Exclusive Interview: Kelly Hu Talks Working On Castle, Esposito & Fantasy

SEAMUS DEVER, KELLY HU

Kelly Hu guest-stars on this week’s episode of Castle as Scarlet Jones, a bodyguard to adult video mogul Beau Randolph. When her client turns up dead, Jones becomes embroiled in the crime while attracting the eye of Det. Esposito [Jon Huertas] in the process. TV Equals had fun talking with Hu about her guest role and whether Scarlet poses a threat to Esposito and Lanie’s [Tamala Jones] potential romance. Castle airs January 21 at 10:01/9:01c on ABC.

I’ve been reading a little bit about your character on Castle. It seems like it’d be fun to play a bodyguard. How did you get into character?

Kelly Hu: You know, this character of being a bodyguard is not very difficult for me. I do it all the time (laughs). I was a bodyguard on X2 I’m a bodyguard on this show that I’m recurring on called Arrow…people just kind-of expect me to be able to kick ass, but really I’m a nice person…I really can’t guard anybody’s body in real life (laughs). I don’t know why I keep getting hired to do these roles.

Do you think your black belt might have something to do with it?

Kelly Hu: Yeah, maybe. I do have a black belt in karate, but in reality…it takes years to actually be able to apply that stuff, and I did get my black belt in Beverly Hills, so (laughs). My dojo was in Beverly Hills. So I don’t know if people would really expect that much out of me (laughs).

What role will Scarlet take in this investigation?

Kelly Hu: I actually am a suspect, so I go through the entire interrogation and everything, and I’ve got some great scenes with with Nathan [Fillion] and Stana [Katic]. There’s a little bit of an attraction between my character and Esposito [Jon Huertas], so we end up going on a little date and everything, as well. So, yeah, I’ve got some fun stuff going on.

Cool. And speaking of the romantic attraction, how does the date impact what Esposito and Lanie have together?

Kelly Hu: I’m a little worried about that (laughs). Everybody’s been asking me! I’m expecting some hate mail after this episode!

And the person your character is guarding, Beau Randolph, has some surprises in his past. Can you give any clue as to what those might be?

Kelly Hu: …I think he’s very much like a Joe Francis-type character, and I’m sure Joe Francis has a lot of skeletons in his closet too. But I can’t think of anything right now that I can give away without giving storyline away. There’s such a great twist in this that’s so unexpected and I don’t want to spoil it. He’s not who you think he is.

What was it like to work with the cast?

Kelly Hu: Everyone on this set was so awesome to work with. I don’t just say that because you guys probably hear that all the time, but seriously, I mean, it’s one of those sets where they’ve been on for five years, no one has an ego. Nathan and Seamus [Dever] and Jon…nobody takes themselves seriously, so they’re all just joking around all the time, and Stana’s just such a nice girl. I mean, it was just so great to sit down with her in between scenes and just talk girl stuff. She and I actually did a movie together. It was actually her movie–we didn’t actually have any scenes together but we were in the same film–called Stiletto. So, we reminisced a lot about that and working with some of the other crazy actors on that film (laughs).

My last question is if you could guest star on any other television show, which one would it be?

Kelly Hu: Well, I’m guest-starring right now on Arrow…and I’m also recurring on a show called Warehouse 13 on Syfy. So, I’ve got it pretty good, you know? I’m kind-of living the dream at the moment. I love being in these fantasy-type shows. It’s such a great fit for me. I always thought I existed better in fantasy than I exist in reality anyway (laughs).

Thanks so much for speaking with me, and–this is absolutely true–out of all of the X-Men films, X2 is my favorite.

Kelly Hu: Oh yea! Thank you! My favorite too!

About The Author

Monique Jones is a freelance entertainment writer who also runs Moniqueblog.net, a site analyzing how race and culture are perceived in American entertainment. She has been published on ShockYa, Racialicious, Topless Robot and more.