“I wrapped ‘Narcos’ at around 3 a.m. Saturday morning, rinsed off under a freezing cold spigot in the jungle, got on the plane and took the car from the airport to Brooklyn for a friend’s wedding.”
When we meet actress Kerry Bishé earlier this spring, she’s momentarily between jobs in Colombia and Atlanta, nursing a sunburn and happily reeling from the craze of filming for two of TV’s most loved shows.
The New Jersey native is back this weekend for the final season of AMC’s “Halt and Catch Fire,” before she joins another cult favorite, Netflix’s “Narcos,” on Sept. 1.
“They were trying to cast this role and I think it’s just some pretty specific requirements — an American woman who speaks Spanish who is willing to go down to Colombia for six months,” Bishé says. She plays Christina, an American married to a Colombian drug lord. “She’s this woman who really existed — she went to Harvard, met her future husband at Harvard business school. When I watch it, it makes me go to Google and try to figure out what really happened. ‘Could that possibly have been true?’ And mostly all of the time it is.”
The “Narcos” role requires her to act in Spanish, a longtime goal of hers. “It’s so much harder than I thought it would be — I was like ‘Yeah, I can carry on a conversation and tell jokes and stuff and get around,’ but you don’t learn the words for ‘cocaine paraphernalia’ [in 12th grade Spanish],” she says.
Though she’s part of two heavily binged shows, she’s not much of a TV viewer herself — or rather, a modern-day TV viewer. “I watch a lot of classic movies — my TV guilty pleasures are ‘The Wonder Years’ or the original ‘MASH’ show,” she says.
And while fans might be bittersweet about the nearing end of “Halt and Catch Fire,” Bishé is ready for the conclusion. “It’s good to know going in, so I can be prepared,” she says of the final season. “And also so the writers can have a chance to give the characters the development and conclusion that they really deserve.”
After “Halt and Catch Fire” and “Narcos,” she’s ready to diversify. “I’d love to play St. Joan or Hamlet, and hopefully I will,” she says. “But it’s also really great to be playing a coke addict, Spanish-speaking wife of a drug cartel guy on Saturday and then next Friday to go be a business mogul mother of two, kind of uptight, type A successful business person.”
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