Like soccer? I do. LOVE IT. Playing, watching, doesn’t matter. So when I heard that Amazon was producing a series based on soccer star Alex Morgan’s books, I got pretty excited. I recently got to chat with the star of The Kicks, Sixx Orange, who plays the lead character, Devin.
How do you think Devin grows throughout the season?
I think Devin starts to learn how to deal with challenges and negativity a lot throughout the season. She learns in some situations you have to think about how it’s going to affect others before yourself. And I think she also begins to learn the value of friends and family. Devin is a very strong-headed and determined girl and wants to solve every issue herself but she finds out that sometimes you need others to help support you and get you through the rough patches.
How does playing soccer for a television show differ from playing competitively?
Soccer is very different on television than competitively! In the real game, you don’t have any redoes, if you make a mistake you can’t take it back you just have to make up for it. On TV if you mess up a move or a shot you can just film another take. Also in competitive soccer, you don’t have to hit marks or look at different angles. When filming a soccer game we have to hit marks on the field and shoot at a certain spot of the net. It’s pretty tricky but a fun challenge! (laughs).
I’ve read that you used your life experiences to help get into character. Was it difficult to channel those experiences?
For me using my personal experiences makes everything easier. The reason why is because even when I’m playing a character I am putting my essence into it. I love being able to relate Devin’s situations to mine because I feel like it makes my performance more honest and genuine.
What is it like playing a character written by an amazing athlete like Alex Morgan?
It’s a dream come true for me to be playing a character that Alex Morgan created. I have looked up to Alex since I was little! Whenever she would come play in Maryland my dad and I would go watch her. Little did I know I would be bringing her books to life.
What was your audition process like?
So I got the audition for Devin in September of 2014 and I was stoked! I had my first audition for it and it was so fun! I obviously read some sides but they also had me pretend to get a goal and celebrate. Not only was I screaming and chanting in the room but so were the casting directors! Then I got a callback and met the director Elizabeth Allen Rosenbaum and again did some sides and some soccer moves. Finally, I made it to the testing for the show and met many people from Amazon and our writer David Babcock! I was extremely nervous because I was so close! That same day I got the call that I got the role of Devin… no words can describe my feeling at that moment.
Have you read the book series? If so, how does closely does the show follow the books?
I have read 3 of the books! The show is somewhat close to the books but we changed a few things. In the books, I have a sister but in the show, I have a brother named Bailey. Also in the show, we really push the girl power and teamwork whereas in the book there are some love interests and other teenage school situations.
What was the most challenging part of filming?
The most challenging part of filming was for sure the soccer. As I said previously in order to get the right shots we had to hit certain marks. For example, I at one point have to hit the crossbar in the show. But not JUST hit the crossbar, they put a piece of tape on the crossbar and that’s where the ball had to hit. (laughs) It took me a few tries but eventually I got it! While the soccer was challenging it was also my favorite part!
What can we expect if there is a second season?
You can expect a lot of change. We cover a lot of events in the first season that I can’t spill but if we end up having a second season you can expect Devin having to face a situation that comes with the downfall of poor decisions.
We here at TNWU are all proudly self-identify as nerdy – what do you ‘nerd’ out about?
I nerd out about music. I pretty much know every song! My friends literally will yell at me because if a song plays on the radio or comes up on their phone I just bust out singing! (laughs) I will also get super interested in an artist and then do a ton of research on them and get to know their journey as a musician which is super fun and inspiring for me!
The Kicks will begin streaming on Amazon on August 26th, so if you like soccer then you should definitely give it a shot! (Pun absolutely intended).