Regina King: Emmy Award-Winner Talks HBO’s ‘The Leftovers’

Regina King and Kevin Carroll star as Erika and John Murphy. (Photo Credit: Van Redin/HBO)

Regina King and Kevin Carroll star as Erika and John Murphy.
(Photo Credit: Van Redin/HBO)

Writing for The Root, The Burton Wire‘s editor-in-chief Nsenga K. Burton, Ph.D., interviewed Emmy award-winning actress Regina King about her career trajectory and next role on Season 2 of HBO‘s ‘The Leftovers.’ Check out an excerpt from the interview below:

EXCERPT BEGINNING

King’s Emmy win was for her role as Aliyah Shadeed on ABC’s critically acclaimed hit American Crime, on which she brilliantly played the role of the Muslim sister of Carter (Elvis Nolasco), a troubled individual who could not get it together or keep it together until it was too late. King brought intensity and integrity to a complicated character committed to saving the life of her brother.

Fans of King’s work in that role will welcome her addition to season 2 of HBO’s The Leftovers as Dr. Erika Murphy, the local doctor in charge of the urgent-care facility in town. 

Her husband, John Murphy, played by Kevin Carroll, is a member of the town’s volunteer fire department. Their teenage twins, Evie and Michael Murphy, played by Jasmin Savoy Brown and Jovan Adepo, are close but couldn’t be less alike. Erika is a free spirit and John is deeply thoughtful and religious. King joins the remaining members from season 1 of the ensemble show, whose plot revolves around the aftermath of “the Sudden Departure,” during which 140 million people vanished from the world’s population three years prior. Season 1 took place in upstate New York. Season 2 moves to eastern Texas, population 9,261, where no one was taken during the sudden departure.

King, who is no stranger to ensemble shows, having starred in 24 and Southland, was attracted to the role of Erika Murphy because of the writing and the mystery surrounding the town and her character.

“The character and show are intriguing enough that it keeps you tuned into it,” says King. “In the very first script, you discover that there’s a physical challenge that is invisible. A lot of people deal with it, and I was curious to see where they went with that storyline,” she adds. “The show is not so mysterious that you’re like, ‘Oh, the hell with it, I’m tired of trying to figure this out.’ It keeps you there and you want to commit to finding out what’s going on.”

A lot is going on in season 2 of The Leftovers, and King’s character, Erika, and her husband are a big part of it. King, who only has a couple of scenes with series lead Justin Theroux, whom she calls a “cool cat,” spends most of her time playing opposite Kevin Carroll.

“I absolutely love Kevin, the entire family, really,” she says. “We kind of just fell into a groove really quickly. They were already shooting before I got to Austin. Kevin was already the father figure when I got there,” King adds. “He says he didn’t know what to expect from ‘Regina King,’ which I find really funny, but it worked out very well…”

EXCERPT ENDS

The second season of HBO’s ‘The Leftovers’ premieres October 4, 2015. 

Read the entire article at The Root.

Follow The Burton Wire on Instagram or Twitter @TheBurtonWire.

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