Interview: Camila Nakagawa – Exclusive
MTV’s hit reality competition series The Challenge is currently airing the 25th season. The show returned this year with a new format. “Free Agents” allows a combination of competitors both new and old to fight for themselves. With no partners or teams to hold them back, the contestants can finally prove once and for all that they have what it takes. One person who has consistently proven that over the years is Camila Nakagawa. Always showing she is full of heart and determination, Camila has confirmed that she is one of the best and most dedicated competitors the series has seen.
We had the opportunity to chat with Camila about her time on The Challenge: Free Agents, what was really going through her mind in that final elimination round, and what’s next for her.
Read on for our exclusive interview with Camila Nakagawa below:
Were you excited that this was finally a Challenge format that meant you could rely on yourself instead of others?
Camila Nakagawa: Well, actually it sounded like an individual format challenge more than it actually was. You didn’t really have to rely on others as much when it came down to alliances, but when it came down to the actual challenges, it kind of sucked that you didn’t know who you were going to have to rely on, since every challenge you were partnered with someone new.
Before appearing on the show, were you a fan of The Challenges on MTV?
Camila: No. The first time I ever watched The Challenge was when I watched my first show ‘Cutthroat’.
I know you’ve mentioned before that you were struggling with staying in the game at the time and wanted to clear the air. I was wondering if you could touch a little bit on what was going through your mind during the final elimination?
Camila: My father had passed away just about one month before I went on the challenge, and the plan was for me to go home and be with my family during this tragic time. But MTV really insisted that I did this challenge (now that we know it’s the 25th anniversary it makes more sense as to why) so I eventually gave in. But I just had a very hard time focusing on the game instead of my situation back home. Every night I cried, and I was just very vulnerable emotionally. During my final elimination, I had too much time to think. Laying there in the ground, I could’ve just stayed there and I wasn’t going anywhere, it was a matter of time and who was willing to hold the longest and not let go, and that wasn’t me. I had too much time to think about ‘my reality’ back home and I began to feel guilty, and I began to question “Why am I here instead of back home with my family, they need me more than I need this money.” And that’s when I decided I needed to get the hell out of there and get back home to my family.
After your episode aired, many of your peers came out in support of you and the obvious strength you have shown in the past and continue to show. How does it feel to have that support from both Challenge veterans and your friends and peers?
Camila: I feel absolutely blessed. To know that people I care about care about me and that they are willing to look past my flaws and mistakes is very comforting. I love my cast mates regardless of the parts of them that I don’t necessarily like, and I wish them all the best.
When it came to Free Agents, was there anything you were nervous about going into this Challenge? Was there anything or a type of Challenge you were dreading?
Camila: Trivia. Haha. I hate using the word hate, but I absolutely hate trivia. I just get so nervous and I allow my “English as Second Language” to get the best out of me. But as far as the Free Agents concept, I absolutely loved it. I’m a sucker for anything new and challenging and while a lot of people who rely mainly on alliances to win were nervous, I was ecstatic. I wish every time we showed up for a challenge it was something totally new like this.
What would you say your strengths and weaknesses were going into The Challenge?
Camila: My strengths I think would be my passion for adrenaline. I’m an adrenaline junkie, and I embrace any opportunities to try new things- the crazier the better. Weaknesses, definitely my emotional state. Losing anyone we care about is a very devastating moment in a person’s life, and only time can heal- well, it never fully heals, but time can make it less painful. There are no words to describe what losing a father feels like, and the Challenge house was no place for me to mourn properly.
How crazy do things really get in the house? How do you pass the time?
Camila: They get crazy. Let’s just leave it at that haha. People go crazy for the money, people go crazy because they miss their families, and some people are just crazy naturally which is why they were invited in the first place. Haha :”). We try to be creative, lots of wine, lots of theme parties from Halloween to water balloon fights, pool parties, basketball games, etc. We are not allowed books, magazines, electronics, so we have to get creative if we don’t want to go 100% cuco.
Some people also use the down time to get to know each other, its during those times that some become lovers, and some become close friends off the show. It’s during those times that you end up loving your cast mates even if you don’t really like them- however that makes sense haha.
Do you have any favorite memories from hanging out with the cast or a favorite Challenge moment from the past?
Camila: Battle of the Exes was one of my favorite cast. Me and Diem, Paula and Emily know how to have some fun together. We always managed to have a blast and find a reason to laugh.
Social media certainly makes things easier but do you keep in touch with anyone from the show?
Camila: I am very busy when I am off the show, owning a business is not an easy task let me tell you. But it’s certainly a dream come true from when I was a little girl. But I always find time to check in on some of my girls Diem, Nany, Emily & Paula.
Is there anything that fans didn’t get to see that you wish MTV had included?
Camila: Me and Nany being ninjas. On Free Agents me and Nany would sip on wine and become ninjas AKA we would bother the hell out of everyone, we would write them notes, do lots of group hugs, scare people. Haha. They complained, but deep inside we know they loved it. 😉
Finally, the big question on our minds: Will you be back for another Challenge? What can fans look forward to from you next?
Camila: Hmm. That is for me to know and for you to keep a look out for! 😉 But let me just say that there are LOTS of new and yummi projects I am working on and will be launching soon. Make sure to stay tuned for all my latest ‘whereabouts’ on my new blog www.camilaworld.com , twitter and IG @CamilaMTV. And feel free to check out my Total Body Cleansing Health Spa in Miami www.cleanstartcleansing.com :”) Oh, and let’s not forget the WORLD CUP IN BRAZIL is about to begin, I’ll definitely be watching & talking about that!
Thank you so much for having me! Xo.
We’d like to thank Camila Nakagawa for taking the time to answer some questions for us! We really appreciate it! It was an absolute pleasure talking to a woman as strong and beautiful as she is.
As Camila mentioned, be sure to keep up to date with her on her social media accounts listed above and her official websites.
You can continue to tune in to The Challenge: Free Agents Thursdays at 10pm on MTV.