Suits star Amanda Schull says goodbye to Katrina Bennett

SUITS -- "The Greater Good" Episode 813 -- Pictured: Amanda Schull as Katrina Bennett -- (Photo by: Shane Mahood/USA Network)
SUITS -- "The Greater Good" Episode 813 -- Pictured: Amanda Schull as Katrina Bennett -- (Photo by: Shane Mahood/USA Network) /

This week’s Suits finale was the culmination of a journey for Katrina Bennett, and Amanda Schull spoke about how she and her character have both grown.

When USA‘s Suits finale aired Wednesday, it was a turning point for Katrina Bennett. Of all of the show’s characters, Katrina has worn the most hats and gone through some of the most changes over nine seasons. The last episode was the culmination of everything she’d been through.

Amanda Schull connected with Hidden Remote to discuss the experience of filming the finale and playing Katrina one last time. She also revealed what’s next for her after Suits, and how far she’s come over the last few years between this show and her starring role on SyFy‘s 12 Monkeys.

Check out our interview with Amanda Schull below, and if you missed the series finale of Suits, you can now watch it either on demand or through Amazon Prime Video.

Hidden Remote: You’ve portrayed Katrina Bennett since the second season. What was it like when you shot the finale and were saying goodbye to this character?

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Amanda Schull: Because it was Aaron’s [series creator Aaron Korsh] first official directing experience—he’d co-direct many episodes—andbecause it’s the finale of a nine-season show, we took a little more time with the finale. That was actually really lovely, because we got a lot of time to work on each scene and try different things out.

I got to experience each scene not like, “Oh, suddenly it’s over, and that scene is done, and that was the last time I’ll ever be in my office. That was the last time I’ll ever have a scene with so and so.” I really savored each moment because they were a little bit more luxurious than a regular eight-day episode.

HR: When the finale starts, Katrina has just been fired by Faye Richardson (Denise Crosby). It’s actually the second time she’s been fired from the firm. So what was your reaction when you saw that she’d been fired again?

Schull: Pretty much that. In the script for [the finale], there was a reference to the earlier firing, the firing Jessica doled out many seasons ago, but that was cut. When I read that, I was like, “Oh, not again Katrina,” but I knew that Aaron would find a way to tie it in to make sense for tonight’s episode.

HR: She’s had a lot of job changes, though. Suits introduced her as an assistant district attorney, and she briefly went to work for Rand Kaldor Zane, too. How have you played her through all of these different roles on the show?

Schull: It’s interesting, because with each job description comes a different level of power or insecurity or security or strength. That really dictates how she goes into each scene. That’s something that she said in the [previous] episode to Harvey, when he started sort of berating her. She said something to the effect of, “You can’t talk to me like that. I’m the senior partner.”

In my head, the rest of the sentence—it was not written out—was, “And I deserve to know what’s going on,” because she does feel like she’s established this level of not just placement within the ranks of the firm, but also rapport with the people at the top, the leadership of the firm. He kind of slices that all down when he speaks to her as though she’s just the same junior partner she was so many years prior. The interactions are definitely dictated by the rank she holds.

HR: But ultimately she chose to come back to the firm. What do you think Katrina has found here that she didn’t find it any of her other workplaces?

Schull: I think Louis [Litt, played by Rick Hoffman] was a big part of bringing her back from Zane. When he came to her, he said, “You’ll be the youngest senior partner we’ve ever had there,” and she believed him.

She knows his word is good. She likes the idea of that kind of power. She likes the idea of climbing the ranks as quickly as she possibly can, because she believes in her strength and her intelligence. I think that was probably the determining factor—because she had his word. She knew she’d be able to rise to a level and have the type of clientele that she believes she’s capable of handling.

HR: You’ve spent parts of eight seasons on Suits, including now as a series regular. As Katrina has grown, what have you taken away from working on the series?

Schull: It is an amazing group of people. I learned something from every single one of them with every single scene. Even with the new additions of Dule [Hill] with Katie [Katherine Heigl] the past two seasons, I have learned so much from the two of them as well.

Also, just on a very superficial level, I learned about the law, which was fascinating and which I already had an affinity for. My father actually is a corporate attorney, which is what Katrina is. So, that was interesting to learn a little bit more about it that way.

The type of show that this is, is not like anything I’ve ever done before. It’s quick, and it’s smart. It’s exciting and dynamic. That was a lot of fun—to get to be part of that, to play within this really specific world that all truly stems from Aaron Korsh’s brilliant mind.

HR: One of the most rewarding things about Katrina’s evolution on Suits has been watching where you’ve taken her and seeing your performance grow. Between this character and playing Cassie Railly on 12 Monkeys, has your career changed?

Schull: It has changed. I feel very, very fortunate for those changes. I think with both Cassie and Katrina, I somehow by the gifts of the casting gods above was lucky enough to get to play roles that are so challenging and delicate in very specific ways and grew. Both of them grew and took turns that I didn’t foresee and that I was lucky enough to be able to bring to life and try to hash through.

Neither one of them were tropes. They could very easily have been so basic, and they were both written and created specifically, originally, by men. Both of those men, [12 Monkeys showrunner] Terry [Matalas] and Aaron, are so creative and so comfortable with their creativity and what they have developed that they allowed me to play and sort of grow with the characters as well.  I’m so lucky to have had the opportunity with both of those women.

HR: When you look back, are there specific Katrina Bennett moments on Suits that you’ll remember most?

Schull: I have a lot of great memories and a lot of really interesting things. Some of the stuff in the very beginning was fun, because it was nothing like I had ever done before. I wasn’t a regular, so I was able to be a little bit kind of off the wall and just a little bit weird.

A lot of the scenes with Rick were just bizarre and quirky. I love when Louis and Katrina have their strange, quippy back and forth. Their references to “winter is coming” and him being the Night’s Watch, and it being completely straight-faced. Just their bizarre relationship brought me so much joy over the years. But that’s just one small element of things that I’ll miss.

HR: What comes next for Amanda Schull now that Suits is over?

Schull: About four days after my last day on Suits, I went down and did an episode of MacGyver. I might be going back. I don’t know yet.

HR: So ultimately, what do you walk away from Suits with? Are there any last words that you want to say about the whole experience?

Schull: I can tell you that when I read the finale for Suits, I did cry. It might not be what makes everybody else cry, but there’s a moment for Katrina that really got me. I didn’t expect it to get me. It was totally unanticipated, and I think it’s because I feel so strongly about her.

That’s largely because of the gifts of Aaron and everyone affiliated with the show. The writers—Ethan Drogin is who originally created the very first script with Katrina in it [and] there have been so many other wonderful writers along the way.

There is a moment in there that made me just so happy for her, which was not something I’d ever really experienced as an actor. Usually I can separate myself, but at that moment, I just felt so strongly with what she was experiencing. That was really unique.

Also, I would love to just say I’ve never experienced a fandom as devoted and kind and welcoming and appreciative and lovely as the Suits fans. It has been remarkable, especially towards the end, with people accepting Katrina and the last couple of years of her heartbreak and her growth and everything. It’s been so nice to see the response on social media.

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Watch the Suits finale now on demand or on Amazon Video.