I’m a late bloomer: Patricia Clarkson
Emmy Award winning actress Patricia Clarkson has starred in many leading and supporting roles in movies such as The Green Mile, Easy A, Good Night,...
Emmy Award-winning actress Patricia Clarkson has starred in many leading and supporting roles in movies such as ‘The Green Mile’, ‘Easy A’, ‘Good Night, and Good Luck’. She has been nominated for the Oscars for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in ‘Pieces of April’. Patricia has also done some remarkable series like ‘House of Cards’, ‘Parks and Recreation’ amongst others.
She twice won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her recurring role in ‘Six Feet Under’. She plays Adora Crellin, an overbearing socialite mother of the protagonist Camille Preaker played by Amy Adams in the American psychological thriller television limited series ‘Sharp Objects’, which is based on Gillian Flynn's debut novel of the same name. The series airs on Star World Premiere HD.
Excerpts from an interview
What attracted you to this show, and to playing Adora?
I’ve played Blanche DuBois at the Kennedy Center, and this part brought me closest to that tone, that timbre, that voice, that excruciating emotional life than anything else ever has - there was no relief in sight playing this character, especially for the last three episodes. And I stayed here for five months doing it. I had downtime you know, I’m not in every scene. But I couldn’t leave; I couldn’t go back to New York as Adora. I had these long talons, these crazy nails as Adora. I don’t know if you noticed I had these - they’re nude. When I wasn’t shooting, I just had to sit down, and that was helpful because it helped me think about what was coming, and where I was going.
Do you think you didn’t want to take her home with you?
I didn’t. I didn’t want Adora in my house. It’s bad enough that my dog had to deal with it and my dearest friends who came to visit me.
Did you know the book before you were approached for the role?
When they had offered me the part, I said, I want to talk to Gillian. When I talked to Gillian, I said I haven’t read the book, and she goes, good, good, good. Don’t, don’t… She liked the idea that I had no preconceived notion of Adora, which everyone does if they have read the book. Then by the end of episode eight, there were times I would look through the book or Amy would say, have you seen this in the book? But I was trying not to put the book up against this, because, it, it’s troubling and troublesome at times for writers to be competing against a finished work. So, there were a few moments we went back to the book, but I’ve thought about going back and reading the book now.
Was it a shock, when you read those final scripts?
Oh, yes. Once the real, deep darkness became apparent, I had to realise that I wasn’t playing the character I thought I was playing. I had to dive deep; I just had to go to places that are very painful. And, I just thought, oh god. But it’s a whole cast of really hurt, damaged people. So, I wasn’t alone in it - we were all on the journey to hell.
It almost seems as if roles are getting juicier and juicier for you. Did you ever think you’d be getting a role like Adora now?
I’m a late bloomer. I think I finally kind of came into everything later in life. And I think also I still look like myself, which helps. I think women, it’s their choice, their prerogative - do whatever you want to do that’s going to make you feel better. But I think it’s difficult and it’s dangerous because it really can end up ruining your career if things don’t go well. And I just never wanted to take that gamble. But I also think people now realise that we’re interesting, and formidable and to be reckoned with and that people want to see us.
They do care about women over 40, 50 - we have a very valid place in this world. We’re cool. Older women are cool now. People now want to celebrate us, and I’m like, okay. I like being attractive and sexual and sensual. We are vain as actors - oh my god, our egos are appalling. And so, that has to be fed. We like to feel beautiful and hot, and sexy.
- Sourced exclusively for The Hans India