "Marvel's Jessica Jones", "Master of None", and this is an oldie but I'm rewatching "30 Rock" and it's just like, the best show ever. "The People vs. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story" was also amazing! I'm sad that it's over.

Thank you so much for making time for us, Amy, we wish you all the best for your future!


Marie Florschütz - myFanbase

Note: © myFanbase 2016 - The interview is exclusive to myFanbase and may not be published on other websites or the like. You may share the first two questions (up to 180 words) if you link back to this site. Translations other than English and German may be posted with full credit including the link to this site.