If you’ve been watching the "OLTL" reboot online, you recognize Laura Harrier as leggy single mom Destiny. If you haven’t been watching the addictive return of one of our favorite soaps, then you probably still recognize her from one of her many current modeling ad campaigns with Macy’s, American Eagle, and Target, or as the face for Garnier Fructis Style Curl Shaping Gel. Her picture is in magazines all over the country. Currently working on the movie musical "The Last 5 Years" starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan, Harrier took the time to talk to Soaps.com before visiting her family in Chicago for the 4th of July holiday about how she got the role, missing out on meeting Snoop and what might be tattooed on Destiny’s back.
Soaps.com: Congratulations on getting the role.
Harrier: Thank you so much. It is really exciting and I am so happy about it.
Soaps.com: How did you get the part?
Harrier: I was called into the initial auditions, which were in New York, and I read a scene. It was just a normal audition and I didn’t think that much about it. I didn’t think I even did that great, honestly. And then I had a callback and I read with Rob Gorrie [Matthew] and there were a few other girls who did it as well. And then a few days after that I found out I got the part, so it was a pretty simple process, but it was fun.
Soaps.com: We know you’ve done lots of modeling work, but what about acting?
Harrier: I went to school for it and had done little small student films and things like that, but this is definitely my first major role and my first role as a series regular. It’s a kind of a big milestone for me.
Soaps.com: How did your family react when you got the role?
Harrier: They were super excited and proud of me. My grandma and my aunt were really into the show and at first they were freaking out just from the callback. But when they found out I was going to be on it they were just ecstatic. Everyone is really supportive and really happy for me.
Soaps.com: Was it difficult taking on a role made popular by another actress (Shenell Edmonds)?
Harrier: There was definitely pressure in the beginning because people really love Shenell and her interpretation of Destiny. She is a great actress and I really respected what she was doing. But she laid down the groundwork for Destiny's teenage years and all these things that set the stage for now, what I’m doing, which is taking Destiny into adulthood.
Soaps.com: How different is Destiny’s life as a single mom to your reality? Is it difficult playing that role?
Harrier: Yes and no because I’m not a mother and I think you don’t really know what that’s like until you experience it. But at the same time I have a younger brother and younger cousins and people I really care for, and I just transfer my feelings for them to motherhood. I love kids and little Garrett [Young] is the cutest little kid ever. He is so amazing so it is super easy to hang out with him all day. He’s the best. It’s really fun hanging out with kids and I enjoy it.
Harrier: I think you will see more of that. I love it. I think female friendships are so important and I’m such a girls’ girl. I think it is important that shows not just show romantic relationships but friendships as well. And Natalie and Destiny have a lot in common. They’re both moms. They both have kind of absentee fathers of their children. And they really support each other and help each other get through these things while having a good time, being young women and going out and drinking wine. But grounding each other at the same time too. They are still moms and have to take care of their children at the end of the day. I think it is a good friendship for both characters.
Soaps.com: We have our doubts that Destiny ended up with a butterfly tattoo. Any hints on what’s under there?
Harrier: I don’t think I can tell you that! But I will tell you there is a real tattoo and I have to get it put on every day for work. Not every day, but whenever there is something that could potentially show my back. So I am just kind of walking around with this tattoo in my life now, people wondering if I got something new down there.
Soaps.com: So do you have any real tattoos of your own?
Harrier: I do have a few. I have five, but they are all super small and you wouldn’t see them. I have a little heart on my wrist that gets covered up every day for the show. The rest are hidden.
Soaps.com: We are watching Matthew struggle with being a dad. How does Destiny deal with that?
Harrier: She wants him to be there and wishes he would be there. She always has this hope that he is going to turn around and is holding out for him and hoping that he is going to become the father that she wants him to be. And she still has that hope but she is starting to look into other romantic possibilities as well. Viewers will see Matthew possibly in a more positive light coming up. But I don’t know if they are going to end up together with a fairy tale ending or anything like that.
Soaps.com: Well there’s nothing wrong with Jeffrey (Corbin Bleu).
Harrier: Exactly! I think she just wants someone to be happy with and have a normal relationship with. Somebody who won’t reject her child.
Soaps.com: Your legs always look incredible. Any summer secrets for people to get their legs looking that great?
Harrier: Thank you so much. It is so funny because I am not a crazy mini-skirt girl and I am always in them. But I do a lot of yoga and that definitely helps. And pilates is so good for your legs, they will be burning for days after. And a lot of it is genetics that I thank my parents for.
Soaps.com: What do you like to do when you’re not shooting?
Harrier: I am still modeling as well and am busy with that this summer. I have travel plans coming up that I am pretty excited about, going to Europe and my family’s cabin in Canada for a bit. During the show when we are filming I really don’t have time for anything else. I try to see friends as much as possible and spend time with my boyfriend, hang out at home and cook a little and have friends over. But during the show that is where my head is at and it is very time consuming.
Soaps.com: What’s it like being on the return of such a beloved show?
Harrier: I am so grateful for all the support of the fans and people being open minded and welcoming to having a new Destiny. I am sure Rob would say the same about having a new Matthew. It is a little nerve-wracking coming in but everyone has been so kind and so nice and I am so grateful coming to a show that has such a strong fan base already. And to be able to work with such an incredible cast, I feel like I am learning from them all the time. I am always asking them questions. Whenever I feel like I don’t know what I am doing, Hillary [B. Smith, Nora] gives me such good advice. It has been the perfect job to come into and I couldn’t be any more grateful.
Soaps.com: So did you get to meet Snoop?
Harrier: I didn’t! I was so mad. Corbin, Rob and Kelley [Missal, Dani] all had a scene with him and I wasn’t in it. I was so jealous. I think I was there that morning at 10:00 AM and he wasn’t coming until 10:00 PM. It would have been cool but I wasn’t going to stay for 12 hours. Hopefully Snoop is in my future and will come back soon.
Read our Max Ehrich Interview for insight into "The Young And The Restless" actor. And if you haven’t been watching, beginning July 15 OLTL goes to OWN for a 10-week limited engagement. Half-hour episodes will air Monday through Thursday at 3:00 PM ET/PT.
Follow Soaps.com on Twitter @soapoperafan, "like" Soaps.com on Facebook to dish on "One Life To Live," all the other soap operas, "Dallas," "Glee," "Grey’s Anatomy," "Pretty Little Liars," "Revenge," and "Vampire Diaries."
Header photo: David Russell/The OnLine Network
- Hollie Deese