“I think these are the roles that come to me for a reason. ‘Why did these creators think of me for this part? What is it in me that I can bring to this person?'” – Jane Levy
Castle Rock isn’t based on a single work by iconic horror writer Stephen King but is rather an adaptation of King’s body of work set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine — the setting for many of his stories. On the series, Suburgatory star Jane Levy plays “Jackie” Torrence, the niece of axe-wielding The Shining antagonist Jack Torrence. In an interview with Vulture, Levy reflects on her career and explains why Castle Rock is the perfect series for her at this point in her career.
Despite working regularly in television and film, Levy admits that she still has some first-day jitters amount every new role she is cast in. She explains, “The job of being an actor is being told no all the time and being disappointed a lot. At the same time, I am also extremely grateful that I get to work as an actor. Even when you do get a job, I never feel like it’s actually going to happen until the first day I’m on set, because so many times it falls apart. Even after you did all the crazy hard work to get the job. It’s kind of a miracle that I even got two jobs, and then three.”
Yet despite that success, Levy still feels like she doesn’t yet have a handle on the direction of her career. She says, “I have to say, though, it sounds like I have a lot of control over my career, but I feel like I have very little. I’m always struggling with myself where I’m like, ‘Give yourself some credit, you did make some of this stuff happen,’ but at the same time I think these are the roles that come to me for a reason. ‘Why did these creators think of me for this part? What is it in me that I can bring to this person?’ And through that, I’ve learned a lot about myself as a person and as a performer.”
One aspect of her career that Levy takes pride in is that she doesn’t believe that she has gotten by on typical young starlet roles. She points out, “I feel really blessed to have grown up with a mother who never, ever taught me that any part of my value had to do with what I looked like. This is obviously a career that’s in a visual medium. It’s all about the human face, but I am not interested in roles that are going to necessarily make me look good. I also have a kind of a perverted sensibility, so that’s why I’ve veered towards horror films and comedies and things that push boundaries.”
With that in mind, Levy reveals that Castle Rock is exactly the type of work she was interested in doing — in particular, she wanted to play a role like a fan-favorite character from Election. She says, “I did do this really dorky intention-setting thing at the beginning of last year when I was feeling dejected and didn’t feel like I was playing the parts that I wanted to. Someone was like, “Why don’t you write down your dream roles?” I am a huge fan of Alexander Payne, and Citizen Ruth and Election are two of my favorite movies of all time. So I was like, ‘I want to play Tracy Flick.’ When they sent me the Castle Rock script, it said that my character was Tracy Flick meets Ed Gein.”