Alison Brie had to shake off her “pristine” image to win the gritty role of a female wrestler.
The former Mad Men star explained in a new interview that she was “obsessed” with getting a role on TV show GLOW. In the Netflix series she plays Ruth, an actress struggling to get a decent acting job in 1980s Hollywood, who joins the cast of a new sports show, the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling.
Ruth is worlds away from her character Trudy, the strait-laced housewife she played in hit AMC drama Mad Men, and the Community star had to prove herself to show creators Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch, and producer Jenji Kohan of Orange Is the New Black fame.
“This idea of the wrestling and the ‘80s is so fun and exciting I became obsessed with getting a job on the show,” she explained to The Daily Record. “I had to audition many times before I won them over. I got the sense they didn’t think I was gritty or edgy enough based on the roles I’d played.” But the showrunners’ initial indifference only helped spur Alison on.
“That was a great signal to me that this was the role I wanted. I’d been looking to shatter this pristine image,” she said.
Apart from the physical challenge of learning to wrestle, Alison loved helping to create her character’s ’80s look.
“When I started, I brought in a picture of Sigourney Weaver in Alien and the kind of look she had. I said we needed to shag my hair and perm it and our hair department had very similar reference photos as well. Once I got my hair cut and permed, the characters came together,” she recalled.
The 34-year-old, who married fellow actor Dave Franco in a secret ceremony in March (17), also enjoyed the unexpected benefits of learning to wrestle.
“I feel a lot tougher thanks to the training, I feel like more of a badass,” she grinned.