By HAZEL REID

 

I had the pleasure of chatting to The Flash’s Malese Jow, who was in town for Auckland’s annual Armageddon Expo recently. Malese talked her favourite characters, doing major stunts and playing her own doppelgänger!


You spent your younger years on Nickelodeon’s hit TV series Unfabulous. How did you discover your passion for acting?

It’s one of those things where some kids like sports or maths or something like that. I knew early on that I loved to entertain. I was a very shy little girl but any opportunity I had to sing for family [or] friends, I performed for them and I’d come alive. I have such a supportive family who supported me from day 1 and got me going.


The Vampire Diaries
and The Flash have huge fan followings, what was it like to be apart of these big TV series?

I’ve been very lucky to be apart of not one, but two big shows now. It’s a huge honour!


Alongside your recurring roles in TVD and TF, you’ve also guest starred on shows that include NCIS: LA, Castle and CSI: Miami – do you have a favourite character you’ve played?


NCIS
was cool… it came out I was related to Granger, which everyone was shocked about, but I still got to be a badass which was awesome. I’d never used a fake gun before and they look so realistic, I was like, “I don’t even know how to hold this, guns freak me out.” I’ve been very lucky to play very strong characters and that seems to be the recurring theme! It’s hard to pick a favourite as they’re all different in their own way.

As far as recently, I love playing Linda Park [on The Flash]. She’s a sassy woman, she knows herself, she’s comfortable in her skin and confident. She’s also fun and very smart, she kind of embodies the ultimate woman so it was an honour to play her.


Who did you get along with best on set of The Flash?

Everyone was so much fun and so freaking nice. There was definitely not a favourite, they’re all amazing – cast and crew. They’re all pretty much versions of their characters: Grant is this quirky, fun yet hard-working, serious guy and Candace is awesome. I got to work with more of the team in Season 2.


What was your favourite episode/storyline to film?


Honestly getting to play two characters in Season 2 of The Flash was totally out of left-field, I didn’t even know that was going to be happening but they trusted me with that responsibility to kick off that storyline with a doppelgänger. That was a goal as an actor that I wanted to do, to act with myself. That was my favourite, I got to do a lot of stunts and it was really fun.


Getting to do your own stunts must have been exciting! What was that experience like?


Everything happened so fast with that it was like, “hey I know you’re flying out to Vancouver soon, by the way you’re going to be playing two characters now this season.” It was hard to wrap my head around! We tried to fit in a little bit of training and there was fight choreography so it was cool as I got to finally work with the amazing stunt team. We tried to come up with specific moves for my character that make sense with her powers and they play attention to detail on that show. I got to get dropped down off the side of a building, you know – no big deal, just a casual day on The Flash! It was cool to experience that.


If you could choose to work with anyone on an upcoming movie or TV series, who would it be?

I would love to work with Kevin Spacey. He is absolutely amazing, I’m watching his masterclass right now and I just feel like I could attain so much knowledge from him. At the same time, he seems fun and doesn’t take himself too seriously, which is awesome so I would love the opportunity to work with him.


Is there any particular genre you would like to pursue in the future?


There’s so many things – as an actor I try not to keep myself in a box. Anytime I feel like I’m maybe starting to get typecast, I freak out! *laughs*

I would love to get more into comedy, I feel like I’m a naturally funny person in life but haven’t really gotten the opportunity to show that in my work, so that would be awesome. A huge blockbuster movie of course, is the ultimate for an actor. I would like to sink my teeth into and physically have to transform for a role or really have to study up on it. It would have to be something outside my comfort zone.


What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?

Keep going with anything – know you’re worth and don’t sell yourself short.


Speaking of advice, do you have any words of wisdom for our readers that are interested in a career in the industry?

Honestly with any career, any field – if it’s what you love and you’re passionate about it – go for it. Be persistent and make that dream come true.


What’s coming up next for you?

I have some things that I’ve filmed over the past year [and] I’m just waiting to hear release dates. I did a TV movie with Jeremy Sumpter and a web series for the CW – it’s a vampire musical. That was super fun and music is always in the works.

 

We had tons of fun at Armageddon this year – click here to read our full review!

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