Mikala Gibson Interview
“Looking back at working on Fear The Walking Dead
I learned so much about myself as an actress.
- First, it is an pleasure for myself to make this interview with you Mikala.
Thank you for your time for the Fans on The-Entertainment-junkie.de
Thank you for having me. I’ve received so much love from the FTWD fans in Germany so I’m excited to do this interview.
- Mikala, you work nearly 20 years in the business. When did you first discover your
passion for the world of Entertainment?
My late aunt was an actress. She performed on stage in New York and in film/TV in Los Angeles, but was killed before I was born. When I was around 7, I was visiting my grandparents that summer and came across her headshots, acting portfolio, scripts and theatre textbooks. My grandmother ended up telling me stories about my aunt and her journey as an actor. That sparked something in me. I looked at her pictures and books everyday that summer and was mesmerized. When I got a little older, I started taking acting classes and discovered my passion for acting. Before my grandmother died, she gifted me with my aunt’s SAG card and I became SAG eligible shortly after acquiring it. I truly believe that she’s with me on this journey. I still carry her card with me to remind myself that what I’m doing is bigger than me. I was called to do this! My aunt, along with my grandmother, ignited this passion for acting.
- In 2019 you had your part in Fear The Walking Dead as Doris. Could you share some
funny, remarkable, weird stories regarding the filming of your scenes?
Yes! I have so many stories but I’ll just share my favorite. When I got the role of Doris, I hoped that I would have an opportunity to kill a walker. I was shooting up stuff and blowing up buildings. That was fun and all, but I REALLY wanted to fight a walker. Finally I got my opportunity in my last episode. It was early in the morning and everyone was tired and ready to go home. After rehearsing, I was encouraged to get it right in one take or else they would have to reset and that would take a while. That made me a little nervous because the crew was tired and had been working so hard as usual. I did not want them to have to reset because of me. Danay and the AD gave me a few tips. I remember being told to smash the head of the walker as hard as I could, and to hit it as if I was trying to break through the ground. When I heard “ACTION” I smashed that walker’s head as hard as I could over and over and over. I didn’t even hear the director call “cut”. The AD had to come over and put his hand on my shoulder to stop me. Afterwards everyone joked that I must have had some tension to release. I was proud of myself. I got it in one take and it made it into the episode. I was so happy!
- Did you watch the show or read the graphic novel, prior to
your casting as Doris?
I watched a couple of episodes as research before I auditioned. Once I got the part I watched more. I also spoke to my dad about the show. He watched both TWD and FTWD. He is a huge Lennie James fan so he was very excited about me being on the show and was hoping that I’d have a scene with Lennie.
- If you look at the character Doris, would you have wished for another way for her in the series?
Of course! Doris lowered her gun right before she was shot so obviously she was convinced that maybe she could trust the group. I think the apocalypse can bring out the worst in anyone. I feel like Doris was a victim of this. She had lost hope for humanity and was trying to survive by any means necessary. It would have been great to see how her story unfolded. When I joined Season five of FTWD, I knew there was a strong possibility that Doris would die. I thought that she would go out with more of a physical fight because she was a badass. It was a great scene full of surprises but I hoped that if Doris had to go, she would at least go out with a bang. Well I guess she kind of did. :)
- Please finish the following sentence: “Looking back at working on Fear The Walking Dead
I learned so much about myself as an actress. This role stretched me and gave me the confidence to explore roles outside of my comfort zone. Working on FTWD definitely helped me broaden my horizons when it comes to the roles I pursue.
- FTWD was just a step in your career, you also worked in "The Beginning and Ending of Everything" as Joyce. What can you tell us about?
The Beginning and Ending of Everything is a mini series about a woman’s journey to find her young son after being released from prison. While searching for her son, she has to face and fight her own demons. I play her drug counselor who helps her on this journey. Joyce is familiar with the main character’s demons because she fought similar ones in her past so she can relate. My husband, Ya’Ke Smith, wrote and directed this project. I actually declined the role at first when he offered it to me. I was a new mother trying to balance everything and just wanted to focus on my son at that point. After I declined the role, Ya’Ke emailed me the script and told me to get ready. I’m so glad that he pushed me to do this. It challenged me as an actress and as a new mother. My son is also in this project. He made his acting debut at 9 months old! My parents came down to help us out. During this production, I learned that motherhood does not have to stop me from pursuing my dreams and life goals. I’m surrounded by support. I needed to experience this. You can find The Beginning and Ending of Everything on A Space for Creators and KweliTV.
- Mikala you also an writer. What can you tell us about the project "dawn."?
I co-wrote dawn. with my husband. I also starred in it. It is about a woman who gets out of prison with the desire to live a better life. She tries to make amends with her family, get an “honest” job and return to school despite the obstacles she faces with being an ex-offender. dawn. was inspired by my sister-n-law’s life, and it was also the inspiration for The Beginning and Ending of Everything. You can learn more about it at exodusfilmworks.com.
- What does the future hold for you? Anything you would like to plug to our readers?
I recently wrapped a new Netflix series that I’m very excited about. This one is about vampires. That’s all I’m going to say. You can also check me out in Season 3 of Tales on BET.
- At the last you can say some words to your fans. Is there anything else you would
like to let the Fear The Walking Dead Fans and your fans know?
Thank you for all of the love and support. I love getting messages and mail from fans all over the world. It blows me away! Thank you so much! I appreciate each of you.
- Thank you being my guest and best wishes for the future. I hope to see you one day in
Thank you for having me. I’d love to come to Germany! Hopefully we can make that happen.