We have an exclusive interview with the Sonya Walger (“Margot”) and Showrunner and Executive Producer Allan Heinberg. Disney & ABC invited me out to LA to interview the cast and crew of The Catch. All opinions are my own. Travel and accommodations were covered.
My husband and I have only a few shows that we watch together. In the early years of our marriage, we were hooked on Lost. When I told my husband we were going to interview Penny from Lost, he was in awe! We love the show Lost!
Not only that, we also had the chance to interview Allan Heinberg, the Showrunner and Executive Producer of The Catch. He is also known for his work on Grey’s Anatomy, another favorite show of mine!
Before our interview, we screened episode 203: The Dining Hall!
Being a fan of Grey’s Anatomy, I was excited when I saw T.R. Knight guest star on The Catch! I love when I see my favorite characters from Grey’s Anatomy appear on other shows!
Photo Credit: ABC/Bob D’Amico
We interviewed Sonya Walger and Showrunner and Executive Producer Allan Heinberg. Sonya Walger stars as Margot in The Catch. She also appeared in Lost as Penny! Personally, I love Penny’s character. Margot is the complete opposite of Penny. She’s fashionable and not so nice when she means business.
Question: Sonya, there’s so many twists and turns in the show. Is there one that surprised you?
Sonya Walger: Yeah, you haven’t seen it yet. Yep, that one was quite a big one, too, I have to say.
Question: So you’re now having to go to Alice and work for her, and from season one, there was that whole thing- everything with Ben and not wanting to- are you, and maybe you won’t get to tell us, but is there something along the lines later on where you’ll come back and change the relationship you have her now, like, working with her? Is something gonna happen later on or that something that’s just gonna keep going?
Sonya Walger: 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, Margot is Margot, so you wanna be careful of that. But 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.
Question: I have to know, how long did it take you all to film the umbrella scene? Note: We screened Episode 203: The Dining Hall that features an umbrella scene! Be sure to watch and then come back here to read our interview again!
Sonya Walger: 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 the things we all love about John is he comes with such a game plan, and you can speak to this, too, but he just- he arrives so prepared, and to do a scene like that with all the- so much coverage, meaning you’ve got big, wide shots and close-ups, and you know, you’ve got so many different angles, that you wanna have, not just to 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.
Allan Heinberg: And you have to get it all before it gets dark.
Sonya Walger: Right, so you’re up at stupid o’clock to get that ready.
Question: Where does the title, The Catch come from? I think when I first started watching to show, I thought it was because Alice was trying to catch Ben, but then I don’t remember if it was the end of season one or the beginning of season two where there’s a line where he says, so what’s the catch.
Allan Heinberg: Yeah.
Question: So where does it come from?
Allan Heinberg: Well, for me, the show- before I came on board, the show was already- 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, in love, it’s never the whole fantasy. There’s always something pulling you back down to Earth. As much as you want to be fully [in love], 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, is something, less romantic and a lot harder to achieve. And so that’s the way we’ve been proceeding is, like, there’s always a catch with these relationships and how do you work it through? How do you work through it?
Question: I love all the banter.
Allan Heinberg: Oh, I’m so glad. I’m so glad. We have the most amazing cast, so it’s so fun to write that for them.
Photo Credit: ABC/Image Group LA
Question: Can you talk a little about the fashion?
Sonya Walger: 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 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 is she now knows- she knows my body better than I do, so 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, and it’s glorious. It’s glorious. And it just means by the time I’ve been through the works, Margot’s there. It’s such an enormous part of being a character is having the right look and jewelry, and hair, and makeup, and things. It’s like zipping on a suit and then, and then half your work is done, really, is- it’s an amazing…
Allan Heinberg: I have to say, the show is crazy. It’s just crazy in a great way, but it makes it really fun wardrobe wise because tonight you’re going to- you haven’t seen it yet, but you’re going to a high-stakes underground casino or the Barbara Streisand outfit that you wore to the bank with the bob- with the wig, you know, like, 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. Sex in the City was a bit like this, too, where we just kept pushing and pushing.
But Peggy has such a clear sense of the actor and the character, that it just is a delight, like, I’ve never- one time Gina Torres wears a terrible coat…
Allan Heinberg: In episode six or seven, but it’s supposed to be terrible, but I was like, just maybe two… It’s like this horrible Bar Mitzvah- it’s, you’ll see it. You’ll know what I’m talking about. But that was the one time in two seasons where I was like, does it really have to be on television? Yes. Otherwise, perfect.
Photo Credit: ABC/Richard Cartwright
Question: Do we get a lot more of Gina Torres in season two?
Sonya Walger: Every episode. She’s in every episode. Yeah. She’s fantastic. And she can wear clothes like nobody’s business. I mean, yeah.
Photo Credit: ABC/Richard Cartwright
Question: There are so many strong female leads. Are the guys starting to feel a little outnumbered…
Sonya Walger: A bit.
Allan Heinberg: I think when we brought Rhys on full time, Pete Krause was like, alright, we’re okay now. I’ve got a 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 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, like…
Sonya Walger: Totally fine with that. Just don’t care.
Allan Heinberg: 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?
Sonya Walger: That’s so good. That’s such a good line.
Allan Heinberg: But Pete, I mean, it is a duet, the show, I mean, really it’s an ensemble but he and Mireille really- the show- 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 act two of that original pilot is all from Pete’s point of view. So you fall in love with him; you understand that he’s in love with her, like, it really is a duet in that, in that sense, so- but we do have a lot of really strong women.
Question: With Margot having so many pieces to her puzzle and you find more and more every episode, how much of that do you know in advance. If you’re filming episode three, how many episodes down the line do you know to have in your mind when you’re filming?
Sonya Walger: Well, again, because I have the most collaborative showrunner in the world, I have as much information as Allan has, I have. So if he knows, hey, you’re gonna hook up with so and so, and it may turn ugly; I don’t know, then that is- that’s the information that I have.
Allan Heinberg: And I’ll try to be careful because sometimes giving an actor too much information if you know too much about what’s coming down the road if you’re not a genius actor like Sonya, you can- it’ll pull you away from the present moment.
So I think a lot of showrunners withhold in order to protect the actor to keep them present in the moment. But because we’re cooking this up together, and because I want her as invested, and because her writer’s mind is so strong, I will usually- and I do this with Mireille, too, and with Pete, everybody really, if they’re interested in having that much information. I’ll tell them as much as I know. I’ll tell everybody as much as I know. And sometimes I’ll call from the writer’s room and say, this is maybe a terrible idea, but what do you think?
Sonya Walger: I love it. I’ve had both, honestly. I mean, I’ve had showrunners who were, the ink was drying as get the script pages so there were no heads up there. And that’s okay, too, truly. You just keep to a very present, and you’re like, guess what? In life, I don’t know what’s happening in ten minute’s time, so this is what I play. It’s not terrible and I’ve had the other where I’ve had all ten episodes ahead of time before we even shot a frame, to sort of process the whole arc which is more like having- doing a movie, say. They, but they honestly both have their benefits. There’s not- it’s not terrible to get, to get it last minute either.
Photo Credit: Coralie Hughes Seright/LovebugsAndPostcards.com
The Catch is on Thursdays, 10 pm EST on ABC.
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