Kelly Hu will be guest starring on tonight’s Castle, playing the body guard of a murdered sleaze tycoon. Yes, she can kick some butt. She played Lady Deathstrike in X2 and is currently recurring as China White in Arrow. I got a chance to chat with Hu about her roles, her fight scenes and exactly how geeky she is.
Fanhattan: So, what was the Castle set like? I hear it’s lovely to work on.
Kelly Hu: The set was awesome. Everyone on that show is so nice. And I’m not just saying it. Stana [Katic] is one of my favorite people. She just goes out of her way to be nice and I actually appeared in a film with her a long time ago called Stiletto, but we didn’t really have any scenes together so we didn’t really get to know each other. So, on this show, this episode, we really got to talk and be friends, and talk about all the other craziness that happened on the other film. But she was great. And the guys, of course, were just jokesters. It’s the fifth season, so everyone is just really comfortable and just out there having a good time. I play a bodyguard to a Joe Francis [creator of "Girls Gone Wild"] character, who I guess would need a lot of guarding. And, I am suspected in his murder. I am supposed to be guarding him, but obviously I don’t do a very good job because he gets killed. There’s a bit of an attraction going on with me and Jon Huertas’ character Esposite, and we end up going on a little date.
Fanhattan: Oh, there are a few people who might not like that!
Kelly Hu: Right! That’s what I hear…I might get some hate-mail after this.
Fanhattan: So, tell us about the date.
Kelly Hu: It’s TV, so it doesn’t go that far, but it’s—we actually shot at a really cool place, called Hemingway’s, which was a beautiful, beautiful set, but, uh, I’m trying to think of what actually goes on in the date. There’s just a lot of flirting, a little touchy feely stuff going on. I don’t want to ruin stuff, but it kinda gets cut off pretty quickly.
Fanhattan: Do you get to use any of your martial arts skills this time around?
Kelly Hu: You know, it’s funny—you’d think so, being that I get to play a bodyguard and all, but I don’t get to do any actual action in this.
Fanhattan: Do you get to do any of your own fight choreography on Arrow?
Kelly Hu: No. There’s a guy—he’s called Bam Bam. His name is actually James Bamford. He is an amazing choreographer. I mean, I feel like he’s one of the stars of the show, even though nobody actually gets to see him. But the stunts and the choreography, I think, is really one of the characters on the show, because people love tuning into all of that. And Stephen—he doesn’t have a martial arts background or anything—but you would never guess, because he’s so great at the fighting, and the bow and arrow, and all of that stuff. I mean, this guy has just really taken to all of that so well. I’m impressed.
Fanhattan: So, the rumor is that we’re going to see a China White/Deadshot team up in episode 16.
Kelly Hu: How do you know that?! Wow! I didn’t even know that—but okay!
Fanhattan: Well, I look forward to it if it’s true. You do so many genre shows and films. Are you into the geeky stuff?
Kelly Hu: You know, I am a total geek at heart. I’m also gonna be appearing on five episodes of Warehouse 13 next season. I am like Geek Queen! I love it! I love being in the fantasy world. You know? When you’re not limited by reality you can have so much fun with your characters, and you can be so much more creative. It’s just such a fun world to be able to live in. I actually exist a lot better in fantasy than I do in reality. [laughter].
Fanhattan: Do you have a specific area of geek interest?
Kelly Hu: I think I do well in comicbooks. But you know, I also voice Stacy on Phineas and Ferb, which is really popular. And I also have done Young Justice. I am currently recurring as a recording on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as well. My character will be coming up this week I think. But, you know, like I said, I love this whole fantasy stuff. I love being able to do fun voices and get to play these characters that are just bigger than life. Even as a kid, you know, in Phineas and Ferb, even as like a teenager—I get to do all these fun things on the show. I think the best part about acting is to be able to do things that you would never be able to do in real life.
Fanhattan: Did you get to geek out with Nathan Fillion on the set of Castle?
Kelly Hu: I did a little bit. I had a scene with him. He was so great to work with—such a nice guy. I mean, he really is a lot like the character he plays, just fun and quick-witted. He is very, very likeable. I mean, of course he is. He got the People’s Choice Award again.
Fanhattan: I know you do a lot of work for animal rights. Anything you’re doing at the moment?
Kelly Hu: I actually do work a lot with an organization called “Much Love”, where I got my dog from. I have been fostering for them, but I haven’t been able to do so much of it lately because I have been traveling so much on Arrow and Warehouse 13, and going back and forth to Canada all the time. But yeah, in my free time, when I can. I am a huge animal activist and, umm, I even ran the Honolulu marathon in 2006 to start up a reef check conservation project, called “Reef Check Hawaii”, which is run by a bunch of marine biologists. Reef Check is established in like 80 countries around the world. So, yeah, anything that I can do for the environment and animals—I’m all in.
Castle airs tonight at 10 pm on ABC.