“I wanna find the reality and the truth in everything. That really works well for me, as an actor.” – Amanda Seyfried
Actress Amanda Seyfried received her first Academy Award nomination for her performance in Netflix’s Mank. It had been a long road to the Oscars for Seyfried, who began acting on soap operas as a teenager. She spoke to Collider about how she feels about acting now having over two decades of experience to her credit.
Having been acting professionally for over two decades, Seyfried feels that she now has a thorough understanding of her strengths and weaknesses as an actress. She explains:
“I know my strengths now. My weakness list is much shorter and my strengths list exists. My strengths are that I’m really allergic to lying and to dishonesty. I wanna find the reality and the truth in everything. That really works well for me, as an actor. I also just wanna play everybody. I have so much compassion and I really love storytelling. I love movies and books, and I just wanna dive into someone else’s world and walk in their shoes. With Mank, getting to play a real person was the best thing, ever. My weaknesses are that I can get lazy. I can learn my lines in the makeup chair, on the day, and sometimes that gets in the way. Sometimes it doesn’t, but sometimes it does. I also don’t want to do certain physical roles, but I can’t just say no to things that mean I have to work harder, in a physical way. I think that can really affect my performance in a really good way and I need to just open my perspective a little bit. I’m sure there are many more, if I delve… This level of recognition and appreciation is unprecedented for me and I’m soaking it up, trust me. But I came to a point, in my early 30s, where I was really struggling with finding the right things and finding something that really fulfilled me. I did this play, and I do think it reflected back at me that I really did have a stamina and incredible passion, and I would do anything to find the deeper meaning in something. It was hard, but I did it, I got through it, and I succeeded. It was also a lesson in proving that I really can do anything, if I work hard enough, and I deserve to work hard because I deserve to reap those benefits. I have the passion, I have the compassion, I have the skill underneath, and I have the time and the experience. I wanna just fly now.”
Seyfried believes that one of those strengths is that she has typically felt confident in front of the camera. She continues, “It did come easily to me, from childhood. I certainly wanted to express what I was feeling, all the time, and throw it on the table. Teenagehood was completely different. I don’t even wanna go there. I was inside of myself for a time. But besides that, I vomit my feelings very easily. I’ve been trying to create a filter that I still don’t use quite often enough, or as much as my family would like me to use it, but it’s really served me as an actor. I wanna express. Someone told me my face was too animated, and I could have taken that the wrong way, but I decided that was a good thing. And so what? I have frown lines because I frown a lot. I feel things and I want to express them. I guess that’s what it is. It’s hard not to.”
In addition to the camera, Seyfried also says that she now feels much more comfortable on stage after not doing live theater until she appeared in the Off-Broadway production of the Neil LaBute play The Way We Get By in 2015 alongside her future husband, actor Thomas Sadoski. However, Seyfried has one very specific request for doing another play. She reveals, “It makes me nervous thinking about it… My husband [Thomas Sadoski] is starting to direct theater now, and even a year ago, I told my husband, ‘Okay, but the character has to have breaks in between. I’m not gonna do that thing where I can only pee in the beginning, and then no more breaks because I’m on stage the whole time. It’s gotta be the perfect role where I can leave the stage.’ That’s my only rule. I’d love to. It’s an incredible experience.”