Back in May, Lizzy sit with Sam Jones for his offCamera series to discuss her career, and the interview is available today. You can listen the podcast below:
It’s funny, and sometimes not so funny, how an actor’s earliest roles can influence the rest of their career. Lizzy Caplan’s first acting job was convincing everyone around her she was just fine when her mother passed away. Caplan was 13 at the time, and the tough, hold-it-in-and-laugh-it-off persona she cultivated as a result landed her a seemingly endless string of flinty, funny sidekick roles. Caplan was surprised and disappointed when the toughness she brought to her characters didn’t result in bigger parts. She felt she was brining more a nuanced version of one-dimensional female characters to the screen; so did casting directors and producers, who apparently didn’t really go for that.
Those were “dark days” that tested how much she wanted to be in a business that continues to hand down rejections to even the highest level of her peers. She stuck it out and resigned herself to a career of cool comedies that no one would see – a fate she didn’t necessarily mind, except for the fact that she knew she could do more. The folks at Showtime finally realized that too, and cast her as Virginia Johnson on its breakout drama Masters Of Sex. In playing a complex woman whose ambition and constant need to prove herself bears an uncanny resemblance to her own, Caplan finds herself in a role that serves as both an inspiration and a cautionary tale. A thick skin can get you through a lot, but if you’re not careful, it can separate you from a lot of happiness.
Caplan joins Off Camera to discuss the influence of her early childhood on her art, feminism on and off the screen, and the value of terrifying yourself on a regular basis. And nudity. Which she is okay with, as long as it’s her and not Will Ferrell.