Taylor Schilling fought for the lead in writer/director Laura Steinel‘s quirky new movie after falling in love with the frazzled character she felt destined to play.
The Orange is the New Black star plays a workaholic businesswoman tasked with looking after her troubled niece in Family, and admits she knew as soon as she read the script she had to play Kate Stone.
“I’ve never done this before but I was so enamored with the character that I wrote to Laura and said, ‘Congratulations’, and sent her flowers,” the actress tells WENN. “I was really impressed.”
“I had very rarely seen female characters start in the middle of the race of their own burnout. I thought it was pretty brave. I thought it was interesting to explore someone who was so unabashed in her lack of desire for domesticity. She makes a tremendous amount of sense to me.”
Schilling also got to work with one of her comedy heroes, Kate McKinnon, in the film, and experience a gathering of face-painted Insane Clown Posse fanatics, known as Juggalos.
“The call went out to the Juggalo community and they found out we were shooting this movie,” Taylor adds. “All the fans of ICP came down during the gathering scene and set up camp in Georgia and just participated in the film with us. They were all so loving and very much like a family.”
Taylor admits she hasn’t been so invested in a role since she played Helen of Troy in college.
“I shaved my head… and I would bring peanuts to auditions and just eat them,” she recalls. “I don’t know why I did it but I received feedback that it wasn’t a helpful choice!
“I was very diligent about auditioning back then. I was nannying in Washington Heights (New York) and I would just organize my auditions around the breaks… I knew exactly what I wanted to do and nothing was going to throw me off course.”