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Interview: Jamie Gray Hyder

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Many people have the dream to go to Hollywood and become a big star. What most don’t realize is that it takes a lot of work and dedication to make it in Tinsel town. You have to have confidence and believe in yourself. One person who doesn’t have a problem with any of that is actress Jamie Gray Hyder. Her breakout role was playing Danielle on the hit HBO series True Blood. Originally scheduled for two episodes, the producers of the series enjoyed her work so much; she ended up being on the show for its fifth and sixth seasons.

Currently she is one of the stars of the USA Network series Graceland. She plays Luciano Solano, the sister to Carlito, who runs the profitable and dangerous Solano cartel. Although her character is trying to live a normal life, she keeps getting pulled back into the family business.

Jamie’s talents don’t stop there. She’s a classically trained singer, has appeared in numerous music videos and lent her voice talents to the video game Killzone: Shadow Fall as Echo. She was kind enough to sit down with us to talk about Graceland, what working on True Blood meant to her career and what she would say to up and coming actors.

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Interview: Octavius J. Johnson

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Octavius J. Johnson is definitely someone you can label as one of Hollywood’s young rising stars. The multi-talented actor is also an accomplished singer and rapper. All of these talents are put to use in his current role as Marvin Gaye Washington on the hit Showtime series Ray Donovan. Octavius has made appearances on television series such as the CBS drama Intelligence and in films such as Make It Happen, Coldwater and the upcoming film 59 Seconds.

Octavius sat down with the Pop Culture Principle to talk about how has character has changed from season one, what it’s like working with Jon Voight and Liev Schreiber and how playing a rapper has inspired him to incorporate rap into his music.

Pop Culture Principle – What can you tell us about the character you portray Marvin Gaye Washington?

Octavius J. Johnson – Marvin is one of the smoothest kids from Compton you could ever meet. He’s really talented, mischievous and suave. He’s a great extension of the cast and very charismatic. Marvin is curious about everything and I love playing him. It’s been a blast to work with Live and Jon on the show and even doing table reads with the cast has been amazing.

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Interview: Aya Cash

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The FX Network is no stranger to in your face comedy. Shows like It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and The League definitely pushed the boundaries on cable television while still being funny. The latest offering from the network is You’re the Worst. Created by Stephen Falk, the series follows Jimmy and Gretchen, two self-destructive and self-involved individuals who meet at a wedding and attempt to start a relationship. One of the stars who bring these characters to life is actress Aya Cash.

Aya has guest starred on series such as Law & Order, We Are Men and The Newsroom. She was one of the main cast members on the short-lived, but hilarious comedy Traffic Light. On the big screen, she appeared in the films The Wolf of Wall Street, Deception and Begin Again. She was kind enough to sit down with us to discuss her new series You’re the Worst.

Pop Culture Principle – When you originally read the script, what was it about the script that made you want to be part of the project?

Aya Cash – First and foremost, it was the funniest thing I had ever read for television. I thought it was really smart and really funny. I had actually met Stephen Falk the year before and really liked him and knew he was a really lovely human being. I definitely wanted to work with Stephen. I thought the script was brilliant and I was thinking that if I am a part of it, then people will think I’m brilliant too!

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Interview: Vanessa Marcil

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Emmy®-Award winning actress Vanessa Marcil is no stranger to the Hallmark Brand. In 2009, she starred in the Hallmark Channel Original movie The Nanny Express. Five years later, she is back starring in a brand new original movie entitled Stranded in Paradise. Vanessa Marcil plays Tess, a driven executive whose disastrous business trip to a beautiful island turns into an unexpected new beginning. Stranded In Paradise, based on Lori Copeland's novel of the same name, will premiere on Hallmark Channel, Saturday, August 9 (9 p.m. ET/PT, 8C).

Vanessa was kind enough to sit down with us to discuss why she became involved with the project, how close to home her character is and what message she would like viewers to take away from the movie.

Pop Culture Principle – What was it about the script for Stranded in Paradise that made you want to be part of this project?

Vanessa Marcil – I am such a big self-proclaimed nerd. I started out in the theater at age 5, so I am very into characters. When I read a character and it resonates with me in one way or another, then I know it’s hitting something inside of me. I was reading this script and it had no attachment to it at the time. It came from a book that my older sister loved. When I read it, I was completely moved by it because it’s basically my sister.

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Interview: Dylan Neal

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You say the name Dylan Neal and many hits series come to mind. Some of you may know him from his long run on the soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful. Some may know him as Doug Winter on the hit series Dawson’s Creek. Most recently he appeared on the CW popular series Arrow. Dylan has built quite the resume and along the way, continues to be one of the most sought after actors today.

Currently he stars in The Hallmark Channel original series Cedar Cove which just had its season two premiere. Dylan plays Jack Griffith, the new editor of the local newspaper, the Cedar Cove Chronicle, and love interest of Judge Olivia Lockhart played by Andie MacDowell. Dylan was kind enough to sit down with us and talk about his character, the Hallmark brand and what fans can look forward to in season two.

Pop Culture Principle – Can you tell us what Cedar Cove is about?

Dylan Neal – It’s about this beautiful Pacific Northwest town called Cedar Cove. The way the audience comes into the series from the beginning is kind of through my character Jack Griffith. Jack is a big city reporter from Philadelphia who is a recovering alcoholic. He had a family, a successful career and lost it all because of the drinking. The only job that he could find is running this very small town newspaper which is pretty much a one man shop. He’s pretty much a fish out of water; a big city guy in this quirky, quaint little town.

What really catches his eye is the town’s judge Olivia Lockheart played by Andie MacDowell. You have these two characters that are circling each other looking at each other trying to figure out what each one is doing there because they both don’t fit the mold of everyone else that is in town. This fun relationship develops between them and during the course of the season, Jack finds out that he really does love this place and it is home, despite how he thought he viewed himself. So, the show follows the citizens and the relationships in Cedar Cove and at the heart of it is the relationship between Andie’s character and mine.

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Interview: Meghan Ory

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The Memory Book is a new Hallmark Movie Channel original that will premiere on Saturday July 26th at 9/8c. The movie follows Chloe (Meghan Ory), a budding photographer who comes from a family of failed romances. At a local flea market, she stumbles upon an old photo album from the 1970s, chronicling the ideal romance of a happy couple played by Art Hindle and Adrienne Barbeau.

Unable to find her own "true love," she sets out to find the couple in the album and prove that true love exists. Along the way, she meets Gabe Sinclair (Luke Macfarlane), a mysterious, but charming bartender, who seizes the opportunity to join Chloe's mission and soon finds himself falling in love with her. Thus we go on an adventure with Chloe and Gabe as they set out to find who the people are in the memory book and at the same time, they both learn something about each other.

Meghan Ory was kind enough to sit down with the Pop Culture Principle to discuss her character Chloe, the adventure her character embarks on and how she too has her own memory book.

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Interview: Kathleen Robertson

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On June 9th, TNT will debut its latest drama Murder in the First. Created by Steven Bochco, the series follows Inspector Hildy Mulligan (Kathleen Robertson) and Inspector Terry English (Taye Diggs) as they try to solve a case that spans across an entire season.

Kathleen Robertson is no stranger to the big and small screen. She recently finished a successful run on the Kelsey Grammer series Boss and has as an upcoming arc on the A&E series Bates Motel. She also appeared on the long running hit series Beverly Hills, 90210. On the big screen, she has appeared in films such as Scary Movie 2, Control and Beautiful.

Kathleen was nice enough to sit down with us to talk about her new series, working with Taye Diggs and what fans can look forward to with the rest of the season.

Pop Culture Principle – What was it that attracted you to this project?

Kathleen Robertson – Steven Bochco was a huge reason for me wanting to do the show and I was really excited to be a part of the project.

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Interview: Milena Govich

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MTV recently premiered its new series Finding Carter. The series follows Carter, a young girl who has a perfect life with her single mother Lori, until a police bust at a party reveals that Lori had abducted Carter as a child. Now, Carter returns to her biological family and must navigate through her new life whilst vowing to be reunited with Lori. The character of Lori is played by the multi-talented Milena Govich.

Milena should be no stranger to fans of film, television and theater. She’s had successful runs on Broadway in shows such as Cabaret and The Boys from Syracuse. On television, she starred on series such as Conviction, Rescue Me and K-ville. As Detective Nina Cassady, she was the first and only female detective on the original Law & Order. On the big screen she has appeared in films such as Sordid Things and A Novel Romance.

Today Milena sits down with the Pop Culture Principle to talk with us about her new series Finding Carter, her work on Law & Order and the advice she would give to up and coming actors.

Pop Culture Principle – You are currently starring on the series Finding Carter. Can you tell us what the show is about?

Milena GovichFinding Carter follows a 16 year old girl who has been raised by her single mom. They are best friends, do everything together and are extremely happy. Carter gets arrested for something silly with her friends and they discover that she was actually kidnapped when she was three years old. So, the mother that she has always known and loved is actually her kidnapper. She is sent back to live with her biological family whom she has never met or ever heard of. The show focuses on her struggle to assimilate into the new family or escape back to her mom.

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Interview: Amy Gumenick

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In a short period of time, actress Amy Gumenick has built an impressive resume of film and television credits. The Swedish born actress graduated from the University California at Santa Barbara in 2008, earning a BFA in theatre with an emphasis in acting. She’s made memorable appearances on television shows such as Grimm, Rules of Engagement, Grey’s Anatomy and Castle. She became a fan favorite playing Mary Winchester on the hit series Supernatural. In a memorable performance, Amy took on the role of Natalee Holloway in the Lifetime television movie Natalee Holloway.

Currently she can be seen on the AMC hit series Turn which was just renewed for a second season. Amy was kind enough to sit down with us to discuss Turn, being a part of the Supernatural universe, diversity in her work and gives some sound advice for those looking to become actors.

Pop Culture Principle – Can you tell us what Turn is about?

Amy Gumenick – Turn is a Revolutionary War drama that tells the story of George Washington’s first spy ring. It gives a closer, more in-depth look into the people who formed the United States of America and what it is today. The writers have done an amazing job at capturing the historical accuracy of that time period, and making it accessible and interesting to a broader audience by their own level of drama. In doing so, it just doesn’t attract the history buffs out there but is enjoyable, entertaining and educational for everyone, regardless of what you know about the Revolutionary War. There have been lots of films that have tried to capture that. There are bits and pieces that we learn about in school and that we see in the media, but Turn gives more of an up close and personal, behind-the-scenes view of what that time period was for our country.

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Interview - Pascale Hutton

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Canadian born actress Pascale Hutton is definitely carving out her place in Hollywood. The Gemini and Leo award winning actress has spent the last several years building an impressive resume in film and television. She’s had memorable roles on hit shows such as Sanctuary, Flashpoint and Intelligence. She has also had guest appearances on series such as Supernatural, Fringe and Royal Pains.

Pascale starred as Krista Ivarson on the hit Canadian series Arctic Air which ran three seasons on the CBC network. On the big screen she’s starred in films such as Ginger Snaps 2: Unleashed, A Simple Curve and The Art of War II: Betrayal.

A graduate of the University of Alberta in Edmonton, she currently stars on the hit Hallmark series When Calls The Heart playing the somewhat misunderstood Rosemary LeVeaux. Pascale was kind enough to sit down with us to talk about her current series, playing strong, independent characters and what she likes to do to relax.

Pop Culture Principle - You recently worked on When Calls the Heart. How was that experience?

Pascale Hutton – It was great. I love that character so much. It’s very different from what I normally play. I had just wrapped season three of Arctic Air where I play a very strong, forthright female character. She is very confident, very decisive and keeps her emotions very close to her heart. So, to go from that to When Calls The Heart which is so light and full and the character is larger than life was such a welcome change. You know, you play the same types of characters for a while it’s fun to shake things up and that is what this character was for me on When Calls the Heart.

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