“I knew what we were doing was very special and very different,” says Kathryn Hahn of “WandaVision.” Nevertheless, she didn’t expect the feverish level of conversation that the Disney+ limited series would generate, especially around the revelation that her character was Agatha Harkness (all along). The actress was told the Marvel series was supposed to be “the experimental cousin coming out second,” but a shift one release schedule and catchy theme song later, and seemingly everyone was devouring the sitcom world of ‘WandaVision.” Watch the exclusive video interview above.
Hahn had to match many different performance styles as the series jumped from one era of sitcoms to the next in each episode. She admits that the first installment, set in the 1950’s is her favorite. “It was the furthest from my experience,” she explains, “and I was able to tap into so many women members of my family.” Though she excels in the heightened comedy that comes from the nosey housewife trope, the actress jokes that “I’m certainly glad that we are beyond corsets… and having all that crap that goes along with having to be a housewife” of that time.
The stylized comedy also provided a challenge which Hahn relished. “From a technical standpoint, the comedy was really fun to dive into,” she reveals. “It really required much more, an earnestness… I’m a cynical bird. So it was fun to have to go there.” The experience provided an appreciation for how effortless series like “The Dick Van Dyke Show” or “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” made their highly choreographed comedy appear.
The actress compares the relationship between Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) and Agatha to that of Amadeus and Salieri. Hahn compares her role to “the older musician who has the most passion and technique, but just could never achieve that natural gift or greatness.” She believes that her veteran witch character “craves, is hungry for, is jealous of all of that which The Scarlet Witch just is.” She doesn’t believe that Agatha is all evil, there’s also maternal elements and a mentor-like component to the centuries old sorceress. “It’s in that really delicious grey area that I found it to be so fun to play,” describes Hahn. “There’s a lot of different textures in there.”
“WandaVision” has clearly boosted her profile to a whole new audience. When asked what type of character she’d like to follow up Agatha with, she simply states: “I’ll know her when I meet her.” That approach has been guiding her career for years. “I think that has made for a really interesting journey,” she reveals, “and one that I’m so thrilled to have been afforded the opportunity to go on.”
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