Myha’la Herrold interview: ‘Industry’
“She’s got this incredibly aggressive confidence, whether it’s true or not,” Myha’la Herrold reveals about her character Harper in HBO’s freshman drama series “Industry.” Herrold plays the show’s central character, an ambitious recent graduate working at the prestigious Pierpoint investment bank who goes to some extreme lengths to secure a permanent post. Watch our exclusive video interview above.
Harper experiences a rollercoaster of emotions over the show’s eight-episode first season, and Herrold needed to balance the character’s “tenacity and commitment” with Harper’s “massive secret that could jeopardize her job.” Across Harper’s many successes and failures, Herrold tried to “maintain this inner churning and desperation” that Harper continuously feels. “All of these characters are desperately searching for some kind of personal connection amongst this emotionless environment,” she adds.
Herrold praises co-star Ken Leung – who plays Harper’s manager and slightly menacing mentor Eric – as an “incredibly kind and generous” scene partner, saying, “Working with Ken is one of the greatest joys” of the role. She singles out the scene between Harper and Eric at the end of the fourth episode “Sesh” as “really rewarding” because they have a mutual understanding that their characters are both underdogs. She also shares her appreciation for her “amazing” colleague Marisa Abela, who plays Harper’s friend and rival Yasmin. “Both of them have these qualities that they both equally respect and resent,” she shares about their characters’ relationship.
On Harper’s RIF, or “reduction in force,” Day speech, Herrold shares that she “felt bad” for her character, who is so overcome with panic that she is unable to speak in this defining moment of Harper’s career. “That was a good day, a hard day, but a good day, and I did in fact feel relieved when we were finished shooting it,” she notes with a laugh.
“Industry” has been renewed for a second season, and though she cannot reveal much about the new episodes, Herrold does share that “we’re gonna learn a little bit more about Harper’s history in detail,” and looks forward to “filling some holes of why she is the way she is.”