Native New Yorker Rebecca Knox has garnered attention for her role as Litchfield’s newest inmate, badass Tina Swope, on Netflix’s Orange is the New Black. But Rebecca’s talents extend beyond the camera, with Knox playing a big role in her family’s business, a Mezcal company called Doña Sarita. Here, we chat with the actress about what to expect from OITNB, how she manages her different roles, and her favorite local hot spots.
You’ve joined the cast of recently-launched sixth season of Orange is the New Black. How does it feel to join such a well-established series and cast of characters?
REBECCA KNOX: I am grateful beyond words. I couldn’t have imagined I would be so lucky to join a cast and series I had watched so diligently for many years.
Tell us about your character, Tina Swope, and how she fits into the dynamic at Litchfield?
RK: Tina Swope is feisty as hell! She follows the pack but she's kinda freaky so people don’t mess with her.
What can fans of the show expect from Season 6 and beyond?
RK: For those who have watched season 6, the new environment for the Litchfield inmates takes them all for a spin. You will notice some new inmates, Tina included. For Season 7—well, you will just have to wait and see!
Aside from acting, you are also a businesswoman, and help manage your family’s Mezcal company, Doña Sarita. What made you want to get involved in the family business?
RK: Yes I do! My parents started the company a few years ago and I noticed they were struggling with finding ways to make the brand more youthful. Being that I know the NYC party scene well, I teamed up with some friends to revamp the brand. It was a lot of fun to get involved, especially when it is a family endeavor. I have taken a backseat lately due to my filming schedule. But you will be hearing more about DS Mezcal soon!
How do you take your learnings and experience from one trade and apply it to the other?
RK: The biggest things I have learned are professionalism and communication. They span from acting to mezcal in many ways. As long as I keep my word, communicate and stay calm when things are difficult, I can get anything done and I earn the trust of the person I am working with! It is important for sure.
What’s next for you? Any upcoming projects that you are excited for?
RK: I am currently in the editing phases of my first screenplay Cavity. I am very excited to share it with the world once it is finished! I am also filming Season 7 of OITNB. I am a happy woman right now.
You are an East Hampton native. What do you love most about the Hamptons?
RK: I love the off-season most. It is beautiful and fun in the summer when everything is an endless party, but the most beautiful time out there, for me, is when I can truly relax and no one is around. The natural habitat gets a bit trampled on during the summer months, so it's important for the beaches to get a rest from the constant influx of people, as well as the locals!
What are your go-to spots out East?
RK: I love the Beacon in Sag Harbor—my favorite restaurant out there for sure. I also love Hampton Chutney for a good dosa.
Season 6 of Orange is The New Black is currently streaming on Netflix.
Photography by: Portrait by Emily Lambert; Beach photo by Bree Rose