“I don’t know if you can ever anticipate this. I mean, 12 is a lot of nominations,” said Taylor Schilling in our recent video chat (watch it below). She stars as fish-out-of-water prison inmate Piper Chapman in “Orange is the New Black,” which premiered on Netflix in summer 2013 and earned a dozen Emmy bids this year, including Best Comedy Series and Best Comedy Actress for Schilling.
She was also recently nominated at the Golden Globes for her performance. It was her first time at that event, and she was honored to be singled out for her work, but she was also thrilled “to be in the same room with all those people that I look up to so much. I could almost throw my napkin and hit Meryl Streep,” she said, adding, “I would never throw anything at Meryl Streep.”
She competed for Best TV Drama Actress at the Globes, but later Netflix decided to enter the series for Emmy consideration as a comedy, a gambit that paid off with its impressive nominations haul. Discussing the genre-defying nature of the series, however, Schilling explained, “I don’t think about [the distinction between comedy and drama] when we’re shooting, but I have to say, it doesn’t feel like one or the other. There are moments when it feels very much like were shooting a comedy, and there are moments where it feels like the opposite … I do think stuff that feels the most authentic to me lives in the gray area.”
Either way, it’s the work that matters most to her. “I still can’t really get over the fact that I’m able to make a living doing what I love.” Also, “It’s just incredibly empowering to be reading scripts every week where each of us, each female is in the seat of her own narrative. Her story is valid. And every character, no matter what their background is or where they come from or where they’re going, their voice is worth being heard.”
Do you think Schilling’s work will pay off with an Emmy? Watch our complete interview below, then make your predictions.