Exclusive Interview with Sonya Walger (Margot) & Executive Producer Allan Heinberg, The Catch #ABCTVevent

When I first received my invite to LA for the Be Our Guest Event, I was pretty excited, and then as I read on and saw the event would also include ABC’s The Catch, I was ecstatic, and knew I had to attend. I am so in-love with this series. I was a late bloomer to the series and started watching it via on-demand after the first season had aired. I was hooked one episode in, and enjoyed bindging the entire season within ten days. I watched on demand, and even used the mobile app while on my lunch break at work because this show has so many twist and turns – I just couldn’t wait to see what happened next. Now that we’re into season two, The Catch is a fun escape that I look forward to each week. Airing along side with my longtime love Grey’s Anatomy, ABC is totally rocking by T.G.I.T nights. And I love it!

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We were able to screen an upcoming season two episode of The Catch while in LA.

“The Dining Hall” – Alice discovers some very hard truths about her brother Tommy and Val is forced to dig into her past in order to help with his case. Meanwhile, relationships are tested as Margot and the AVI team have to navigate their current realities, and Ben and Rhys’ latest con may turn out to be a little too risky, on “The Catch,” airing THURSDAY, MARCH 23 (10:00-11:00 p.m. EST), on The ABC Television Network.

You do not want to miss this episode! “The Dining Hall” does not disappoint. Featuring some twist and turns, some sexy drama, and a few laugh out loud moments, this is one my favorite episodes yet. I don’t want to give too much away, but there is hook-up I did not see coming! I have another exclusive sneak peek at the end of this blog post. Be sure to check it out.

The screening was followed by a discussion with show-runner Allan Heinberg and actress Sonya Walger (Margot). They were amazingly nice, and more then generous with their time and answers. I hope you enjoy reading the highlights from this interview as I much as I enjoyed being a part of it.

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Q: Sonya, there’s so many twists and turns in the show. Is there one that surprised you?

SW: Yeah, you haven’t seen it yet. Yep, that one was quite a big one, too, I have to say.

Q: Your character is now working with Alice. Will we see something happen that really changes your relationship?

SW: I can speak to as far as you’ve seen. I think what’s really fun is that Alice and Margot discover they have perhaps more in common than they thought, and there’s a sort of begrudging mutual respect while still there’s a lot of wariness because, you know, Margot is Margot, so you wanna be careful of that. I think that was one of the things- those beautiful therapy scenes that Allan wrote us in season one. What I think was so lovely there was the sort of- Margot had this moment of realizing they were both betrayed by the same guy.

They actually have all this common ground and, so that sort of moves into season two where I think they sort of realize they’re both strong, empowered, intelligent women who can go toe-to-toe, and neither one is gonna stand down. And then when they realize neither one is gonna stand down, then they have to kind of work together. I love the relationship. I obviously just love doing scenes with Mireille, so it was fun.

Q: I have to know, how long did it take you all to film the umbrella scene?

SW: So long. I mean, that was John Stuart Scott, our fantastic director who had done some episodes on season one, and that does them for several more on season two. One of things we all love about John is he comes with such a game plan, and you can speak to this, too, but he arrives so prepared, and to do a scene like that with so much coverage, meaning you’ve got big, wide shots and close-ups, and you’ve got so many different angles, you wanna not just tell the story, but then to tell the story in an exciting way, that you want to have someone who comes in really mapped out what the day is gonna look like. And John is impeccable at that- really wonderful, and we are blessed with an amazing efficient crew. That said, it took forever. But he was great.

AH: And you have to get it all before it gets dark.

SW: Right, so you’re up at stupid o’clock to get that ready.

Q: Where does the title, The Catch come from?

AH: Well, for me, before I came on-boar a version of the show already existed and it was, I think, a reference to Alice catching Ben. That was her drive. But for me it was about love, you can’t have it all, there’s always gonna be a catch. The guy you fall in love with who turns out to be your soulmate- it’s also the guy who stole all of your money and is a career criminal. So, like, in love, it’s never the whole fantasy. It’s always- there’s always something pulling you back down to Earth. I think a lot of us look at love as an escape from our daily lives. And the catch is that what real love is, something, less romantic and a lot harder to achieve. So that’s the way we’ve been proceeding is, there’s always a catch with these relationships and, how do you work it through?

I love all the banter.

AH: Oh, I’m so glad. We have the most amazing cast, so it’s so fun to write that for them.

Q: You came in and basically redid the pilot episode.

AH: Yeah, they shot a pilot, and it was about Alice was a forensic accountant, and everybody played different characters; Sonya was not in it; Pete Krause was not in it. And then those two roles were recast.

So they were just about to shoot Pete and Sonya into that existing script but, the network couldn’t figure out based on the scripts that came after, what the show was. So that’s when, I was brought in to say, if you re-imagined it, what would it be, and how much would it cost us.

Q: Can you talk a little about the fashion?

SW: Isn’t it killer? I tell you, it’s my favorite thing is going in for a wardrobe fitting, and that is not usually the case. Usually, you go to wardrobe fittings and there’s a tired lady who’s, like, hi, we don’t do black on this show, so here are the some fairy pantsuits. That’s usually what wardrobe is like. When you go in with Peggy, and there’s just a rack of the most exquisite dresses. She’s wonderful, and has just the best eye, and I think this is the fun of doing season two of the show, she now knows my body better than I do, the dresses are not ones that I would pick. I’m the mother of two, I’m lucky to get dressed in the morning, so just to be zipped into a thing with heels, and the hair. It’s glorious. And it just means by the time I’ve been through the works, Margots there. Like, it’s such an enormous part of being a character is having the right look and, jewelry, and hair, and makeup, and things- it really, really is. It’s like zipping on a suit and then half your work is done, really, it’s an amazing.

AH: I have to say, the show is crazy. It’s just crazy in like a great way, but it makes it really fun wardrobe wise because, tonight you’re going to a high-stakes underground casino or the Barbara Streisand outfit that was worn to the bank with the bob- with the wig, she walks in as Barbara Streisand and I’m like, can we get away with…? Is it too much with the glasses and the lips? No, it’s not too much. It’s fine. So it’s really- I mean, I’ve never – well, Sex in the City was a bit like this, too, where we just kept pushing and pushing. Peggy has such a clear sense of the actor and the character, that it just is a delight.

(ABC/Richard Cartwright) GINA TORRES, JOHN SIMM, PETER KRAUSE

(ABC/Richard Cartwright)
GINA TORRES, JOHN SIMM, PETER KRAUSE

Q: Do we see more of Gina Torres in season two?

SW: Every episode. She’s in every episode. Yeah. She’s fantastic. And she can wear clothes like nobody’s business.

Q: There’s so many strong female leads. Are the guys starting to feel a little outnumbered?

SW: A little bit..

AH: I think when we brought Rhys on full time, Pete Krause was like, all right, we’re okay now. I’ve got my partner; he feels a little bit better, and now they’re sort of a comedy trio with Gina joining them this year, so I think this year that’s sort of went away, but in the beginning, I think for Jay and for Pete, there may have been a little, like, there’s a lot of ladies. I’m not sure that our side is being represented, and we used to have that on Grey’s quite a bit, too.

SW: Totally fine with that.

AH: He just didn’t feel like he was- I’m like, you don’t understand. You’re a fantasy. You don’t get a point to be here?

SW: That’s so good. That’s such a good line.

AH: But Pete, I mean, it is a duet, the show, really it’s an ensemble but the, Pete and Mireille really- it’s interesting because I think the biggest change that I made was to give his character a point of view. If you’d seen the original pilot, you’re in her head the entire time. You have no idea what he’s thinking or why he’s doing what he’s doing. So the big change was all from Pete’s point of view. So you fall in love with him; you understand that he’s in love with her, it really is a duet in that sense, but we do have a lot of really strong women, but what a great message to have.

(ABC/Richard Cartwright) PETER KRAUSE, MIREILLE ENOS

(ABC/Richard Cartwright)
PETER KRAUSE, MIREILLE ENOS

Q: : Are the characters changing a little bit from what you originally pictured?

AH: I think they are. What’s interesting on the show is that the heroes and villains are so sort of clearly drawn at the front of it, right? He’s a bad guy who took all of her money. She’s someone who was victimized because she fell in love, and then it shifts so quickly so that even someone like Margot Bishop who kills people for a living- by her own admission becomes someone you actually feel for, and root for. And, that was sort of the beauty of, when Sonya and I met, I got the job, and then I met with all the actors one by one, and I said, congratulations, you have a new show-runner, and a new character to play- I hope you like it. And so everybody was great. She was especially great because she got it immediately, and pitched me in that first lunch, and I said this in the press previously, she said, what if, the way that Alice and Margot finally meet is that Margot is pretending to be Alice’s therapist? And I was like, I don’t know how to do that right now, but that is the best idea I’ve ever heard. And so I came back to the writer’s room with that idea, and they were all really eager for it to be in episode two or episode three. And I was like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. You keep it, and the point I was gonna make is I said to Sonya at that lunch, your character is completely different. We talked a lot about the relationship between Judi Dench and, boy, what’s his name?

SW: James Bond.

AH: Yes, and Daniel Craig as James Bond, and that initially, I was writing for Pete and for Sonya and, the previous version, they were sort of being put into something that had already existed. And this was me as a fan saying, I want you with your most British, smartest, and most crafty- she’s got the big vision for everything, but Margo’s role is interesting because she’s barely in the pilot. She’s got, two scenes. You just have to trust me on this- this becomes your story. Your family becomes, a huge part of what this is. The benefactor is gonna be either your mother or your brother, and trust me, it will develop, and I don’t know, I don’t know if you believed me, but you pretended to believe me. And sure enough, like, by episode two, three, four, you just start to see it shift and grow so that it really, I mean, it really in some ways becomes as much Margot’s show as anybody’s show. By the time Rhys shows up, and then Sybil shows up, for me, everything changed when Rhys showed up because they had a scene- a brother/sister scene where they were on the bed together, and it’s one of my favorite scenes we’ve ever done, and I just wrote a big four-page dialog scene just because I had John in my head, and that’s when the show changed for me. So you really have no idea when you start, the degree to which it can grow and change, and it has everything to do with your cast. Because if they weren’t capable of it, I wouldn’t be able to write to it. It’s very collaborative environment, and I’m constantly bouncing ideas off of them and seeing- even in rehearsal, what’s working; what’s not working; call me; come to me; if you have a great idea, let’s do it.

SW: But that is exceptional. That really, really is. There is- I can count on no hands the number of show-runners that are transparent, and accessible, and are like, hey, do you have a thought? Do you have an idea? What is it? What are your feelings, most of the time. I can understand because the trains have to run on time, and you’ve gotta keep things moving, but most of the time you get the script, and you say it. So, it’s a rare and great thing to work with somebody as collaborative as Allan which to answer your question again, is part of why the characters do evolve and change, is because there’s so much back and forth. There’s room, you’re not dealing with someone who’s just writing what they need to write. There’s actually room to see what you’re doing well and then write to that, you know?

AH: And I knew we had to reinvent the show completely in this second season. I knew that- part of what I think turned people off in the beginning, and this was partly our fault, we only had one episode to show people by the time we aired, and so I think everybody thought we were doing The Fugitive where it was like, I don’t want her to be chasing him in thirteen episodes. That makes me tired. I don’t want that. And now we have ten episodes in the can, and we’re able to show you this season- I don’t know if you guys have seen this new teaser that they just put out for the whole season, but this season is a huge drop, but that’s what last season was, too. We just weren’t able to communicate that to people or to the press in a way that told people what the show is more clearly. So I knew, okay, season two, we’ve gotta spin everything around, and if we are lucky enough to get a season three, we’re gonna do it again. Like, it’s gonna be the same characters you love, but new dynamics because I think what happens in TV, and you know this as longtime TV watchers, you get into the same character cycle. So, even on Grey’s, part of the reason that I ended up leaving after season six was, I could not write another Christina Owen scene. I just couldn’t do that, it just felt like it was paralyzing me and I felt like we were repeating ourselves a lot and, that’s one of the things that we work really hard at on The Catch is, like, always spinning the dynamic a little bit, and what two characters have never had a scene together? Let’s try to figure out how to do that and, that’s how the season started this season, was I really wanted more Margo and Alice, like, what happens when Margo walks in the AVI for the first time. I wanna watch that show, and then Margo ends up hiring the person she was trying to kill seventy-two hours ago. So yeah, we’re lucky in that we get to reinvent this show every ten episodes which is really fun.

Q: Can we bring back the mum?

AH: Oh, yes.

SW: You’ll see her.

AH: I love her so much. She’s the best person, too, and she lives in Studio City. It’s fantastic. That’s another perk of the job is, as a Downton Abby fan, I found out that she was in town and available, and this was while we were shooting the pilot. I called ABC and I said, can I get clearance on Lesley Nicol because I think she needs to be Sonya’s mom. You know, we didn’t end up using her until nine episodes later but, that was just because she’s in town, and she’s available, and she’s a lovely human being so yeah.

ABC's "The Catch" stars Peter Krause as Benjamin, Mireille Enos as Alice, Sonya Walger as Margot, John Simm as Rhys, Rose Rollins as Valerie, Jay Hayden as Danny and Elvy Yost as Sophie.

ABC’s “The Catch” stars Peter Krause as Benjamin, Mireille Enos as Alice, Sonya Walger as Margot, John Simm as Rhys, Rose Rollins as Valerie, Jay Hayden as Danny and Elvy Yost as Sophie.

Alice Vaughan (Mireille Enos) is LA’s top private investigator — and the one woman you don’t want to mess with. But when her fiancé (Peter Krause) cons her out of millions and disappears, Alice goes on a private mission for payback. No matter where it leads or the secrets she must keep along the way, Alice will stop at nothing to catch her man. From the producers of “Scandal,” “Greys Anatomy” and “How to Get Away with Murder,” “The Catch” is a one-hour drama starring Mireille Enos, Peter Krause, Alimi Ballard, Jay Hayden, Jacky Ido, Rose Rollins, Elvy Yost and Sonya Walger.
The Catch is executive-produced by Shonda Rhimes, Betsy Beers, Allan Heinberg and Julie Anne Robinson.

If you are not watching The Catch, you are missing out. That is my honest opinion. It’s smart, sexy and fun. You can catch all of season one currently on demand, and new episodes weekly of The Catch, air Thursday nights at 10:00 EST, on the ABC Television Network. A great addition to the T.G.I.T lineup!

Get social with The Catch and follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

FTC Disclaimer: I attended an expense paid trip by Disney and ABC to LA press events for The Catch. I was not asked or influenced to write a positive blog post. Photo Credit: Coralie Seright – Lovebugs and Postcards. All opinions shared are always honest and my own. This post contains no affiliate links.

Comments

  1. We haven’t seen this Catch and not sure when it is even on in our area. WE aren’t big movie or tv fans but after reading your post sound like an interesting entertainment.

  2. Ana John says:

    Never heard of this before. But, seems like you had quite a wonderful interview. Even the show seems pretty interesting. I’l watch out for this one.

  3. I’ve never heard of The Catch before, but I’m not an avid tv watcher. Maybe once its on Netflix I can start.

  4. Pam Wattenbarger says:

    I have never heard of The Catch but it sounds like an interesting show. I like the reasoning behind the name of it.

  5. I’m wondering why I haven’t seen The Catch. It looks like my kind of show. I’ll have to find it and make sure I DVR it. Love the interview too.

  6. Bella says:

    Oh this show sounds like something I would really enjoy. I will have to set it to record so I don’t forget to watch it.

  7. I’ve seen the previews, but haven’t seen the show. Although, I loved her from Big Love and Z world 🙂

  8. Anita Anderson says:

    I have not seen The Catch only a couple of commercials which look interesting. It is one of those shows that a friend tells a friend the next day at work did you see The Catch. Girl you gotta watch it.

  9. I have never watched The Catch, but it looks like my kind of show. I’m going to have to catch up on The Catch 🙂

  10. Claudia Krusch says:

    This is a fantastic interview. I will have to check out The Catch. It looks like something I would like.

  11. I’m a SUPER late bloomer to the show. I still haven’t gotten a chance to sit down and catch up on it.

  12. Never heard about it. But this seems interesting.

  13. Sonya sounds so cool! Thanks for sharing.

  14. Garf
    Twitter: g_kohls
    says:

    This sounds interesting. I will try to add this show on my list.

  15. I’ve never watched this show, but I always love Peter Krause. I think he’s a fantastic actor!

  16. Vrithi Pushkar says:

    OMG!! The catch is so addicting! My husband and I love it. This is a great interview.

  17. My teen guide says:

    I’m so excited to hear this show is coming back! Great interview!

  18. I have not seen the show. I rarely have time to sit down and watch TV on weeknights. Maybe when it becomes available for streaming on Netflix, I will be able to binge watch on weekends. Thanks for sharing your interview. It was an awesome read.

  19. Rebecca Swenor says:

    The Catch is one of my favorite shows right now. I tell all my friends about it. Thanks for sharing a great interview.

  20. adriana says:

    OMG! I love this show so this was so fun to read! The umbrella scene really was soooo amazing – I can only imagine how long it took to film! It’s such a good show!!

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