The Fosters Spoilers: Maia Mitchell on Callie and Brandon’s “Tragic” Romance and “Intense Inner Turmoil” — Exclusive
The Fosters never fails to make us cry, and tonight’s winter premiere (“The Honeymoon”) is sure to pull at our heartstrings when runaway Callie makes a tough decision that changes everything.
Wetpaint Entertainment chatted with Maia Mitchell ahead of the premiere, and the 20-year-old told us that Callie’s decision to run away has huge repercussions for the Foster family — particularly Brandon, who will start to blame himself for Callie’s departure. But when Callie finds herself in a group home for teenage delinquents, will Brandon be there to help her through her past demons? Or will a new character, played by Rosie O’Donnell, help Callie see the light?
Last we saw of Callie, she ran away after the wedding. So where is Callie when we return?
She’s with Wyatt, and they’re kind of on this road trip in the desert, and the family is at home. It is the moms’ honeymoon, but when they realize that Callie has run away, the family is forced to deal with the repercussions of Callie leaving. Jude feels guilty for yelling at her. Brandon feels guilty for kissing her. He thinks she left to be with Wyatt. Callie and Wyatt’s relationship is really interesting; it’s not quite romantic, it’s not quite sexual, but it’s really deep and very loving. You see them kind of struggle with that and what that means for both of them. And in the end, Callie just seems completely lost. In the first episode, she has to make a really tough decision. It’s the last scene in this first episode back, and you’re mind is kind of blown by what she decides to do.
Let’s talk about that kiss between Brandon and Callie. It was such a huge moment in the finale, and it’s obviously going to have a lot of repercussions.
Yeah, it’s all very complicated and convoluted. She really is stuck. She has run away from the family. She’s run away from the foster system, and her plan is to live independently. She wants to completely separate herself from the family entirely, which doesn’t quite work out, as you’ll find out. Callie actually gets sent to a group home, where there’s a very strict routine. It’s basically for girls who have been through juvie and for troubled youth who have been through the system. It’s run by this director named Rita, who is played by Rosie O’Donnell. She is basically in charge of this home that Callie’s part of. This home is on lockdown, and there’s strict visitation, so Callie and Brandon aren’t allowed to see each other. They’ve just given into their feelings for one another and he’s kind of the one person she can trust who she feels safe around, so it’s really quite tragic. We see them attempt to keep that connection going.
Now they’re more star-crossed than ever!
Right! Let’s hope they’re not exactly like Romeo and Juliet.
I know you have a lot of scenes with Rosie. Tell us about the relationship between Callie and Rita.
It’s a really beautiful relationship, and Rosie played Rita perfectly. We actually went to a real group home and met a lot of girls who these characters were based off of, and Rosie was perfectly cast as Rita. She’s a mentor to Callie, and Callie hasn’t really had that many adults in her life who she’s been able to trust and let in. Now that Stef and Lena are out of the picture, she needs someone who can send her on the right path. So you see a really beautiful relationship open up. Rita forces Callie to face some of these things in her past that are forcing her to make these bad decisions and sending her on this reckless run.
I’m not one to go up to people that I’m a fan of because I would feel strange and awkward. And I’d rather not meet them in real life because I have them on such a pedestal and I don’t want that ruined in any way, so I often don’t approach celebrities. But the coolest thing ever happened to me backstage. When I was standing in the green room, and this massive, mad-looking man came up to me, and was like, “You! I have to take a picture with you! You’re Maia Mitchell, right?” And I was like, “Yeah. Oh my gosh! You’re Dave Grohl!” So he takes a picture with me, and then said the most incredible thing: “My kids love you. I have a 7-year-old who watches [Teen Beach Movie] all the time, and listens to the soundtrack. The soundtrack has actually inspired her to sing. When I was young, I was listening to the Beatles and they inspired me to sing, and now my kids are listening to you.” My mind was literally blown. It was the coolest stretch of truth ever.
Speaking of music, we saw Callie on her guitar quite a bit in the first half of Season 1. Are we going to see any more singer-songwriter moments?
You definitely see her explore her artsier side. It takes a little bit of time because she’s going through a lot in the first part of the [winter] season. She really is dealing with intense inner turmoil, but she’s a very creative person, and you see her open up to that side of herself, especially through her photography. She really dives into that. I think music, for Callie, was the way her and her mom related to each other when her mom was alive, and now Brandon and her are relating through music. So maybe we’ll see Brandon and Callie’s relationship evolve and music will go with that. You never know!
So there are more duets in their future?
I hope so! That was really fun to shoot. That was all done live, too, which we were stoked about.
Are you excited for The Fosters to return? What are you most looking forward to this season? Sound off in the comments!
Catch the winter premiere of The Fosters on Monday, January 13 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC Family.
Crystal Bell is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident fangirl for all things Pretty Little Liars. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!