Gigi Stopper is the fiesty, opinionated, widowed Texas dame who enjoys a stiff drink as much as she loves church. Annie Potts, who portrays Gigi on the freshman ABC dramedy “GCB,” calls her “the hostess with the mostest …belle of the ball … Auntie Mame.”
Potts has been a steady presence on television for the past quarter century with regular series roles on “Love and War” (Emmy nod in 1994), “Dangerous Minds,” “Any Day Now” (SAG bids in 1999 and 2000), and most famously “Designing Women.” She co-starred with Dixie Carter on that long-running CBS comedy and is now using some of her late friend’s traits on “GCB.”
In a video chat with senior editors Rob Licuria and Chris Beachum, Potts said, “Because I knew her so well, this is very much in character for her. She threw fabulous parties, and she had that kind of ebullience that I’ve tried to capture and use for Gigi. Dixie was also a conservative, very Christian, never missed church, and loved a glass of champagne.”
For the upcoming Emmy Awards, Potts will be on the ballot in the Best Comedy Supporting Actress category and says a nomination is “on my bucket list.” While her on-screen daughter played by Leslie Bibb will be in the Best Comedy Actress category, previous Emmy winner Kristin Chenoweth is trying her luck against Potts as a supporting actress.