Karen Bethzabe Stars In AMC's Fear the Walking Dead
By: James Brookes
September 30, 2016
Outside the whirlwind of Hollywood glamour, the facade of materialism, or the unhealthy notion that 'beauty is everything' lies a small group of individuals that have dreamt of art for years. They are the ones that dive in and get their hands dirty through the trial and errors of creating an entity from the ground up. Whether it be a character, story, idea, or production, these individuals take into account all efforts needed to fully grasp the portrayal of visual media—being for work or pleasure. Unfortunately, actors & actresses like Jared Leto or Viola Davis are few-and-far-between nowadays, so when talent appears across the silver screen, you can see it a mile away with a breath of relief.
Lucky for you, Mexican Actress Karen Bethzabe has that ‘it’ factor everyone wants to see. If you haven't had a chance to check her out in AMC's killer show Fear the Walking Dead, what are you waiting for? Bethzabe recently joined the cast—with high praise—as the intrinsic Elena Reyes. A strong woman with a bloody past.
We caught up with the AMC actress this week in our Gas Mask studios to find out how she booked the role, and how life on-and-off the set was. "My best friend text me about a role that fit me perfectly, and I needed to do whatever it took to be seen for it. Once she told me the name of the show, I knew it was going to be a hot audition in town for every bilingual latina; I was going to need some hustle from my agent to get me where I needed to be." With a wide smile she said, "It was my agent's confidence, and the openness of casting director Wendy O’Brien to see unknown talent, that landed me the opportunity."
Portraying a strong female role, a rarity seen in Hollywood, can sometimes be over shadowed due to other characters or star names. In the case of Karen Bethzabe, that didn’t happen due to the sophisticated intelligence she brings to the table with her acting chops. “It's a dream to play such a complex character—one that has a voice like axe-wielding Elena. She is a problem-solver who had to make a terrible decision in the gripping cold open of the show . . . It's a fun role to play."
As if a dramatic role like Elena isn't enough to sink your teeth in, things on-and-off the set were just as great. "It was amazing; no egos. Only willingness to work in harmony . . . From the executive producers to the writers, directors, and actors . . . There was only passion for the work. It was very impressive to witness the drive and be part of it all."
"I had an idea about how big the show was, but the truth is, the fans blow me away with their love! It was wonderful to see them welcome Elena into the storyline and share their hopes and fears for her." Bethzabe noted. One thing is for sure: where there's one zombie on TV, there's millions of fans desperately awaiting more episodes. And with a pop culture phenomenon like Fear the Walking Dead, it's not only a career change, it's also a lifestyle change. She said with a giggle, "Strangers in Los Angeles come up to me and say, 'You locked them in?!' It's been so much fun."
And if you can't get enough of the Mexican Native, check out her latest role in the dramatic feature film LISTEN, which we reported earlier last month in an interview with Linc Hand. "LISTEN tells the story of nearly every high school in this country, where students hide their pain and adults are too overwhelmed to take a moment and listen. I played Rosa Ramirez—a single mother that ran away from a physically abusive husband. The story shares her struggles to raise three kids in a dangerous environment. I'm proud to be part of this film and have worked with director & activist Erahm Christopher. Currently, the film is screening around the USA & Canada. Details can be found at ListenTheMovie.com."
You can catch Karen on AMC this Sunday in the season finale of Fear the Walking Dead. We're certain it's going to be a killer!