"Always down for a strong female lead that deals with major life issues," says OITNB actress Rebecca Knox
'Orange Is the New Black' has the reputation of having one of the most expansive ensemble casts in television, with each season still managing to squeeze in a few more notable inmates. Tina Swope was apparently the first new character to be added to Season 6 of 'Orange Is the New Black' when it was announced, and actress Rebecca Knox, who plays the interesting role, spilled a bit about her role in the show in an interview with Meaww.
Aside from acting, Rebecca is businesswoman having created her own record label as well as her own Mezcal company, Doña Sarita.
Knox is an East Hampton native where she also helps run her family’s very famous White Sands Beach Hotel in The Hamptons. She has been previously featured in Hamptons Magazine last year in the influencer edition.
She’s basically a 25-year-old bad ass with an incredible story. Not only is she brilliant but she also grew up speaking multiple languages and is fluent in Spanish. Her Latina heritage is something that is often overlooked because of her fair skin with blonde hair but is a huge part of who she is.
Prior to getting cast on OITNB, Knox appeared in 'Return to Montauk' alongside Stellan Skarsgård (Mamma Mia!, Thor, and The Avengers). She appeared in a few short films, including 'Something About Wonder' and 'Thinking Inside the Box', as well as one in the works, 'Strangers at Night', and has also made one-episode appearances in shows like 'Bull' and 'A Crime to Remember'. Currently, the actress whose character has definitely become a fan favorite, is getting ready to film season 7.
How did you land the role of Tina Swope? Please walk us through the audition process?
I was called in to audition for a few different roles on the show before the role of Swope came along. I had a few auditions that day and I was exhausted. I decided walking into the audition room that I would just let loose and have fun. And so I did and the rest is history.
Tell us about your character? What was it like getting into the mind and skin of Tina?
She loves Oxy. She's tough. I did a ton of research about Oxy before I auditioned for the role and after I booked it. I wanted to understand the mindset of an addict and what the drug itself feels like. I also worked with my teacher Charlie Sandlan at the Maggie Flanigan Studio to deepen my work physically and emotionally.
Please share your experience on the set, what was the vibe like? Did you get along with your co-stars on the show?
It is different every day but it is always a thrill to be there. Everyone is friendly and I gotta say I love being on a set where the vast majority of cast members are women.
Did you approach the character of Tina on the go or did you prepare notes on how to go about the role?
I always prep in advance with my coach. It is always a priority for me when starting any job to be as prepared as possible before stepping on set.
If you had to play a different character on the same show, who would you ideally go for and why?
This is a hard question. I don’t know honestly. There are so many characters I love on the show, and they are all played so well by the cast. I think it would be fun to play Linda Ferguson- just to fully commit to a villain role. Beth (who plays Linda) is so lovely in person and it is awesome to see how she transforms herself for the role.
Can you give us a little sneak peek into what we can expect from the upcoming season of OITNB?
It might just be the best season yet! But that’s all I can say, hahaha!
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What is your career bucket list like?
I will probably make the move to LA at some point in the near future. I would love to be a Marvel villain, some character set in the 1920’s with a gun and great clothes, and I would love to work my way into more film- indie and beyond. I would also love to really sink my teeth into a character on a show and have the opportunity to start fresh with a cast. All to come! In the meantime- I’ll keep auditioning and writing my own material.
If there was something that you could have done differently in your personal and/or professional career, what would it be and why?
I have to say no. Sometimes I have thought to myself, where would I be now if I started acting when I was a child etc. But at the end of the day, I got into acting when it was the right time for me. I was working in music before and I learned valuable lessons from that time in my life- some of which even apply to my career now. There is no point in what I could have done, but rather what I do with my time now. I am grateful for where I’m at and it can only get better from here! Onward and upward.
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Get you a friend that looks at you the way Adeola looks at Swope #oitnbseason6
Have you ever had a fangirl moment on a show or appearance which has left a mark with you? Who are your idols?
I totally fangirled when I met Meryl Streep at a screening. She was so humble and kind. Someone of that caliber to be so down to earth was a pleasant surprise. I think that is important. I have a whole vision board plastered with my idols (its embarrassing) but to name a few — Meryl, Oprah, Viola Davis, Greta Gerwig for her unabashed honesty, Maya Angelou, Cate Blanchett, Helena Bonham Carter, the list goes on!
After playing the character of Tina, what kind of roles are you interested in? Is there any particular character/role you would want to give a shot?
I would love to fully immerse myself in a character. I am always down for a strong female lead that deals with major life issues. Oh, and I’d love to get the opportunity to tell Zelda Fitzgerald’s story from start to finish, no fluff. I am working on a screenplay about her as we speak.
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Behind the scenes with these baddies. What episode is everyone on?!