The new CBS series Tracker has become a breakout hit for the network. So much so that CBS has already given the greenlight for a second season of the Justin Hartley led series.

This Sunday, March 24th, Tracker will air its sixth episode titled Lexington. What makes this episode so special is that Hartley’s wife, the wonderfully talented Sofia Pernas will be guest starring in the episode.

We are sure Sofia Pernas is a name that many of you know. She starred in the soap opera The Young & the Restless, as well as appearing in shows such as NCIS, Leverage, The Brave, Jane the Virgin and the revived series Quantum Leap. One of her most recent project was starring in two seasons of the wildly underappreciated series Blood & Treasure opposite Matt Barr.

We had the chance to sit down with Sofia to talk about her upcoming role opposite her husband in Tracker, how she prepared for the role, what it was like working on a soap opera, her thoughts on the cancellation of Blood & Treasure and what advice she has for up and coming actors.

Pop Culture Principle – You will appear in the upcoming Tracker episode Lexington. Can you tell us about your character Billie Matalon and how she fits in the world of Colter Shaw and Tracker?

Sofia Pernas – Billie is a pretty big monkey wrench that gets thrown into this job, and it’s always fun playing the proverbial monkey wrench. She doesn’t really fit into his world so much as she crash lands into it, which is why Colter is pretty…well, wholly unamused when she makes her first cheeky appearance. She transitioned careers when she met Colter – started off as an assistant at a lower level firm, then became his protege and now she’s a fellow reward seeker in her own right who only goes after the more high paying jobs. Hey, a girl’s gotta eat.

Pop Culture Principle – We’ve seen Colter Shaw be a character who is in control and really doesn’t let anything bother him, but will we get to see another side of him because of their past?

Sofia Pernas – Yes! I think that’s the beauty of this episode. The stakes are lower because we’re looking for a missing racehorse (there’s still lots of danger though, never fear!) but we get to see this vulnerable side of Colter that he keeps pretty aggressively under lock and key.

Pop Culture Principle – When working with your husband Justin Hartley in this episode, do you both sit down and go over the script before the shoot or do you like to keep it loose, not talk much about it and let things happen spontaneously when you are on set and shooting?

Sofia Pernas – Yeah, we do sit down and go over it especially with heavy dialogue days, which was pretty much every day with this episode. Really getting the lines down pat so we could play and improvise with whatever happened on the day was our goal. So I guess we did a hybrid of both questions you asked? Haha. We just said the words aloud and then let the moments happen organically on set the next day. Like you said, keepin’ it loose.

Pop Culture Principle – With Tracker already being renewed for a second season and depending on the outcome of the episode you guest star, do you hope you will appear in future episodes of Tracker?

Sofia Pernas – Yeah! 100%, Billie’s comin’ back. Monkey wrenches always do. 🙂

Pop Culture Principle – You recently finished two seasons of the series Blood & Treasure. When did you find out that the series would not be picked up for a third season and were you surprised? Did you see the writing on the wall?

Sofia Pernas – I wasn’t really surprised. If I’m not mistaken, I think our show will probably be the last of its kind in that respect. I’ll always be grateful for all the memories and places I got to see because of the show, it was a one in a lifetime kind of experience. Lexi was so fun to play, and of course being in a British accent that consistently was a dream. Lot of challenges but a helluva ride.

Pop Culture Principle – Having served eight years in the military myself, I tend to really love shows that deal with the military and operatives and so on. Although it only lasted one season, I really enjoyed The Brave. Can you talk a little bit about your work on that series and preparing for the role of Hannah Rivera?

Sofia Pernas – Oh, that role was such a trip. I loved Hannah. My dear friend, Dean Georgaris, created that series and he really knocked it out of the park – not to mention the pilot filmed in Morocco, which is where I’m from, so it really felt like a stars aligning moment. We were gun trained by a former navy seal, Mikhal Vega, who is such a gangster in every way. We did a loooot of shooting. Tons. He really emphasized gun safety and trigger discipline, and all of that really lends itself to looking legitimate on screen and giving respect to what you and other service members do so effortlessly. So that training was so indispensable and really helped with Lexi, actually.

Pop Culture Principle – You also did fifty episodes of the soap opera The Young and the Restless. We’ve heard horror stories about the amount of dialogue you have to learn when shooting an episode. Was there a lot of pressure working in that medium and how helpful was it preparing you for your later roles in film and television?

Sofia Pernas – I always say working on soaps is a bit of a sink or swim situation – all the lines for sure, but also the fly by scene study will get ya if you’re not thus prepared. It helped immensely with every job I got after that. Any time there was ever a time crunch, and it’s Hollywood – you’re always fighting the day – so being able to memorize lines quickly and get that out of the way so I could take apart the scene is all thanks to my time on Young and the Restless.

Pop Culture Principle – As someone who is carving out her own path in this industry, which can be a very tough industry, what piece of advice would you give to someone who is thinking about becoming an actor?

Sofia Pernas – Oh man. Honestly, in the immortal words of Dory, just keep swimming. That phrase just works perfectly for this industry. Don’t listen to any hate or naysaying, pay no mind to the constant rejection, and just keep swimming. The right role will find you – it’s just about honing your craft, and in my experience, preparedness will always find opportunity.

Pop Culture Principle – Do you have any other upcoming projects that you can tell us about?

Sofia Pernas – I do! You can catch me in Sonic 3, which will be coming out this year. Can’t say much about it other than it was thoroughly entertaining. Loved every bit of my time on that set.


A huge thank you to Sofia Pernas for taking the time to talk with us. Sofia’s episode of Tracker airs this Sunday, March 24th at 8/7c on CBS!

**All photos courtesy of Michael Courtney/Ed Araquel/CBS**

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