25 Quick-Fire Questions with Kathleen Robertson



Estimated Reading Time 4 Minutes

A native of Hamilton, Ontario, who now lives in L.A., Kathleen Robertson is a showrunner, producer, writer and actor. Her upcoming, six-episode series Swimming With Sharks premieres at SXSW 2022 and launches on Roku in April. Her incredible career is vast and varied, with more credits to her name than we could ever count (you probably even remember her from Beverly Hills 90210!). We caught up with Kathleen, who is also mom to two boys, to ask her everything from what she loves most about her job to her parenting superpower.

What is your idea of the perfect day?
Sleep in til 8:30. Nespresso and a Nutella crepe. Being with my kids in nature. A massage. A great documentary. A bath. A foot rub. Should I keep going?

Why did you choose your career?
Hmmm. I always knew I wanted to do something creative. I was determined to be an actor. And then in my 30s, I became determined to be a writer and a showrunner. Directing is next.

What do you love most about your job?
I loved editing Swimming With Sharks. It was incredibly rewarding. I love watching great actors say my words. And I do still love acting and will always find ways to continue doing that.

What has been the hardest part of building your career?
It’s all hard! It never gets easier. There really are not enough hours in the day. And it is really never over. It’s always about what’s next. Each year is a blank slate and I have to mold it and will it into happening.

Who was/is your mentor?
Larry Moss was an acting teacher in Los Angeles who really changed the trajectory of my career. I was really young and on the biggest show in the world (90210), and I had been acting since I was a kid. But I quit 90210 after three seasons and went to train with him. He helped me form a stronger sense of who I was and what I wanted for my life.

Who is your favourite Canadian?
Justin Bieber. Obviously.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Literally. Own it. Holistically. OMG. LOL.

Which words or phrases do you dislike when other people overuse?
I’m burnt on all the female-centric ones, like #bosslady, #bossbitch and #badass. Even though I totally still use them!

Who or what is the greatest love of your life?
My husband. And my boys. And my mom and dad.

When and where were you happiest?
Right here. Right now. Four Seasons Wailea didn’t suck either.

Which talent would you most like to have?
I am not athletic. I’d like to be able to snowboard. Or play tennis.

Who are your heroes in real life?
My parents. For real.

What is your motto?
Not sure I have one…..is that one?

What do you always have in your fridge?
Sliced jalapeños and Parmagianno-Reggiano cheese.

How would you describe yourself as a parent?
A bit hippy/granola. I allow and encourage my kids to be exactly who they are. No judgement. I’m very loving and want my kids to feel that I am proud of them. I definitely don’t believe in a strict/withholding love style of parenting. The world is a hard enough place. I want my kids to feel that home is a safe space where they can fall down and make mistakes.

What is your parenting superpower?
I love to talk and get deep with my boys. I think they both feel seen and respected by me. That makes me happy.

What is your favourite memory of your own parents?
Too many to mention. My mom reading to me every night before bed. My dad taking me to antique shows on the weekends. Exposing me to art and cool things. Both of my parents believed in me 100 percent. They allowed me to take risks and make unconventional choices. They never made me feel that I couldn’t do anything I wanted to do.

What is a tradition from your childhood that you’ve carried on with your own kids?
I read to my kids before bed too. And I try and expose them to everything, to see what they are into and what they gravitate towards. When we aren’t working or they aren’t in school, we are together. Playing board games. Watching movies. Cooking. Exploring. They know that we genuinely love spending time with them.

What do you love most about being a parent, and what do you dislike most?
I love how funny they are, and how much they make me laugh. My son William is now 13 and I’m loving who he is becoming. He teaches me so much about new design and fashion and music. He keeps me connected to youth culture and I love it. I definitely dislike the lack of sleep.

What has surprised you most about being a parent?
Well, I think everyone tells you, “Your life will never be the same again” and it’s beyond true. Everything changes.

Favourite family vacation and why?
Hmmmm. It wasn’t really a “vacation,” but we spent the summer in Parry Sound while I was filming a series for Netflix and it was heaven. We rented a log cabin on the water and had a boat. It was pretty magical.

What one trait or value are you most trying to instil in your children?
Work ethic. And of course, kindness.

What one trait are you hoping to avoid?
Negativity. “Glass half empty” people aren’t much fun.

Favourite family summer activity?

Definitely Georgian Bay Collingwood boat life!

Favourite family winter activity?

My boys (including my husband) all snowboard. I like to après.

Instagram: @kathleenrobert7

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