Nurses’ Natasha Calis Talks Ashley’s Background, Friendship With Cast Members, And Season 2

Again in early 2020, earlier than the pandemic had actually began, CBC premiered Nurses, their new medical drama. A 12 months later, it premiered within the U.S. on NBC. And we’re so glad it did!

We’re solely midway by the primary season at this level, so we’re nonetheless attending to know the characters, however thus far, we love all of them!

We did not love Ashley Collins a lot to start with. she would not make one of the best first impression, however she’s rising on us. The proficient Natasha Calis play Ashley. 

Natasha’s been performing since age seven. She’s recognized for her function in Field Workplace Hit, The Possession, and NBC’s The Agency.

Natasha took a while to speak with us about Ashley’s character and what she thinks individuals have gotten and can get out of the present.

Disclaimer: This interview has been edited for readability.

Nurses got here out a few 12 months in the past in Canada and is now airing for the primary time within the States. Is it bizarre for you that we’re simply watching Nurses Season 1 Episode 5 when of us again dwelling have already seen episode ten?

Yeah, it’s positively attention-grabbing, but it surely’s actually enjoyable to revisit all of it. It’s enjoyable to see and expertise for the primary time what individuals are seeing on NBC and listen to their suggestions.

So much has occurred between early 2020 and now. Clearly, the present received’t be tackling COVID this season. It could be the one medical present that isn’t. Do you assume that may assist or hinder its reputation? 

I feel it’s at all times good being totally different. Now that a whole lot of medical exhibits are tackling COVID and perhaps we’re not, that makes us stand out.

I additionally assume that different medical exhibits don’t essentially pay tribute to nurses; they principally comply with docs round, so I feel we additionally stand on the market. We’re shedding the highlight on nurses, and following them round, so we’ll stand out due to these causes.

And also you’ve already been renewed for Nurses Season 2. Congrats on that, by the way in which. So, do you anticipate they’ll deal with COVID in Nurses Season 2?

We’ve really already filmed Season 2. We began filming in, like, March, earlier than COVID really, and received shut down, after which resumed filming in July and completed in October.

I don’t need to spoil something, but it surely positively gave the writers a chance, the months that we took off, to put in writing present occasions on issues which can be occurring in our world … it’s going to return in.

I perceive you’ve been performing for a very long time. It is a totally different form of function for you. Did you’ve got any data of or expertise within the medical subject getting into?

Did you do analysis; perhaps decide one thing up once you guest-starred on The Good Doctor?

Yeah, it’s really humorous. I came upon that I received the Nurses function on the set of The Good Physician, so it was form of enjoyable.

I clearly wasn’t a healthcare employee within the hospital on The Good Physician; I simply had a small function.

Nevertheless, in addition to being round Freddie Highmore and all of those superb individuals on The Good Physician, I instantly received to rejoice like, “Guys, I’m going to be a nurse now! I’m going to be certainly one of you!” In order that was actually enjoyable.

However sure, Ashley is certainly a very enjoyable character to play, and I realized quite a bit all through the method of taking part in her. We had per week of medical coaching earlier than we began filming Nurses Season 1, and so we form of realized the fundamentals.

We had the onset physician always (his title’s Josh, he’s superb) for answering any of our questions and exhibiting us the ropes. All the gear and every part on our units are all actual, and so he really confirmed us find out how to use it.

It’s been actually attention-grabbing. I positively realized quite a bit. 

Do you assume that medical professionals, nurses, and docs who watch it, will really feel that it’s correct?

I hope so. I do know that we attempt to painting the world as precisely and as actual as attainable. That’s why Josh is right here, and he’s useful.

On the similar time, individuals have to know that it’s a TV present. Plenty of issues are dramatized, and a number of the conditions are issues that wouldn’t occur, but it surely’s nonetheless entertaining to look at.

Hopefully, individuals can separate the truth that we’re a TV present, and sure, there are going to be some issues that may by no means occur, but it surely’s entertaining nonetheless.

What drew you to this present and the character of Ashley?

Effectively, she’s such a posh character. There’s a lot extra to her than meets the attention. There are many totally different layers to her.

She positively has this robust exterior, says what’s on her thoughts, and doesn’t sugarcoat something, however deep down, she’s so susceptible. She has such an enormous coronary heart, and he or she’ll do something to guard the individuals she cares about.

There are such a lot of totally different layers to her, which is actually enjoyable and thrilling to play. After I first learn the character breakdown, I believed, ‘Wow, Ashley’s so totally different from me,’ and that may be actually enjoyable to play. 

Nevertheless, because the season went on and I received to know her higher, it was actually enjoyable discovering extra similarities than I believed we had. I’m positively very empathetic and will be emotional, as is Ashley, so I feel that was actually enjoyable to play. 

She appears very shut with Wolf. They dwell collectively; he calls her his finest pal and favourite individual. Is there a back-story there that we’re going to get in some unspecified time in the future? 

I don’t know rather more than has already been stated: that they’re dwelling collectively and we’re finest buddies. I feel they’ve a very particular bond … a particular connection, which can clearly develop all through the season, as do the remainder of the nurses.

All of them type totally different relationships, and finally, by the tip, they’re like a giant household. You’ll positively see the opposite relationships type and develop all through the season, which is actually pretty to see.

She and Grace didn’t get off on one of the best foot, however now it looks as if Ashley’s actually there for her. 

Yeah, completely. And I feel that goes again to what I stated about how Ashley perhaps wasn’t probably the most likable individual initially, and he or she butts heads, particularly with Grace.

However then as soon as Grace form of explains what’s happening, Ashley finally has her again, and their relationship types and develops, which is actually enjoyable.

And Kieran and I are literally finest buddies in actual life, so it was actually enjoyable for us, but additionally exhausting to fake like we hated one another initially.

Because the sequence progresses, we develop nearer on digicam, which was enjoyable to play as a result of we’re simply taking part in ourselves.

So that you guys knew one another earlier than the present?

No. We’re each from Vancouver, and we met to do a trial for the chemistry earlier than both of us had been solid.

I received a message from her on Instagram, and he or she stated, “Hey, we’re staying on the similar lodge, we’re each from Vancouver, so that you need to apply strains collectively?” and I used to be like, “Yeah, that’s a fantastic thought.”

So,  I went to her room, and we frolicked for hours. We actually hit it off and have been finest buddies ever since.

After all, we will’t discuss Ashley with out speaking in regards to the severe sparks together with her co-worker Caro.

Are you able to inform us a bit about that relationship goes to work going ahead, with Caro not wanting up to now somebody she labored with and now issues are occurring?

Yeah. That was actually enjoyable and thrilling. Ashley could be very charming, so I feel that was exhausting for Caro.

I feel there have been clearly some sparks between them, like proper off the bat, from the primary episode, you’ll be able to see it.

So I feel it was inevitable, irrespective of how exhausting both of them tried to steer clear of one another. It was like they had been magnets in direction of one another.

It’s actually enjoyable and so candy. They’re so candy collectively. It’s a very pretty relationship that develops.

How do you are feeling about representing the LGBTQ neighborhood?

It’s superb. I’m so honored to share these tales and acknowledge such a neighborhood that’s so welcoming.

It’s actually empowering to listen to individuals’s responses and listen to individuals’s tales about how Ashley and Caro contact their lives. It’s an enormous, large honor. I’m simply so completely satisfied to convey this character to life and share her story.

We touched just a little bit on Ashley’s non secular beliefs. Is that going to return again round?

Yeah. Not on this season.

I don’t understand how a lot I can discuss this; I don’t need to spoil something. However, yeah, you do get to see just a little bit extra of Ashley’s household form of aspect and facet of why she the individual she is.

That’s touched on. I feel it is episode 8, the place you form of perhaps meet a member of the family from Ashley’s life, they usually have a dialog. Once more, I don’t need to spoil an excessive amount of, however sure, that’s positively touched on. 

What personally would you prefer to see occur with Ashley going ahead?

I feel the viewers is frequently attending to know Ashley higher from episode to episode as a result of she does prefer to painting this tough, robust, macho exterior. Nonetheless, actually she’s so susceptible, and so tender, and has the most important coronary heart deep down.

So I feel that may be enjoyable to play, and I’d like to play that extra and present why she is the way in which she is.

I imply, she grew up in a small city, in a Christian household of 9 individuals. Being homosexual, she was at all times the black sheep of not simply her household however of her city too.

There are the explanation why she has these protection mechanisms and why she has this extra tough exterior as a result of she had a tough life. So I feel showcasing that’s pretty.

We all know you’ve got some expertise as a dancer; are we going to see Ashley dance in some unspecified time in the future or some other particular expertise that you’ve?

I don’t know. Now we have a karaoke scene in Nurses Season 2, the place we had been singing and dancing, which was actually enjoyable. However really, legitimately dancing or taking part in soccer? No.

That might be enjoyable, although. Possibly I’ll have to speak to the writers. However I don’t understand how good of a dancer I’m anymore, although, truthfully. It’s been a couple of years.

You’ve gotten some curiosity in directing, proper? Do you direct any of the episodes on Nurses Season 2?

I don’t. It’s positively a dream of mine. I feel I’ll in some unspecified time in the future, little doubt.

Nevertheless, I’ve actually loved shadowing administrators and simply form of studying all that I can earlier than I dive into that scary however thrilling world. I do know it’ll occur very quickly. I’m very obsessed with directing.

Is there anything you’d prefer to share?

I hope everyone retains watching and retains having fun with Nurses Season 1. Keep tuned for Nurses Season 2.

Nurses airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC.

Leora W is a workers author for TV Fanatic..

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Huynh Nguyen

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