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Catching Up With Camilla

Catching Up With Camilla

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Felix Magazine’s Erin Wilson and Kaleigh Glaza catch up with Grey’s Anatomy actress Camilla Luddington to discuss her career, empowered women in the entertainment industry, and her life sans scrubs.

Felix: As you probably know, Felix Magazine benefits the Aparecio Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to female education and empowerment, especially in young girls. As a successful woman yourself, why do you believe it is important to begin emphasizing female successes at a young age and encouraging the next generation?
Camilla Luddington: It is not a ‘man’s world,’ but with issues like unequal pay still being relevant, it can certainly feel that way. By empowering the next generation and educating them at such a young age, we are giving women of the future the tools to continue to pave the way. It is imperative that our voices are always heard and the conversation for equality is never silenced.

Felix: Do you work with any other charitable organizations?
CL: I recently rescued a dog this summer, so I’m looking to find an organization that helps with animal abuse and rescue. The conversation is actually happening right now about which [charity], as there are so many great organizations to be a part of, but I’ll be tweeting more about that soon.

Felix: Grey’s creator Shonda Rhimes has become known for creating strong and complex female characters onscreen. Do you think this growing trend in the media will encourage young girls to take ownership of their lives and careers?
CL: I think women like Shonda herself are hugely influential. They are showing what powerhouses women can be in any industry. I think it’s inspiring, encouraging and long overdue.

Felix: What initially got you interested in acting?
CL: Believe it or not, I remember wanting to be an actress when I was 5 years old. I won my first talent show singing a Dolly Parton song when I was that age and ended up signing with my first agent when I was 11. I think initially, when I was a kid, [the draw] was the idea of getting to play make-believe. I wanted to be Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz—wear the shoes and dance with a scarecrow.

Felix: What challenges or struggles have you faced along the way and what helped you overcome them?
CL: You always hear about the rejection that comes from acting and it’s true. There’s an overwhelming amount. You have to become your own cheerleader, even when you feel like you’re the only one rooting for you to win. It’s tough.

Felix: Your most famous screen roles have ranged from a princess to a doctor to an action star. How do you get immerse yourself in such different characters?
CL: I think figuring out someone’s history says a lot about how they interact with people, choices they make, what they are passionate about.

Felix: Of all the work you have done over the years, what is the one thing you are most proud of?
CL: That’s a tough question. I am so proud of Tomb Raider because it was the most foreign medium for me, and it pushed me emotionally and physically. Lara Croft is also the character I’ve portrayed the longest. However, I have to say that I adore playing Jo Wilson [on Grey’s Anatomy], so really, the answer would depend on the day!

Felix: What is one plot arc you’d love to see for your Grey’s character, Jo?
CL: I would love to see her meet her parents. I think she could ask questions she’s always wanted to ask and perhaps get an element of peace from it. She still harbors a lot of pain from her past. It could be cathartic for her.

Felix: We know you are currently filming Greys Anatomy, but are there any other projects you can discuss that you are working on?
CL: I am currently working on the second Tomb Raider game, ‘Rise of the Tomb Raider’. On my days off from Greys Anatomy I hop over to shoot that and kick some butt!

Felix: You are originally from Berkshire, England. What was the transition like moving from England to the United States?
CL: At this point, I’ve spent the last third of my life in the US. I reside in Los Angeles, but I have also lived in NYC, Austin, TX, and Pennsylvania. I feel like I’ve been lucky to have a taste of very different parts of the US. The transition was actually easy for me. It felt new and exciting and, by the time I had moved away from England, I felt the itch to explore. I do always get homesick around Christmas though, and count down the days till I’m home.

Felix: And how did you master the American accent?
CL: I actually never took any dialect lessons. It was simply a case of listen and repeat.

Felix: What are some personal ambitions you would like to fulfill?
CL: My bucket list consists of one thing: to run a marathon.

Felix: What do you like to do for fun in your downtime?
CL: When I have a lot of down time I like to oil paint. Running is also very therapeutic for me. It’s a way for me to have alone time and zone out. I’m so busy, though, that my downtime sometimes just consists of a glass of wine and playing “Cards Against Humanity” with friends. We really are so addicted to that game right now.

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Felix: You’re in scrubs for most of Grey’s, but you looked very at home in higher fashion at our photo shoot. How would you describe your style?
CL: My style changes from day to day but I would say that my go-to outfit for running errands is more on the grungy side. However, if I can throw on a heel for something I will take the opportunity to do so because, yes, I practically live in scrubs.

Felix: Where is your favorite place to shop?
CL: I love Intermix in Los Angeles, or the huge Topshop on Oxford Street in London.

Felix: Favorite designer?
CL: I’m handbag obsessed. So for [handbags]? Stella McCartney.

Felix: Favorite place to eat?
CL: I love Moonshadows in Malibu for the view of the ocean, the Urth Caffe on Melrose for lunch, and Serendipity3 in NYC for dessert.

Felix: And, of course, to travel?
CL: England. I will always have to travel home.

Felix: Where is one place you haven’t been that you’d love to see?
CL: The Maldives! I want to rent out one of those over-the-water bungalows.

Felix: Any vacation plans or plans for after this season of Grey’s wraps?
CL: That’s months away! Not yet. Right now I’m immersed in episode 6 of 24 and don’t even know what I’m doing this weekend!

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