Laura Dern, who has been acting since she was 11 years old, said Sunday evening it’s an exciting time to be a woman working in Hollywood.
Dern, 50, earned an Emmy for her work as a supporting actress on HBO’s “Big Little Lies” and said the show offered an “amazing opportunity to female actors as well as crew members.”
When she started as a young actor, all of the crew were men, Dern said backstage at the Microsoft Theater.
“Even my makeup artist was always a man; hair, always a man.”
But now she’s seeing that change.
She said she is developing several shows with her production partner Jayme Lemons for HBO and said they are focused on female characters and are committed to putting more women behind the scenes.
“Big Little Lies” was adapted from a best-selling novel by Liane Moriarty and produced by Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, among others. Witherspoon and Kidman also co-starred and Kidman picked up an Emmy of her own for her lead role.
What Dern loved about the drama was that it portrayed “these seeming incredibly strong … women” who had experienced trauma and abuse. “It was speaking so directly to being true to your voice and standing up for yourself.”
She also praised director Jean-Marc Vallee, who she had previously worked with on the film “Wild.”
“He’s gender blind and just loves all qualities of his characters,” Dern said, comparing working with Vallee to a wild dance where she was “free to feel everything and do everything.”
Dern was asked whether Big Little Lies,” produced as a limited series, might run a second season.
“I think all the actors feel ecstatic (about that idea) because we love these characters” but it would be up to Moriarty, Dern said.
Dern’s parents are actors Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd, and she said she would ask her mother to take her golden statuette for her.
“She’s my original beacon,” Dern said.
–City News Service
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