EXCLUSIVE: Paula Garces on 'The Good Wife': "I Enjoyed Not Playing a Stereotypical Latina Character"

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Colombian actress, Paula Garces is a busy woman these days. She's the executive producer and star of her own show, The mun2 Look, she shooting a starring role in A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas (out Nov. 4), and tonight the 37-year-old actress is guest-starring on the critically acclaimed CBS series, The Good Wife. The cheerful actress took time out of her busy schedule to dish exclusively to Latina.com about her "sophisticated" Latina character on tonight's episode, what it was like working with fellow-Latina, America Ferrera, and how Latinas are opening their own doors in Hollywood.

Who do you play on The Good Wife?

I play the wealthy daughter of a very rich oil tycoon from Venezuela. Basically the story is that the Venezuelan government is trying to take my father's business and because he's sick, my character has to take charge. All of my scenes are with Julianna Marguiles and Christine Baranski because they are the law firm representing my father. 

What was it like working with America Ferrera?

It was the first time I had met her and I didn't know what to expect. I mean, we knew people in common and everyone had said she was very sweet, and it was exactly that. We hit it off and we exchanged information. She's living here in New York so she wants to hang out and go out dancing, so it was really nice to connect with her. On this episode, we had a lot of scenes together. It was a lot of fun, a lot of giggling and we were being girls!

America's story line on The Good Wife is something a lot of Latinos can relate to. Do you think fans will feel the same way about your character in tonight's episode?

I think so. I like this character because it's the classic rich girl story. When it really counts, my character has to step up and not be the spoiled brat she's used to being. She has to step up for her dad and she does - she takes the reigns of his business. I enjoyed not playing a stereotypical Latina character - she's a girl that's very wealthy, she's from a wealthy family and her father is a very successful businessman from Venezuela. But at the same time, she was raised here in the United States and went to very good schools. She also speaks English and Spanish and I like that. I like the fact that it was just a very sophisticated role.  

Do you feel like there are less stereotypical roles for Latinas nowadays?

I think things are definitely getting better and that's because Latina actors are taking charge of our own path. A lot of Latinas are working behind the scenes - directing, producing and creating things. That's why I admire Eva Longoria and Salma Hayek and America Ferrera, because they produce their own things and that's something I have also tried to do in my career. I co-created my mun2 show, The mun2 Look, which is a show about fashion, music and entertainment for the bi-cultural Latina. It's for the person that has grown up here but still wants the stay in contact with their culture. It's a show about us, for us, and by us, and it's been a lot of fun for me!

 

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