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Get to Know: Tamala Jones, Actress on ABC's "Castle"

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Q: How would you describe your character, medical examiner Lanie Parish?
A: Lanie is a sassy, spitfire medical examiner who knows her stuff when it comes to causes of death.

Q: Do you see any similarities with your own personality?
A: I am sassy too, but can be very shy at times.

Q: What type of research do you do to develop the character?
A: Aside from watching reality crime shows, I use a medical encyclopedia dictionary to help me understand the jargon.

Q: What type of research do you do to develop the character?
A: Aside from watching reality crime shows, I use a medical encyclopedia dictionary to help me understand the jargon.

Q: Did you ever visit a morgue to get in tune with your character’s job?
A: The producers offered me the chance to visit a morgue and speak with real medical examiners, but I passed. I have a weak stomach.

Q: This role is more dramatic than the comedies you have worked on. Do you prefer drama over comedy?
A: I love comedy! Naturally I am a very silly person and I can find the funny in anything.

Q: Have you always had the acting bug?
A: I have always wanted to be an actress. My family would say I’ve been acting since I came out of the womb.

Q: You are the spokesperson for the Brain Aneurysm Foundation. How did you get involved?
A: After being quiet about being a brain aneurysm survivor for so long and hearing stories of people who suffered from them and actually died, I went looking for the foundation. It was like we found each other – we had the same passion of getting the message out.

Q: Your powerful story undoubtedly will bring awareness to this health concern. What are you doing to manage your condition now?
A: I live every day like it’s my last. I have lots of fun, eat right, work out, don’t let things stress me out and I do what I can and no more! I also get a CAT scan once a year.

Q: How has Hollywood responded to your condition?
A: Hollywood was shocked that I had an aneurysm, but have been very supportive of me spreading the message of the importance that everyone, no matter the age, get checkups on the brain as well as the body.

Q: Any upcoming ventures?
A: I am looking into becoming the spokesperson for Women Against Violence and Human Trafficking. It’s a major problem throughout the world, and I have been working closely with a survivor, Janice Higgins. Janice has written a series of books titled “There Were no Parents Here.” Very powerful stuff.

Q: If you werenʼt an actress, what profession would you choose?
A: I would be a psychiatrist or involved in some sort of missionary work. I love to help people.

Q: What is your favorite dish to prepare?
A: I love to cook Jamaican curry chicken. It’s my favorite because everyone’s eyes roll in the back of their heads after they taste that first bite. It is so good!

Q: What is your favorite quality about your personality?
A: My big heart. I credit my grandmother for that. She always told me to be giving and don’t allow what people say or do change my heart. I love her so much for that!

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