In our Q&A collection Last Call, we get all the way down to the underside of each last item with a few of our favourite celebs — from the final time they have been starstruck to the final track they listened to. This week, “Grease: Rise of the Pink Girls” star Tricia Fukuhara takes our name.
One factor about Tricia Fukuhara is that she will be able to hustle. Earlier than the actor was solid as Nancy in Paramount+’s “Rise of the Pink Ladies,” which launched its first season finale on June 1, she was working odd jobs in Los Angeles. “I had three jobs on the time,” she tells POPSUGAR of the interval when she was auditioning for the position. And he or she was actually on a shift on the Wizarding World of Harry Potter when she obtained the information she’d landed the half.
“It was my frog choir job on the Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” she says. “Throughout my lunch break, I obtained a name saying that I needed to do yet another audition. And I used to be freaking out as a result of I did not have something to put on. I got here in a hoodie and leggings, and Nancy would by no means put on that.” Outfit apart, she additionally did not have a pc — and actually anyplace to take a Zoom name from.
After securing a darkish workplace house in one of many buildings (and praying nobody would barge in), she logged into Zoom via her cellphone. “And that is once they advised me that I booked,” she says. Celebrations must wait. She hung up and returned to the frog choir, earlier than hustling over to Dodger Stadium for one other gig.
“It is an enormous win for my group, for my pals, my household, my assist system.”
Throughout that point in Fukuhara’s life, she turned a part of a group of up and coming actors who have been additionally struggling so arduous to make it, and she or he will get “emotional” now simply fascinated with how these folks have supported and championed her position on “Rise of the Pink Girls.” “It is an enormous win for my group, for my pals, my household, my assist system. Everybody at Common Studios and Disneyland and Disney Cruise Line is so completely happy for me,” she says. She provides that Frankie Rodriguez, who stars in “Excessive College Musical: The Musical: The Sequence” was the primary one from that group of pals to land a giant position. “I used to be so pleased with him,” she says. “And I felt like he gave all of us hope that it may occur for any of us at any minute.”
“It is arduous to maintain going to your million jobs and you do not have good medical health insurance and you do not have advantages and you do not know when you’re really ever going to make it, you simply wish to be a working actor,” she says.
It did not assist that there had simply been just a few bumps within the street for Fukuhara. A month earlier than she booked “Rise of the Pink Girls,” she says she was blacklisted from working as an additional in “Obi-Wan Kenobi” as a result of she needed to miss time on set for a unique audition. “I actually was like, ‘I am by no means going to work once more,’ ” she remembers. Fortunately, she was flawed.
Although “Rise of the Pink Girls” is a brand new course for “Grease,” Fukuhara’s journey with the beloved musical began when she was a child. She first watched the film with a cousin when she was round 7, and her sixth grade class carried out “We Go Collectively.” In highschool, she choreographed “Summer season Lovin'” for her dance workforce, and she or he’s a longtime fan of the cult basic “Grease 2.”
When Fukuhara first learn the casting breakdown for Nancy — “She’s a 16-year-old Japanese American. She is eccentric and unapologetically herself. She loves trend.” — she wasn’t fairly certain what to make of the character. It turned out the present’s artistic workforce — showrunner Annabel Oakes and songwriter Justin Tranter — was additionally figuring it out. As she went via audition rounds, it felt like they have been honing in on the character in actual time. “We have been form of discovering her collectively in these Zoom conferences,” she says.
The collection filmed in Vancouver, Canada, in 2022, and Fukuhara and the opposite Pinks — Marisa Davila who performs Jane, Cheyenne Isabel Wells who performs Olivia, and Ari Notartomaso who performs Cynthia — have been thrown proper into the hearth. The very very first thing they shot was the top of episode one, when their characters sing a reprise of “Completely different This Yr.” Holding arms, sitting in a circle on a mattress, they’re lifted into the sky. And it was a bit scary.
“And so that you’re holding one another’s arms. And everybody was like, ‘Are you okay? Are you okay?’ We’re checking in on one another,” she remembers. “And we have been singing, ‘We’re the brand new high tier. Look out. We’re right here. It is gonna be completely different this yr.’ And I felt like we have been really supporting one another, actually, on that mattress. And in addition figuratively. I may really feel it.” In that second, the brand new Pinks — and their bond — was cemented.
Maintain studying to see what Fukuhara has to say about her final day on set, the music she’s been listening to, and extra.
What was the final day on the “Rise of the Pink Girls” set like?
It was very lengthy. I am not even certain what number of hours we shot, but it surely ended up going until I believe six or seven within the morning. It was an intense day as a result of not solely was it our final day, we needed to get all the pieces in. After which we stayed as much as have fun. I wish to say all of us stayed up for 2 days straight, in order that we may all toast with pink champagne.
Apart from “Rise of the Pink Girls,” what was the final musical you watched?
I simply watched the primary two episodes of “Schmicago.” I stayed on the identical ground of a lodge as Titus Burgess when he was taking pictures “Schmicago.” I got here out of the elevator and he had his laundry, however I by no means heard him singing.
When was the final time you have been starstruck?
We have been staying at a lodge for our press junkets and our premiere and we have been within the foyer. And I used to be like, “Oh my god, is that Keanu Reeves? Take an image of me with him within the again.” Should you zoom in, he is trying straight on the digital camera.
Who was the final “Rise of the Pink Girls” costar you texted?
I simply texted Ari.
What was the final track you listened to?
“Speak It Up” by Sammy Rae & the Buddies. I am obsessive about that track and album.
What’s the most up-to-date photograph in your digital camera roll?
In all probability one in every of my cat.
What was the final present you binge-watched?
What was the very last thing you got on-line?
I purchased some shade shampoo. It should put the purple again in your hair.
What was the very last thing you probably did for enjoyable?
I do that factor known as completely happy planning. That is form of nerdy of me, however I discover it very enjoyable and form of therapeutic. Basically I take advantage of it like a scrapbook, but it surely’s additionally a planner. I write down all the pieces I’ve accomplished, after which I put little stickers in there and I take advantage of washi tape. It is an entire cute factor.
What was the very last thing you probably did for self care?
I took a social media break. Social media provides me a lot anxiousness and I overthink all the pieces, so my self care has been not posting photos of each single occasion that I have been doing.
What was the final present you obtained?
My greatest pal despatched me flowers for the discharge date. It was actually candy.
What was the final piece of recommendation that modified your life?
My brother gave me this recommendation in highschool, and I bear in mind writing it down. It is simply to care much less about what different folks take into consideration you. That is how I have been attempting to dwell for the final 15 years.
Season one in every of “Grease: Rise of the Pink Girls” is streaming now on Paramount+.
Picture Supply: Courtesy of Tricia Fukuhara