“A year ago I was watching the Emmys on my couch and thinking, ‘Oh, one day I’ll be there,'” recalls Constance Zimmer in our new interview about last year’s Best Drama Supporting Actress nomination for playing tough-as-nails reality TV producer Quinn King on Lifetime’s “UnReal.” “It was crazy to then be there, especially because it for ‘UnReal’ and because it was for Quinn King, a part that I turned down a bunch of times and for a show that isn’t on everyone’s radar.” Watch our exclusive webchat with Zimmer above.
Reflecting on her Emmy category, only Zimmer and Maura Tierney (“The Affair”) are eligible to be be nominated again, which means there will be a massive shakeup in her Best Drama Supporting Actress race. “It’s very exciting that there’s so much good television and so many good roles for women,” Zimmer says about today’s TV landscape and potential newcomers to her Emmy category. “Supporting characters, lead characters, all of that stuff. It can only be looked at as a positive thing. Of course, I would be very excited if it happens again!”
Zimmer’s co-star Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman, who plays reality TV producer Jay, sent in some fan questions that we ask live on air. He wants to know, after Quinn spends the entirety of three seasons now yelling at Jay, Rachel and Madison, how does Zimmer protect her voice from going hoarse? Zimmer laughs, “Because I come from theater, I learned at a very young age that everything is done through your diaphragm, not through your throat. We were joking about it because there’s some people who lose their voice after one scene of yelling, and I would say to Jeffrey, ‘Well, it’s because they’re not talking through their diaphragm.'”
In our discussion about Season 2 of “UnReal,” Zimmer dishes the importance of having an African-American suitor and how that’s being reflected now in other forms of media, what it was like playing Quinn “in love” with Ioan Gruffudd‘s John Booth, and being directed for the first time by her co-star Shiri Appleby, who plays producer Rachel Goldberg.
When we ask Zimmer if she’d ever want to direct an episode of “UnReal,” she reveals that she does in fact direct the upcoming eighth episode of Season 3. “I’m very tired, but it was a lot of fun,” she notes of the experience. “My acting kind of becomes secondary, so there’s definitely a part of me that’s thinking, ‘God, I hope I’m good in that episode.'”
“We have a very strong, independent suitress” in Season 3, Zimmer teases about the upcoming episodes. Caitlin Fitzgerald (“Masters of Sex”) plays the new star of show-within-a-show “Everlasting,” a character who “makes it very complicated for Quinn and Rachel, who are trying to make a television show. It’s been really fun and the guys are really hot, so I think people will be excited about that.”
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