Julie Benz was a little shy in spilling the beans on Dexter Season 3, but we still got her to talk about which road she'd like to see Rita head down.
When do you start shooting Season 3 of Dexter?
We’ve been on hiatus since October, early November. We actually start back on Dexter in 2 weeks. We're back for 12 episodes.
What’s happening with Rita and Dexter?
I know nothing about Season 3.
You haven’t read any scripts?
Nothing! (laughs) But I [do] love my job. Coming out of Buffy and Angel which was amazing to be a part of I felt like who do I have to sell my soul to, to get this job? The cast is amazing our crew is amazing a lot of them came over from Angel. I've wanted to work for Showtime for a long time, I felt this was the cutting edge and I'll fight tooth and nail to get on any show [with them]. I had to audition for Dexter, I had to pre-read with an assistant casting director. I jumped through hoops to get on this show!
But you made it!
Because I'm ruthless! (laughs) It’s one of those shows when I first read the script I said, “What do I have to do to get this part? Who do I have to kill? Who's in my way? Who do I have to run over? Who do I have to pay off?" (laughs)
Did you wind up having to do anything outrageous to get their attention?
Since I did have to pre-read, coming off of Buffy and Angel, a lot of actors wouldn't have done it but I wanted the part. I wanted it so badly, I'm a hustler, you know? They thought I was too LA and too pulled together to play Rita. I got a call from my manager who told me he had a funny note for me. He said “I know you're going to get the part because you can totally do this, they want you to go back in tomorrow with absolutely no make up on and looking a wreck.”
And that’s when you knew?
Well, he knew. He said “This role is yours.”, so I went in the next day at 9am, didn't shower, wore my sweats I wear when I feel sick, mismatched clothing, my hair was greasy, not a stitch of make up on me. I signed in and I was sitting there and I heard them say “She's signed in but where is she?” and I was like, “hi”...they didn't even know it was me. The producer was like, “Oh my god, are you wearing prosthetic make up? I didn't even recognize you.” But I did have a bag of make up with me just in case they thought I went too far. It was like vanity out the window, that's how much I wanted to be a part of the show. I love playing [the character] Rita, it's great to play a character that has such hope after she's been mistreated. It's inspiring. She's so not jaded in a world that's just jaded.
Where would you like to see Rita go in Season 3?
I would like to see Rita move (laughs) I hate that house! I would like to see her upgrade her life a little bit. I’d like to see her get a better job. I would like to see her relationship with Dexter move to another level.
What do you think Rita would do if she ever found out about Dexter’s secrets?
I hope she never finds out. I really do, she really believes in the good in him.
And there really is good in him…
Yeah, there is and he needs somebody that only sees the good in him. Anytime you're with somebody you really want to believe in the good. You find the excuses and you really believe in that person. She would take it personally as well. Maybe I'm romanticizing, but if she found out, because of the children and they've been exposed to so much violence already with Paul, she'd be like momma bear and pull them from [Dexter’s] life. She's a mother first and foremost and wouldn't let anything stand in the way of that. I think sadly if she found out it would end the relationship.
What's your biggest fear?
Ohhhh! What's everyone's biggest fear?
Well, a lot of people say spiders...
I'd day something a little more emotional...
Maybe something a little deeper?
Yeah…being alone. I think that's everyone's fear. You know, we're not meant as humans to go through life alone. We need to be connected to family, to friends. After being in the jungle for three months with Rambo, I can handle spiders! I can handle any bugs you throw at me.