Actress Kayte Giralt joins us on Close-up Culture for a fun chat about her journey in the entertainment industry and her upcoming role in Timothy Morton’s rom-com Body Swap.
Q: What initially drew you to acting and the entertainment industry?
A: I did a little bit of theater when I was younger and really enjoyed it. My parents stressed academics growing up so acting took the back burner as I pursed my education.
I did some modeling in college which opened the door to acting. It wasn’t until I was on the set of Ride Along – seeing all the hard work that goes into a project – that made me fall in love with the industry as a whole and want to pursue it full-time.
Q: You recently posted a pic on Instagram from when you were an extra on ‘Furious 7’. How do you reflect upon your journey and growth since that film?
A: At that time, I hadn’t booked a speaking role on a TV show or large film. Being around stars like Paul Walker and Vin Diesel really lit that fire in me to want to get to the next level. I started taking it more seriously, which included taking classes, getting new headshots, and networking.
It’s exciting to see how far I’ve come since then – I had no clue what I was doing back then! Not sure I even know what I’m doing now, but I’m in class and growing all the time.
Q: You’ve been involved in a number of big budget and acclaimed projects including ‘Little’, ‘Black Lightning’, ‘Ride Along’, and ‘Ozark’. Can you share any standout memories from your time on these sets?
A: All of those sets were incredible to work on! The casts and crew were very friendly and made me feel at home.
Working with Kevin Hart on Ride Along was probably one of my favorite experiences. He just walked up and introduced himself – then continued to make all of us laugh with every take. Watching someone just take the role and run with it so effortlessly was impressive to watch.
Also, getting to work with Jason Bateman?! Dreams do come true.
Q: On your Instagram bio, you admit to being a ‘Netflix Binger’. What are you enjoying at the moment? And what show do you dream of appearing on?
A: I have SO many shows I love! I just finished Umbrella Academy, The Haunting of Hill House (for the second time) and am currently watching The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.
I would dream to be on a show like any of those dark, mysterious, but with a lot of heart and a great story behind it.
Q: Timothy Morton’s ‘Body Swap’ looks like a lot of fun. Can you tell us anything about the film and your role as frenemy Lisa?
A: As my first lead role in a film, it was a learning experience to create a character that had an entire arc throughout. I got to play to my bitchy side which is always a fun outlet.
When we wrapped, the first thing Tim said to me was “Now forget all of that bitchiness and go back to being your nice self.” Ella Jordan (who plays CJ) and I don’t get along in the movie but we actually became really close when we weren’t filming.
Q: With ‘Body Swap’ and ‘Little’, you will have appeared in two body swap/transformation films. If you could swap bodies with anyone for a day, who would it be? And why?
A: I don’t think there is one person specifically, but I would love to swap bodies with someone in casting. Being able to see that side of the industry and have a better understanding of what goes into casting a film or show would be so insightful. I think it would make me more appreciative and also a better actor.
Q: What types of roles/projects interest and excite you?
A: Any project that has a strong female lead would be ideal! Just someone who knows what they want in life, doesn’t make excuses, and doesn’t let anyone stand in her way.
Also roles that are the complete opposite of who I am daily. I’m a girly-girl, with the hair and makeup always done. Playing someone with a little more grit would be challenging and exciting.
Q: What are your hopes and ambitions for the future?
A: My goal is to be a series regular on a TV show that goes multiple seasons. I know it’s going to be a long and hard road to get there but I’m willing to put in the work and be patient until the right role comes along. Staying positive is tough, but I stick with my mantra of: “It’s a matter of ‘when’ and not ‘if’”.
As Jason Bateman said in his SAG award speech, you’re just one job away.
Title photo by Jason Vail