Earlier this week I had the pleasure of interviewing the talented actor Joseph Julian Soria. He has been on shows like Dexter, CSI: Miami, The Closer, Southland and most recently on Army Wives as Private Hector Cruz. Joseph Julian Soria (JJ) spoke about the show, how he fell in love with acting and his many upcoming projects. This was such an enjoyable interview and he is definitely an actor you want to keep your eye on.
Lisa: When did you realize that you wanted to be an actor?
JJ Soria: Well I was in college and I needed some classes for credit, and the choices were drawing and theatre so I chose theatre because it seemed the least boring. I went to class and literally that first class, I fell in love. I fell in love with the idea of creating characters and telling stories to make a living. And it went off like a light bulb because initially I was going to school to become a physical therapist. That was the plan, but that wasn’t going to make me happy. So once I chose this path, I set up a meeting with my instructor and asked what the steps were that I needed to take. He told me about getting a headshot and a resume, and I was like “What the heck is a headshot?” and you know I just went from there.
Lisa: How was it for you to join the cast of Army Wives, a cast that has been together for so long, in season 6?
JJ Soria: Very Easy believe it or not. They made it such a smooth transition. We just came on board and everyone was welcoming and willing to assist in any way they could. And there were no egos. Everyone was there as a family and wanted to have a good time making the project, and that’s exactly what happened.
Lisa: The whole cast seems to have great chemistry.
JJ Soria: Yeah, everyone trusts each other.
Lisa: Speaking of the chemistry and the cast, there has been some buzz about whether there will be another season of Army Wives. Can you confirm or deny if there will be a season 7?
JJ Soria: Hey, I’m waiting just like you guys are. I don’t know. I think business wise it would only make sense that they would bring it back, because at the end of the day it is a business and it needs to make dollars for the network and I think it still does. I believe it is still the highest rated show on the network. Also the fan base and demand is still there, so I don’t see any reason why they shouldn’t bring it back. But, none the less I’m still waiting to hear the word just like you guys are.
Lisa: Well I’m definitely keeping my fingers crossed! Let’s talk about Hector. He has had his fair share of drama, and now that we know he is the father of Penny’s baby, is there anything you can tell us about Hector’s relationship with Gloria?
JJ Soria: Um, it’s in turmoil (Laughing)
Lisa: (laughing) yeah I know.
JJ Soria: Definitely on rocky ground. Where they are in the relationship is, it’s under distress. I think Hector is doing exactly what you see him doing and trying to do whatever it takes, but he just has a string of bad luck and he can’t do right to save his life.
Lisa: Can you tell us if Gloria and Hector will reconcile?
JJ Soria: (Laughing) I can’t tell you anything.
Lisa: AHH! I had to try. (Laughing)
JJ Soria: All I can tell you is…well I’ll play dumb and say I know as much as you guys know. All I can say is just keep wishing for the best.
Lisa: I’ll definitely be tuned in to see what happens because I love the Hector/Gloria storyline. What do you admire most about Hector?
JJ Soria: His persistence to never give up. He loves her (Gloria) more than he loves himself and wants to do whatever it takes. He has a temper, he is stubborn and his immaturity is his weakest link, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he is a bad person. He’s a good guy and he just needs to get his head together. I don’t know if he can get himself out of this one, but I hope he does.
Lisa: Can you tell us about the movie Filly Brown and your character MC Wyatt?
JJ Soria: The overall film is about a girl that is a street poet and her aspirations to become a rapper signed to a label. We go through her journey and she finds out what is really important to her, family. MC Wyatt, my character, is the lead antagonist in the film and he is the star of the label she gets signed to. He is more of a production, like he was made and not necessarily the most talented. So when Filly Brown comes in with actual talent and starts to steal his shine, he feels threatened by that and because he’s so egotistical he will do anything to hold on to that spotlight.
Lisa: What was it like working with Edward James Olmos and Lou Diamond Phillips on that film?
JJ Soria: Eddie I didn’t get to work with but I did get to meet him on many occasions. That was awesome to meet a living legend in the Latino film community, and Lou Diamond Phillips who is a living legend in his own right. I mean how many times have I watched La Bamba? You know…RITCHIE!!!
Lisa: (Laughing) Yes!
JJ Soria: I mean he was Ritchie Valens to me growing up, until later on, like years later I’m like Oh that’s not the real guy? (laughing) You know?
Lisa: (still laughing) Yes I know what you mean!
JJ Soria: But he has had a great career and I am still friends with him now. It was awesome to work with him as a peer and not just an admirer.
Lisa: That’s amazing! Both are legends as you said and that seems like it would be an awesome experience.
JJ Soria: Most Definitely.
Lisa: What is your dream role?
JJ Soria: The next one. (laughing)
Lisa: The next one? I can understand that. (Laughing) ok, when you’re not filming, what do you like to do in your free time?
JJ Soria: I work out a lot. That includes boxing, swimming…I just love to play sports. I love basketball, football and I played baseball for many years, I could go hiking. I haven’t done much traveling, but that is another big thing on my list that I look forward to. Just really getting out there and seeing the world because there are a lot of beautiful places to see.
Lisa: Other than Army Wives, what are your favorite TV shows?
JJ Soria: You know what? To be honest with you I don’t watch much TV. I’m almost done with the series The Wire which is a little dated, but I love that series. I can tell you the shows that I would love to do an episode of, or be a part of. There is The Newsroom that is really interesting which is an Aaron Sorkin project. I love his writing. There is Breaking Bad. I love gritty shows. I love shows that play more true to life. That’s the type of stuff I’m into.
Lisa: Do you have any other projects coming up that you can tell us about?
JJ Soria: Yeah, I have a film called Mission Park that will be out next year. I’m really excited about that project because, I haven’t seen it yet, but I’m positive that it has my most powerful performance to date in that film. It gave me the opportunity to go somewhere emotionally that no other project has given me the chance to do yet and I believe that when people see this they are going to be like Oh wow, I didn’t know he could go there.
Lisa: They will be blown away by your talent!
JJ Soria: I hope so. I really hope so. I’m an entertainer and I’m in love with what I do and I want to be the best at it, you know? I want people to have that feeling when they watch me perform. It’s awesome to have someone watch your work and feel that way about it.
I have a film I just wrapped called Ten Cent Pistol directed by Michael Martin. Right now I am currently working on a short with a new director who is well known in the industry for his cinematography work. His name is Sal Totino and I am a big fan of his work. As a cinematographer he has done Any Given Sunday, Cinderella Man, Safe House, and now he is directing and I am starring in his short film. I’m excited to be a part of his new venture.
Lisa: That’s great! I just want to thank you for taking time today to talk to me, I really appreciate it and on behalf of Nice Girls TV we are definitely watching you and we are fans of the show so thanks again, it means a lot.
JJ Soria: I’m happy to do it and it was a pleasure.
Lisa: Thanks JJ!
Army Wives airs Sundays at 10/9c on Lifetime and you can follow Joseph Julian Soria on Twitter @JJSoria.