Joy Osmanski, the alluring, graceful and jovial actor, dancer and mother of three has established herself as one of Hollywood’s hardest-working entertainers with her new series “Stargirl” (recently renewed for a second season) now streaming with new episodes every Monday on the DC Universe streaming app, as well as Tuesdays, on The CW. Joy can also be seen in FOX’s newest Animation Domination series “Duncanville,” which has already been renewed for a second season.
Earning stellar reviews from Rotten Tomatoes, The New York Times, and Collider, the action-packed DC Universe & CW’s “Stargirl” has won the hearts of superhero fanatics, and viewers across the country. Joy portrays the infamous villainess ‘Paula Brooks,” aka Tigress. Best known for her skills in hand-to-hand combat and extensive weapons background, ‘Tigress’ is one of DC Universe’s deadliest non-superpower villains. CW’s “Stargirl” tells the story of high school sophomore ‘Courtney Whitmore,’ who discovers a powerful cosmic staff. After learning that her stepfather Pat Dugan used to be a hero sidekick, she becomes the inspiration for a new generation of superheroes. The new hard-hitting superhero drama also includes Luke Wilson, Amy Smart, and Brec Bassinger.
Born in South Korea, and brought to the United States when she was adopted at a young age by her American parents, Joy had a drive and appreciation for the arts from the age of 3 when she began ballet lessons in her hometown of Olympia, Washington. From the very beginning of school, Joy was moved up from kindergarten to first grade after a few weeks and would be hyper-competitive academically throughout her entire school career. After taking multiple college courses in her senior year of high school, Joy would continue on to university at Principia College and graduate within 3 years with a degree in creative writing and studio art. She would then begin her career as a graphic designer and moved to Boston. After a year on the east coast, Joy moved to San Francisco where she created her own graphic design company. Having continued to dance through both high school and college, Joy continued to work on her ballet and dance skills and would book professional gigs on the side. After seeing a notice for auditions for a local production of “Our Town,” and missing her performing arts side, she auditioned for the play and was cast in the lead role. Following her performance, Joy auditioned and received her MFA from UC San Diego, one of the top three professional actor training programs in the country. After relocating to Los Angeles, with her husband Corey Brill, Joy has continued worked steadily in theater, television, and film, booking roles in hit projects including FOX’s “The Loop,” Netflix’s “Santa Clarita Diet,” Freeform’s “The Fosters, FIRED UP, and ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS: THE SQUEAKQUEL, to name a few.
FilmCentral Magazine recently caught up with Joy to discuss her journey in the entertainment industry and here’s what went down:
Can you tell us more about yourself? How did you get started in the entertainment industry?
I led a couple of different lives before finding acting, and in retrospect, I’m glad I did. When I coach and teach actors, I encourage them to pursue a life rich in experience, to be curious about everything. To travel. I needed all the various jobs I’ve had (ghostwriter, photographer, graphic designer, to name a few) to motivate me toward the entertainment industry. Even though it was a creative profession, graphic design didn’t thrill or challenge me. At the time, I didn’t quite have the language to describe what I was seeking, but after I auditioned for a local play I had an aha moment.
What do you like most about acting?
The collaboration. I love working with a team of creative people toward a common goal.
Can you tell us about your role in Stargirl as Paula Brooks, aka Tigress?
It’s been so fun to play a dual character. We all have various aspects of our personalities, but to have a chance to play such clearly delineated roles has been a pleasure. Exploring the public side of Paula versus the private side of Tigress is incredibly satisfying.
What sort of person, if any could relate this character?
I would venture to say we can all relate to Paula/Tigress. Hopefully not her methods, but certainly her ability to put on one face for society and another for her true life.
How is this character like you? Different?
In terms of her passion for her family, her future, the well-being of her child, I am very much like Paula. I appreciate how direct she is, how she cuts through the bullshit. As Tigress, I love how she integrates dance, grace, and artistry into her physicality. But I certainly hope I’m motivated more by love and compassion and start from a place of wanting to understand, instead of just attacking.
Besides yourself, what celebrity would you like to see tackle this character?
It would be fun to see what Daniel Day-Lewis would do with this character. With his propensity for going deep into a character, maybe he’d crawl around on all fours, even between takes.
Besides yourself, which actor/s in this series is going to blow people away?
I can honestly say that every single actor involved in Stargirl is stellar. I am so honored to be in this company of talented people.
What’s the biggest challenge to taking on this role?
For me, it was the intense physical preparation. I had about three months to train and get as strong as I could. My exercise history has been sporadic, at best, so this was the first time I had an extended workout and nutrition plan. It fundamentally changed my life, and I’m so grateful to have the chance to dive into that kind of discipline.
If you could play any other character in this series, who would it be?
Grundy. When else would I have a chance to play an enormous, misunderstood zombie??
What has been the most memorable experience of your career so far?
Suiting up as Tigress for the first time, and finding myself on an enormous set, doing stunt work while explosions were going off all around me. Sensory overload. It was incredible.
Who have been the most interesting people you’ve met so far?
I have loved meeting all the stunt people I’ve had the privilege of working with. They have all been, without exception, kind, generous, and badass. There is a unique combination of confidence and humility in being a stunt person, it seems to me. I find that fascinating.
What are your future plans? Inside your career or out of it.
To continue to wear my mask and be part of the solution toward getting our country out of the current height of the pandemic. Educating myself and voting for a better future.