Sofia Vergara Interview
Having been number one on several Top 100 Sexiest Women lists for years, Columbian born actress, Sofia Vergara is already a huge star in Latin television. In 2003, Vergara made the leap to the big screen, crossing over into such English-language films as Soul Plane and Lords of Dogstown before landing a role in the 2005 movieFour Brothers. Since her exclusive contract with the Latin American TV network Univision ended, Sofia Vergara has teamed up with ABC to star in Hot Properties, but with that series coming to a close, Sofia found The Knights of Prosperity, another ABC sitcom where a rag-tag group of people fed up with their jobs devise one of the most original get-rich-quick schemes in history: Rob Mick Jagger.
UGO: What was it like to change gears from Univision over to ABC?
SOFIA VERGARA: It was fun. It's a lot of work, a lot of sacrifices, and it's hard when you're Latin and you have a thick accent, but it's all fun. I have been very lucky. This is my second sitcom for ABC, so hopefully, everybody likes it.
UGO: How did Knights of Prosperity come about for you?
SOFIA: I was already working with ABC and I had just finished Hot Properties, which was a sitcom that aired 13 episodes, but then we got canceled. Steve McPherson from ABC asked me if I was interested in this new comedy, to read the script, maybe he thought I was perfect for this role, and I did. They wanted me to do it and I was like, «Of course!»
UGO: In the first episode, Maz Jabroni's character says, «Why not rob some other celebrity like Alex Trebek or Willem Dafoe?» So, why rob Mick Jagger?
SOFIA: Well, because Mick Jagger is Mick Jagger, I think. When we were shooting the pilot, we didn't even know who were we going to have. We were with the writers Rob Burnett and John [Beckerman], and everybody was brainstorming who could be great, and everybody was thinking of Mick Jagger. But we never thought we were going to be able to have him in the show, so everybody was very excited to realize that he was interested in being in the show. They went and filmed him in New Zealand where he was doing his world tour, so none of the cast was able to meet him, but it's just great to be in a project that has him involved.
UGO: What's it like to be the only woman in the Knights of Prosperity?
SOFIA: It's great. It's a lot of fun. At the beginning, it was a little bit strange, but now I'm one of the guys and I'm learning a lot.
UGO: Your sex appeal on the show is undeniable, but you still have to act almost as a mother to the guys. How do you balance both sides of your character?
SOFIA: Well, it's fun. It's easy, actually, because they do things that are so unpredictable and so crazy, and sometimes so childish that any person that has a little bit of common sense knows that these are not going to work. But, I do think she's becoming more and more like them. At the beginning of the episodes, I thought she was going to be more like the conscience, but I think she's getting as crazy as them.
UGO: You had a chance to work with Reiko Aylesworth, who used to play Michelle Dessler on 24, and who now plays Simone on the series. What was she like to work with?
SOFIA: She's a great actress. In the last episode, the one that aired last week, it was the one that she was in and it was amazing. She did most of the scenes with Josh Grisetti, who plays Louis Plunk. She's a great actress, and she brought a lot of seriousness and a lot of fun to the show.
UGO: You had to move to New York to film the series.
SOFIA: Yeah, that was a good thing. I always loved to live in New York. One of the things why I really wanted to do the sitcom is because I want to stay here for a longer time, but we'll see. We've had a rough couple of weeks since we aired, you know. First it was some sports game, then we had the President talking in our time slot, confusing everybody with if we were going to air that night or not, then tomorrow we're going to have to go up against America Idol. We haven't been lucky.
UGO: It must be daunting to have to go up against stiff competition like American Idol, Deal or No Deal and Criminal Minds?
SOFIA: Yes, of course. It's a reality. These are very, very high-rated shows, and everybody's waiting for this since it's the beginning of the season. To be against them, it's not easy for any show.
UGO: What has been the biggest challenge in switching over to English-language television?
SOFIA: Well, the accent, of course. It's hard sometimes when you get excited or when acting and you're into the character to think of the words and the pronunciation. It's kind of a challenge for me every time that I'm doing a scene.
UGO: You've had a successful film career before you switched to television. Do you plan to return to the big screen?
SOFIA: Yeah, of course, I love it. I take the opportunities and I do whatever I have, but I love doing movies, too. I still have a lot of things to do!
UGO: In the end, do you think the Knights of Prosperity will ever be able to rob Mick Jagger, or is it more about the attempts and the bungled opportunities?
SOFIA: Well, I guess it all starts with robbing Mick Jagger, and it develops into many things. I don't think they're only going to try to rob Mick Jagger, or even just celebrities. I think they're going to try to get their money or whatever they want by doing anything that they can. They're becoming friends, they're becoming like family, and they have their problems, their lives. I mean, I think the show is not only about who they are robbing, but how they are trying to do it.
UGO: Apart from being an actress, you're also a successful businesswoman and a leader in the Latin community. Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the responsibility?
SOFIA: No, I can't complain. I've done everything that I've wanted to do. I moved to the United States 11 year ago, and I haven't stopped working, and I'm very grateful. I try to do other stuff. Do as much as you can while it lasts.
UGO: What's next for you?
SOFIA: Well, hopefully, The Knights of Prosperity will go for a long time. If not, it was great to work with ABC again, and work with this cast that is fantastic. I don't know, maybe I'll try doing a little bit more of movies. I don't know if I'll stay doing television.