Leden 2011


26. ledna 2011 v 19:13 z alba ER

Closed Set with Julie Bensman: 5 Questions for Emmy Rossum|

25. ledna 2011 v 18:59 jine
I'm a big fan of icebreakers. My favorite day of school was always the first, when the teacher would set up some amazingly awkward game where students had to reveal something about themselves so the class could "get to know" each other. Shy students considered this a sanctioned form of adolescent torture; I, on the other hand, delighted. Should I tell people about my perfectly organized dead bee collection or about my 3-for-3 record of receiving a carnation from the knight at Medieval Times? This declaration would shape my classroom persona for the entire year…
Not much has changed about the reaction to icebreakers upon entering adulthood (elicited groans may be slightly louder and more exaggerated), except for the fact that the information is often juicier. Case in point? The beautiful and talented Emmy Rossum. Did you know:
  • She joined the Metropolitan Opera Children's Chorus at the age of seven and, while there, performed in five languages in 20 different operas.
  • She adopted a stray cat from the Chicago set of Shameless and named it Fiona G. Kitty, after her character on the show (more on that below).
  • She follows a gluten-free diet.
One thing's for sure: we would DEFINITELY have been friends in school. Alas, our lives have taken different forks: hers is now filled with red carpets and paparazzi, amplified particularly after the recent debut of Showtime's dark comedy series, Shameless. Here's another piece of trivia: the show had the biggest premiere in the history of the network. Rossum plays Fiona, the witty and wild daughter of William H. Macy's character, who must keep her five younger siblings in line, despite working-class problems fueled by money, alcohol and, well, a family that drives her crazy.
I caught up with the Vegas Magazine cover girl to discuss acronyms of lighter note: eBay, LA and NASA, of course.
Julie Bensman: How would you describe your personal style?
Emmy Rossum: My personal style is constantly evolving. I grew up in New York so it started with clean lines and sophisticated tailoring, and it's gotten a little softer and more sensual in the last few years; even a little more bohemian, with prints and florals and fringe.

JB: Who are some of your favorite designers?
ER: I like to mix high and low. I love Donna Karan, Anna Sui, Elie Tahari, Gerard Darel... I love easy pieces from Gap, Ever and Aqua, and jeans from Henry & Belle.

JB: What's your best kept style secret?
I search for 70s vintage floral dresses on eBay. You can never quite tell how something is going to fit, so I limit myself to pieces under 20 dollars. I'm also a big fan of throwing a leather jacket over pretty much anything.

JB: If you weren't an actress, what occupation interests you?
ER: I would love to have been an astronaut or (more realistically) work in research for NASA. Space and science always fascinated me in school.

JB: What's the last thing you Googled?
ER: A recipe for gluten-free chicken parmesan for Saturday night cooking with friends. 

Getting Shameless with Emmy Rossum

23. ledna 2011 v 20:20 Shameless (2011 - ...)

We talk to the star of Showtime's new series about her character's strengths, working with William H. Macy and sex scenes with her Dragonball costar.

One of the best new TV series to debut this season, Showtime's quirky, funny and involving Shameless has found Emmy Rossum (Mystic River, The Day After Tomorrow) impressing one critic after another, with her bold and knowing performance as Fiona Gallagher. The oldest of six siblings, Fiona has taken on the role of de facto parent to her younger siblings, because mom has left town and her dad, Frank (William H. Macy) is a perpetually drunk degenerate.

I recently spoke to Rossum about her work on the series, which is a remake of the popular British series of the same name. We discussed what makes Fiona tick, the specific family dynamics at work on the series, the casual nudity the role requires and more - including the amusing fact that her love interest (and partner in an exuberant, kitchen-set sex scene in the first episode) is played by her Dragonball Evolution
costar, Justin Chatwin.

IGN TV: It must be great to see the positive reaction the series is getting.

Emmy Rossum: Yeah, anything you care about, you hope that people embrace it and like it and appreciate it. The interesting thing is that people have appreciated even the minute details that we put into the show. Like the squeaky toy that everyone steps on in the hall. Or how we fill the milk bottle with water. Little things that we do on the day and the director and I say, "Well, no one is every going to notice this, but it's good to have the real thing." And then people really comment on it and write about it online and write to us about it on Twitter. It's fun. It feels good.

IGN: Because of Frank's situation, not only has Fiona taken control of the family, but to me, she's really the center of the series and the heart of it. Do you see it that way?

Rossum: The show kind of centers around Fiona, although a lot happens in the surrounding areas around her. I feel like she's the one sane mind amidst all these clowns, almost. And so it's interesting, especially to center a show about dark subject matter around a young woman. I think for any character you approach, you approach it from how they grew up and their backstory and everything and I think that looking at the typical structure of a family of children of alcoholics, you have the one who is the rebel and the one who is the kind of joker and the one who basically picks up the pieces - and that is who she is. That is how she functions. I mean, yeah, she does kind of become the rebel at night time. When there's a void, it will be filled. And I think that as the oldest and as the one who clearly has her nose the grindstone, no messing around, that is the role that she has adopted.


IGN: But as you mentioned, she does have her wild side.

Rossum: Well, I feel like for her, clubbing and sex in that way is almost like a release and a compulsion, because she leads this life that is way too grown up for her young years and is really, in a lot of ways -- although she doesn't acknowledge it emotionally to herself -- very unfair to her. And she could have all this hostility towards the people around her who have made her pick this role and pick up all these pieces, but she doesn't. I think that she kind of gets out all that youthful energy in club dancing and just trying to screw this guy, who then is like, "I like you!"

IGN: Had you seen the original when you were cast?

Rossum: No. I auditioned three or four times for this and before my final audition, they put a test deal in place and if you get the part, you have to take it. It's not like, "Oh, I don't feel like it anymore!" So with that, Mark Mylod, our director, who also was part of the original team from the British series, said, "You need to watch the sexuality and make sure you're cool with that amount of exposure." So I watched the initial sex scene in the kitchen in the British version. But that's all I've seen. And I watched it on mute, because I didn't want to hear the accents.

IGN: Just so you could…

Rossum: Visually see what [happened]. I didn't want… I know Anne-Marie Duff's representation of the character is so loved and so fantastic, from everything I've read about it, so I was almost nervous to be exposed to that in any way - that it might color what my natural instincts would be.


IGN: So was there any hesitation with the sexuality and the nudity?

Rossum: No, not at all. I mean, I'd never done it before, so for the first episode, I was very nervous. But showing these kinds of characters… People expose so much of their inner workings and their emotional life in sexual experiences that I felt like it would be very telling to show the way she has sex. You know, you can tell anything from anyone. The way you eat or the way you walk… the way you have sex… So I really wanted to show that. So yeah, the first time that we did that in the first episode, I had a few beers. But now it's funny. We're in our eleventh episode and it's like I'm totally uninhibited. And I only noticed it because there was another actress who was in state of undress for the first time on our set [recently] and she was like, "You're just so comfortable with yourself. How do you just take your clothes off like that?" And I'd never thought about myself like that before until someone said that to me. And I was like, "Yeah, I am comfortable now! Good for me!" [Laughs] I was like, "Take off your clothes! This is great!" It was so bizarre.

IGN: I have to tell you, it's hard to think of a time when two actors like you and Justin went from doing a project like Dragonball to something as wildly different as this.

Rossum: Oh my god, all the Dragonball fans are like, "Bulma and Goku are doing it!" We've been buddies since then and really close friends, which is funny, because we have this natural chemistry when we're doing these roles that we don't really have to work that hard for. But we've never had it before, so it just seems like something inherent in the way the material functions with the two of us, that we're just like, "Oh, yeah!"

IGN: How is it working with William H. Macy? He obviously comes with quite a resume!

Rossum: He was in my audition. He was in the room, so I was definitely nervous. He's such an ingenious actor and he has such an imagination. It's so interesting to see him work. More than anything, just his humility and the fact that he will ask us our opinion between takes... He'll be like, "Do you think that worked or do you think I should do it more?" He really does function as part of the team. There's no ego and it's just such a good lesson that no matter how much success you have, you have to remember that you're still a person and to treat other people with respect. I really admire that about him.

IGN: It's a big cast and there's a lot of separate storylines. Going forward, might we see a little more intersecting? Like might Fiona get involved in Ian's storylines a bit more?

Rossum: Yes. But everyone's on kind of a different journey. There's Karen and Lip and Frank and Sheila, and they will be in more storylines together. And me and Justin and me and the cop as well. It's interesting. All the stories will eventually connect and in fact later in the season, our mother will return and that will be very disruptive to everyone.

IGN: That is obviously a big deal, given the family dynamic.

Rossum: Right. What is Fiona's role if she's not their mother?

IGN: And I've wondered just how long Fiona's been playing this motherly role.

Rossum: I feel like the parents were never very responsible. I feel like Fiona probably operated in this role, at least emotionally for the kids, and probably was doing jobs as a teenager. But it becomes clear later that the mother has been gone for two or three years.

IGN: You have all these cast members playing your siblings and I feel like you guys really bounce off each other well and feel natural together.

Rossum: We got a lot of time to bond before we shot and actually the kitchen that's on our stage - the Gallagher kitchen - actually functions as our kitchen when we're working there. So, especially during rehearsal times, we'll have our cold cuts and bread in the fridge and when they call lunch, I make the kids sandwiches. So I learn who's allergic to peanuts, who's allergic to milk, who likes their crust cut off, who wants their sandwich cut vertically, diagonally and in quarters - all that stuff. I'm an only child and I think that I am a caretaker in a lot of ways of a lot of my friends and my family. But it's funny that all the kids except one [in the cast] are only children. So I think it's funny that they cast us, because we all wanted to bond immediately, because we'd never really had that. I think that made us mesh easier or quicker.

IGN: Coming from films, what is it like for you to move to a TV series where you're now following this character for a much longer period?

Rossum: It's emotionally more difficult to detach from it, now that we're coming to the end of the season. But it's also so much more fulfilling in a lot of ways, because a lot of what you do in a film is just tell the story and you don't get as much time to go down every single little road that you do, or really take the characters on a journey like you do in a series. So I just think you get to see the characters in a lot of different situations and settings and I think it enables you to do the arc more slowly.

IGN: Shameless certainly feels like a cable show. Can you even fathom the network version of it?

Rossum: No. The network version of this is Modern Family, which is a great show, but totally different. But no, we have drugs, sex and rock and roll. You can't do that on network!

IGN: The show walks a fine line that I think is admirable, because you like these people, even though some of their actions are criminal, and arguably immoral.

Rossum: Oh, they're terribly immoral. But I think everyone understand that if you're in dire times of need, your family comes first and you would do anything to protect your family. There's something very noble in loyalty. So I think that's why the characters are still likable.

IGN: Fiona has been seeing Steve (Justin Chatwin), but there's also interest from her police officer friend. Will that continue to develop?

Rossum: I think that she feels a great connection with Steve and a lot of passion with him. And I think Tony, the cop, is the better choice for her, in terms of on paper. But I think this isn't a girl who really thinks like that. It's all very instinctual and I think that she's very afraid of commitment. As we get to know more about Tony, he's a momma's boy. And I think that she would have a very nice, very stable life with Tony, that would probably be the healthy option for her. But I don't think the healthy option for her is really one that would make her happy inside or one that he's comfortable with yet.

IGN: Does Fiona ever think about trying to make Frank get his act together, or does she see it as a lost cause?

Rossum: I think that she longs for the person that he could be. I think they've seen glimpses of that, but it's never really been there for a long enough time that it was reliable. I think that's what's scary about her life - that nothing is reliable. That people are always shifting and changing and the pieces are always shifting and changing and there's always a bill to be paid and always something to focus on.

Vegas Magazine - January/February 2011/ Thomas Whiteside

16. ledna 2011 v 11:03 Photo Shoots

Emmy in VEGAS

In television's early days, people gathered around the tube to watch I Love Lucy, The Honeymooners and Leave It to Beaver, and later to get the "warm and fuzzies" from the Cosbys or the Keatons. Now prepare to meet the Gallaghers, Showtime's rendition of the hit British television series Shameless, which could make Al Bundy look like Father of the Year.

"The prettier version of a modern family would be Modern Family, which I freakin' love and laugh my ass off at every week," says Emmy Rossum, who stars as Fiona Gallagher. "But the dynamics of our [Shameless] family are that no matter how bad it gets, no matter how messed up we all are, we love each other and we're going to get through it together."

Cinephiles who've been crushing on perennial "good girl" actress Rossum since her breakout role as Christine in The Phantom of the Opera (opposite a then unknown Gerard Butler) will get a serious shock to the system seeing the 24-year-old New York native-Shameless' leading-lady ("lady" in the loosest sense of the word). "I haven't usually been cast as such a feisty character in the past," she says. "So it's really fun to play such an opinionated woman who has such an internal vulnerability. The Gallaghers are unabashedly in-your-face; this is who we are and if you don't like it, suck it. They can hardly pay the bills, but they're fiercely loyal and have so much fun-and they really, really love breaking the law."
William H. Macy's Shameless Brood
Her family of cons is led by Oscar-nom William H. Macy as the brood's alcoholic, narcissistic patriarch. In the show, which has already garnered fawning reviews from TV critics, Rossum plays a randy 21-year-old who has to run the family when her dad checks out of fatherly duties, often to hang out with a companion (and future love interest) played by audience favorite Joan Cusack. "There's something that pulls this family together all the time, and that's the load that Emmy has been given to carry," Macy says. "She is the workhorse of our series. She's in almost every single scene, and she's got two distinct roles to play. First is her relationship with the new boyfriend, Steve [played by Justin Chatwin]. And it is so sexy; they're such a winning couple. But because the mom has left and the father-my character-is an addict and an alcoholic, she's the mom; she keeps the family together. And she's doing it magnificently."

Besides finding her character to be "kick-ass, deep, fun and unexpected," Rossum was attracted to the role for its reprieve from the corsets and pancake makeup that peppered her early years as a member of New York's Metropolitan Opera. The baldness of Shameless, however, does allow her natural stage presence to shine; not many of the actresses manufactured by Hollywood could pull it off, since it requires Rossum's enormous, watery brown eyes and heart-meltingly feminine features to have a starring role.

"We pretty much get no hair or makeup at all," she says. "They frizz out my hair a little and rub mascara around my eyes, and that's it. I love the no-vanity aspect of it. It's really liberating from having had so many years of period costume drama."
Emmy Rossum In the Nude (Nearly)
In fact, Rossum's Shameless wardrobe could be considered somewhat shame-ful (if you're opposed to seeing a beautiful girl in her birthday suit on TV, that is). "It's like, OK, time to take my top off," she says about her sex scenes with Chatwin, who also appeared with Rossum in Dragonball: Evolution. "The whole thing is so silly that if we weren't so comfortable with each other, it would be really uncomfortable. It's definitely an acquired experience. You look over, and the camera guy is very politely averting his gaze in between

At least one famous fan thinks she's a natural at going au naturel. "They're so easy to look at," says Macy of Rossum and Chatwin. "I love this one scene that they did that was very sexy, and then the drawer slammed on his fingers while they were making love. I just thought that was hysterical and perhaps a metaphor for our whole show-it's always two things at once."

Rossum's enthusiasm for the script has the actress more than willing to embrace her character's skin-baring moves. And she has every reason to be confident-the American version of Shameless has the same creator, Paul Abbott, as the seven-season original UK series, which boasts one Bafta Award (England's version of the Emmys) and four additional nominations in the Best Drama Series category. Plus, the show helped launch the career of film star and Golden Globe nominee James McAvoy.

"It doesn't make sense that the character would wear a bra and care at all about what she looks like when she's having sex," Rossum says. "Sex is meant to feel good, and she wants to feel good. Her life is so shitty in so many ways. Some people use alcohol, some people use gambling-and some people use sex."

But while the newly single Rossum (she broke up with Counting Crows' Adam Duritz last fall) has no apprehensions about pushing the envelope on-screen, her life is substantially more PG off, especially when visiting Las Vegas. "My uncle actually lives in the suburbs of Vegas, so I've spent time there but not so much on the Strip," she says. "I dig Vegas. It's really fun and I love the energy, but it's more of a family place to me. I don't know anybody who talks about Vegas that way, but I go for sushi in the minimall when I'm there. I'm like the un-Strip Vegas person."