Ever since That 70s Show was unleashed in 2000, viewers across the globe were immediately captivated by its nostalgia and teenage listlessness. Uniquely relatable, yet escapist in its time period – it was only a matter of time before the series would be brought back with a bang. And that it did; That 90s Show released to a flurry of eagerly awaiting viewers. Seeing the likes of Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, Kurtwood Smith and Debra Jo Rupp all revive their iconic roles – That 90s Show was built for greatness.
While seasoned talent is abound, actor Callie Haverda emerges as a fresh face. Taking the lead as Leia Forman, Eric and Donna’s daughter, Haverda carries the torch into 1995. Centring on Leia and her antics while visiting her grandparents Red and Kitty for the summer in Point Place, we return to that very same basement where it all started.
With 90s nostalgia having everyone in a chokehold at the moment, the timing of That 90s Show couldn’t be more perfect. And, who better to lead the way than Haverda? Hailing from sun-soaked LA, the young actor just oozes cool. Luckily for us, we were able to catch Haverda – and talk to her about the whirlwind of a ride she’s had. From maintaining balance, and her star-studded co-stars to facing challenges in the industry – all bases are covered.
Head below to read our interview…
Can you tell us about your role in the upcoming Netflix series That 90s Show?
My character Leia is the granddaughter of Red and Kitty Forman and the daughter of Eric and Donna. She’s craving adventure, is a little awkward, but definitely comes into herself over the course of the show.
How did you land the role of Leia Foreman in the spin-off of the popular 90s sitcom That 70s Show?
I got a self-tape request in October of 2021. I watched a few clips on YouTube of That 70s Show and learned all my lines. I played the character very natural and grounded and that ended up being what made the creators hooked! When I got a retake request I went more into depth on Leia’s lineage, and studied her parents but I really didn’t want her to just be a copy of Eric or Donna. It also helps that naturally I am like both, Leia really is the perfect role! There was a director/showrunner zoom and a chemistry read with Ashley and Mace and then I booked it!
How does it feel to be part of such a highly-anticipated reboot series?
I will say it was very intimidating at first. Everyone in the industry talks about “imposter syndrome” and I definitely had it in the beginning. But there was also a lot of satisfaction. I’ve been working since I was six so to finally land a role like this one on a show with such a huge fan base was incredible! As soon as we began filming, though all of the legacy cast accepted us with open arms, there’s a ton of support from everyone – even fans, so all I really feel now is gratitude and excitement to see what comes next.
How would you describe your character, Leia Foreman, and her story arc in the series?
I love Leia’s arc throughout the series. The writers definitely gave me a lot to work with. She’s an extremely relatable character to me, and hopefully fans as well, even though she’s living in the 90s. She grows so much over the season and really finds herself and her confidence (in those scenes I had a lot of fun channeling Donna). In the beginning she’s unsure and awkward but with the relationships she makes, she gains trust in her friends as well as herself. But another thing I love about her is she still stays very true to herself and I played into her quirky nature throughout all ten episodes. It’s only been one summer so how much should she have changed?
Can you talk about the experience of working with some of the original That 70s Show cast members?
It was truly insane and inspiring. They were all so lovely. It was also so relieving seeing how much they supported the show and how excited they were for each of us. They were all in mine and my cast mates and they know how special it is what we have.
How does it feel to be a leading actress in a major Netflix series?
It really is a dream come true. This is something I’ve been working towards for a very long time so to finally be rewarded for my hard work is a wonderful thing to experience.
How do you see That 90s Show appealing to both fans of the original series and a new generation of viewers?
What I love about our show is that we’re all a bunch of teenagers playing teenagers and having fun. That totally comes across in our performances and I believe new generations of teens will be able to relate and see themselves represented in each of us. Old fans will love the nostalgic vibes, the cameos, and hopefully will be able to see the new magic we recreate that is reminiscent of the 70s.
How do you think That 90s Show will help to shape the pop culture of today?
The 90s are already making a comeback but I definitely think we’ll see a much bigger interest in the music and fashion of the decade. I personally hope it will bring back the authentic humor and comedy that was so prevalent in sitcoms, maybe we’ll even see more live audience shows making a comeback.
Can you tell us about any upcoming projects or roles you’re excited about?
There are some things on the horizon that I can’t quite talk about yet, but I can say that I’ve written a few screenplays that hopefully I’ll turn into something soon.
Can you talk about your experience as a rising actress in LA?
To hear a question that refers to me as a rising actress in LA is very surreal. But since my time in the “spotlight” is just beginning, I feel there is a lot more I will learn and navigate. What I can say is having a team of business partners, family, and friends that I trust has helped me a TON. They keep me grounded which is something you definitely need to do in this world.
How do you see your career evolving in the future?
Again, I feel that this is just the beginning and so much more will hopefully happen as I get older. I think developing characters in other films and shows, playing parts that are different and exciting is something I hope to do. Fingers crossed for more seasons of 90s and photo shoots! I’ve been loving the editorials.
How do you balance your personal life with your professional acting career?
Honestly I kind of don’t! I think balance is a very peculiar thing because there will always be some kind of sacrifice you’ll have to make. After the release of the show I experienced this, every day was stacked with interviews, photo shoots, events, but I also had to make time for myself and my friends and school. It’s been a struggle, but I’m just taking it one day at a time.
Can you tell us about any challenges you’ve faced as a rising actress and how you’ve overcome them?
I think the industry is a very competitive place, especially for girls, but only if you make it that way. I try to make friends with everyone I meet but that feeling isn’t always reciprocated. A huge thing that means a lot in this world is support so finding people that support you and vice versa has been a top of the list thing for me. Everyone is doing the same thing and at the end of the day we all want the same things as actors and that can be a good or bad thing, it just depends on how you decide to view it.
What advice would you give to aspiring actors and actresses?
Something I’ve had to teach myself over the years is to not overthink it. ‘It’ being roles, auditions, conversations, if it is meant to be it will happen and you will make it happen. Overthinking is always what got me down about a project or a callback with a director. Just let it be.