Sigourney Weaver on Her ‘Political Animals’ Role: “It was just really like after eating salad for a couple of years, I was offered a big juicy steak”

sigourney-weaver-political-animalsThough she’ll always be best known as Ripley, the Alien franchise extraterrestrial ass-kicker and one of film’s most iconic female protagonists, Sigourney Weaver has had a prolific career in film.  She now stars in her first television mini-series Political Animals as Elaine Barrish, the current U.S. Secretary of State and ex-wife of a former president. 

In an interview with NBC News, Weaver speaks about her new role, its obvious connection to Hillary Clinton, and how fortunate she has been in her career.

Weaver admits that her main attraction to the role was the fact that it isn’t something she is usually offered.  She explains, “The writing was wonderful. It was the kind of story I’m not often offered. I wouldn’t be surprised if I was offered, you know, ‘mountain woman in Alaska’ or something, but to be offered this sort of mainstream matriarch who was a first lady, is now Secretary of State, who has this problematic family — two sons, an ex-husband, a foul-mouthed mother — it was just really like after eating salad for a couple of years, I was offered a big juicy steak. And I just took out my fork and knife and went, ‘All right, I’m going for it.’”

Of course, the “former First Lady becomes Secretary of State” certainly draws parallels to current United States Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.  But Weaver is quick to point out that the similarities are only superficial, saying, “I love the fact that our creator, Greg Berlanti, couldn’t resist some of the salient facts of the Clintons. But I always felt, from the moment I started reading it, that Elaine was her own person. I wouldn’t dream of trying to imitate or impersonate Hillary Clinton, whom I admire very, very much, and I think she’s done an awesome job in every job she’s had. But I would need months to prepare for that. But this, I just sort of turned the page and I was in the world of the Hammonds and in the world of Washington, D.C., which is so fascinating. And I just sort of jumped off the cliff.”

Ultimately, Weaver is surprised by her success in film, and she never imagined doing as well as she has done, particularly her iconic role in Alien.  She says, “I’m still surprised by it. I sort of went to school thinking I’d do a little Shakespeare… I was very fortunate. That was really my first film. So I mean I was, who knows; that’s just fortune, that’s the gods. But this role, Elaine, is one of the most challenging I’ve ever had because she doesn’t have a flamethrower. Her flamethrower is her ideals.”

Political Animals airs Sunday nights on the USA Network.

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/sally-field-hello-my-name-is-doris.jpg
Sally Field On Improvisation, How She Chooses Her Roles and ‘Hello, My Name is Doris’
“There’s a dearth of roles for women. I turn down a lot of stuff because there’s just nothing in it for me to do.” – Sally Field   Actress Sally Field put in an appearance at SXSW last week to promote her new film, Hello My Name is Doris. Michael Showalter has directed the movie […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Will-Ferrell-Get-Hard.jpg
Will Ferrell on His Comedy Roots, ‘Get Hard’ and His Favorite Roles to Play
Ferrell was on hand to take part in a Q&A and spoke more about how working with Hart came about. When asked if he chooses his projects based on who he wants to work with, or the script itself, Ferrell explained that each project was different.
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/daniel-dae-kim.jpg
Hawaii Five-0’s Daniel Dae Kim Talks Directorial Debut: “The first day I had to yell action, it was kind of odd”
Hawaii Five-0‘s Daniel Dae Kim, who fans know best as Chin Ho Kelly, recently made his directorial debut on the CBS series. Kim shared his experience with The Hollywood Reporter, saying that his experience was “weird at first,” as he had to direct his co-stars. “The first day I had to yell action, it was […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Ellie-Kemper-Unbreakable-Kimmy-Schmidt.jpg
Ellie Kemper on ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’, Doomsday Cults and Tina Fey
When Ellie Kemper joined The Office in season 5, her character Erin Hannon wasn’t intended to be one of the show’s primary characters. However, Kemper won producers over with her portrayal of the cheerful, naive receptionist and Erin was heavily featured in the series’ final seasons. Her portrayal also impressed 30 Rock producers Tina Fey […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/lily-james-cinderella.jpg
Lily James on Auditioning for ‘Cinderella’ and the Hardest Scenes She Had to Shoot
"The good thing is wearing something like that sort of changes how you stand and it gives you a sense of grace that you can use to your advantage as an actor" - Lily James on wearing corsets