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On tonight’s jaw-dropping episode of NBC’s Midnight, Texas, viewers will be introduced to an ancient supernatural in the form of a man-seducing, man-eating succubus named Gina, deliciously played by blonde bombshell Taylor Black. If Taylor looks familiar to you, you might recognize her from CBS’ Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders, Person of Interest, NBC’s Law & Order & 30 Rock, or ABC’s All My Children & One Life to Live. The actress was even cast in a lead role on The CW’s Marc Cherry-created series Cheerleader Death Squad, which was a show we were eagerly anticipating, but sadly did not make it past the pilot stage.
Tonight Taylor joins the cast of the Peacock network’s supernatural series in a role you can sink your teeth into! OMFGTV had the opportunity to chat with Taylor about her journey to making it onto Midnight, Texas, as well as discussing her experience on the show.
It was a beautiful fall weekend in Upstate New York, when Taylor Black received an email from her agent. The email included audition sides and a self-tape request, which she shot and sent to the casting department in LA. It was a role that excited the actress due to its colorful, witty, flirtatious and terrifying description. The role was one she said was something new and one she has never tackled before.
“I am drawn to roles that I can lose myself in, where I can really take on the skin of the character and step into very different shoes from my own,” Black tells us. “I really enjoy the process of creating interesting and atypical characters, and the more different they are from me, the better. My last three guest stars were: a troubled K-Pop Star (Criminal Minds), a Succubus monster (Midnight Texas), and an adult film star(!) for Fox’s Lucifer — certainly all very different from me, and seriously fun roles where I could create something new.”
After receiving a call from her manager and finding out she landed the gig, she was thrilled and very relieved because of her love and inspiration for the character.
“I had invested a great deal of time into everything about my self-tape — the character nuances, the styling, the hair and makeup, the lighting, etc,” she says. “I took some big risks with my self-tape to try to ensure that I didn’t get lost in the casting pile, and I was beyond gratified that they paid off and the creative team responded! I hoped to show moments in my tape of the subtle underlying darkness lurking beneath Gina’s innocent, flirtatious facade.”
Arriving on set in Albuquerque to film her episode, titled, “Sexy Beast,” Black says the whole experience was a blast!
“The cast, creative team, and crew could not have been kinder and more welcoming!,” she effuses. “The vibe was that of a warm and supportive family. We shot in New Mexico, and I had no idea how strange desert weather can be! I literally experienced every weather pattern in the books! It snowed, it hailed (!), it was really hot during the day and FREEZING with strong winds at night! We did a lot of night shoots, and it was brutally cold, but I am also pretty used to it from years of working in NYC where it always seems to be freezing shooting outside in the winter for episodic season.”
Embodying the role of the evil succubus, Black shares that “it was truly a dream, an absolute blast!” She loved the freedom to have fun with the part, as well the idea that the character is such a paradox, which she says is “very rare and exciting for any actor!” Though it was a dream to play, the role didn’t come without its challenges.
“The challenges lied in the technicality of the special effects, motion capture, etc, but it was a blast!” she says. “I had a prosthetics fitting in New York, which was the most bizarre experience! They completely cover your face in layers of slimy stuff and you can only breathe through your nose for about 20-30 mins! Very strange! It actually sort of felt like a bizarre facial…” (Side Note: Interesting to know special effects makeup artists are still using this method. I’ve seen a newer method where tracking dots are placed on the talents’ faces, and a technician scans the whole face into the computer, which then prints out a 3D mold of the subject.)
“Another challenge lied in the ambition I had to try to create a character that was different than anything I had seen before,” Black continues” “I have personally never seen a succubus on screen, so I felt it gave me a fun opportunity to imagine what that might mean. I loved the idea of a character who seems sweet, charming, and innocent, but in reality, is the complete opposite. To me, a succubus reminded me of the sirens in Greek mythology, dangerous mystical creatures who lured sailors into islands with their enchanting beauty and trap of singing beautiful music.”
After the completion of filming the episode in New Mexico, it was just now time to wait for it to air. While some actors won’t even watch the episode in which they have guest-starred in, Taylor has been watching Midnight, Texas along with fans from the beginning! It’s a show she loves “everything” about!
“I truly love the idea of a place where outsiders fit in,” she says. “I appreciate the authenticity and diversity of the characters, and the notion that you can make your own family based on finding the people who you relate to and who truly have your back. I love the fast-paced action, the humor, the sense of community, the exploration of dark forces, and the mystical elements.”
For the Midnight gang, especially Joe and Chuy, Succubus Gina’s arrival is very disconcerting. There hasn’t been a succubus at Midnight for over a century. Their perpetual glamour lets them appear beautiful so they can seduce their prey, leaving a trail of bodies behind. And a trail of dead bodies means bad news for the outsiders. Can they stop Gina before she causes too much damage and what kind of havoc will she wreak on the town?
“All I can say is just that Gina comes to Midnight with a VERY hearty appetite ;)”
Midnight, Texas, “Sexy Beast,” airs tonight at 10pm on NBC.