Q: Please explain your resolution about movies.
A: Three hundred sixty-five movies, 365 days. What brought it about was the year before I had a Netflix DVD that sat on my television for an entire year that I never opened. The $125 DVD, because I was paying $9.95 a month. My New Year's resolution was I am watching a movie a day.
Q: What was the worst?
A: One of the crew members brought me a DVD and didn't tell me anything about it. "The Terror of Tiny Town." It was amazing! It was so bad it was good.
Q: You attended Bucknell University on a basketball scholarship. Do you still play?
A: Yes, in the Elite Entertainment Basketball League ... anybody in the industry can play. It is not about being great. Me, personally, I am not looking to show how great I am; I am just looking to have a fun time. I love watching the other guys, some of the guys who aren't as good. They still have a great time feeling like they are something great.
Q: Your character, Samuel, is from Senegal. Are you doing that accent or going more along the lines of your parents' Nigerian accents?
A: I am not doing Nigerian because it is very sing-songy. There is a lot of pitch to a Nigerian accent, whereas the Senegalese accent, it is very flat. Their influence is French. Because the character is such a worldly character, he is studying English literature at the University of Illinois, and he loves Shakespeare. I was doing a Senegalese accent but feeling I didn't have to be dead-on because he has been other places.
Q: You're from New Hampshire, but here you are in Los Angeles. How did that happen?
A: I graduated high school when I was 17, spent a year traveling around North and West Africa. When I returned from that trip, I didn't know what I wanted to do. I was living up in San Francisco at the time, decided I was going to move out to New York where my brother was in school. So I packed up my things and started driving east, got as far as Los Angeles. ... I kept thinking, I'll just stick around for another week, couple of weeks, and it just kept extending.
Q: What did you like about L.A.?
A: I was very hellbent on carving out my own path. At this point, I didn't know a soul here in Los Angeles except one friend. I like the idea of being someplace where none of my people had been before and really figuring it out for myself. I felt I planted my flag here in L.A., made it my own.
Q: Do your friends like your show?
A: It's the kind of show that even snobby types -- of whom I have many in my immediate circle; I don't know why I hang out with so many snobs, we find each other -- they've given me the benefit of the doubt. They've found themselves liking it against their better judgment. Once people allow themselves to open up to it a little bit, it gets under your skin.
Kimberly Gambale of 'Jersey Couture' on Oxygen
Q: Why do you think New Jersey has become the go-to state for reality shows?
A: The people in New Jersey, maybe they have larger-than-life personalities. For us, we didn't have a title for our show. And when "Jersey Shore" came on, (an executive with the show said) "You are in New Jersey. We will just name it 'Jersey Couture.' "
Q: How do you feel about how Jersey is represented to the rest of the world?
A: We don't have that drunken stupor and the negative energy. We are the only reality show where everybody works.
Q: How about "Cake Boss," and he's in Hoboken?
A: OK, he is like us.
Q: How did this show come about?
A: It was March of 2009. ... A lady walks in and says, "I need a dress for my daughter's wedding." She was nasty and abrupt. My mom says, "You are going to help her." And she is with her daughter, the bride, and everything I am pulling out is "No! No! No!" She didn't know what she wanted, and she had a broken foot and had put on a few pounds. Just by talking with her, I was trying to get out of her why she was unhappy. Minutes later, my mom designed her a gown, we had a dress on her ... and the daughter goes, "I am a TV producer. I would love to do a show on how you do your business. As soon as I finish my honeymoon, I am going to call you." And she did call. It was just about providing good customer service.