Aidy Bryant interview: ‘Shrill,’ ‘Saturday Night Live’
“It was such a shock,” recalls Aidy Bryant about hearing the news she received two Emmy nominations this year. The comedian earned her second bid for Best Supporting Comedy Actress for NBC’s “Saturday Night Live,” but the more surprising nom came in the Best Comedy Actress category where Bryant received the first and only nomination for the Hulu series “Shrill,” which ended with its third and final season in May.
She reflects in her exclusive interview with Gold Derby (watch the video above), “It was super meaningful because [“Shrill”] is ending. It feels like a really nice acknowledgment of the years of my life that I’ve been absolutely grinding on this thing. It meant a lot to our crew and to our writers as well so it’s absolutely best case scenario.”
Bryant admits that acting and writing for two series is no easy feat. “It’s been the hardest part,” she says. “I would work in the writer’s room for ‘Shrill’ in the spring, which kind of works out because ‘SNL’ has more breaks then, so I could do two weeks solidly in the writer’s room. When I was on at ‘SNL’ I would spend all day in the writer’s room (for ‘Shrill’) and then around 3:00 I would be like, ‘Oh crap, I gotta go to ‘SNL’ now,’ and be there all night. It’s not a good schedule. I don’t recommend it to anyone, but it was all stuff I really enjoyed so it was fun.”
For “Shrill,” Bryant has submitted the fourth episode from Season 3 titled “Ranchers.” In it, we see her character Annie, visit a separatist community outside of Portland for her first big investigative journalism story. “I really loved a couple of episodes we did in the second season,” Bryant explains about the inspiration for the episode. “It was Annie going into this other world. Kind of a fish out of water feeling. What’s the ultimate version of that? How can we really turn that up? I had read a lot about the Bundys and rural Oregon that is very not Portland, these separatist families. I got kind of obsessed with that. What if we put Annie in there? Out of her depth and maybe not there for the right reasons. She’s there for her own ego.”
Bryant has submitted the “Saturday Night Live” episode hosted by Rege-Jean Page for the supporting race. In this installment, Bryant appears as Senator Ted Cruz in a Britney Spears opening, a character she wasn’t expecting to play. “I don’t fancy myself an impressionist, honestly,” Bryant admits. “But there is something about him that I can grab onto because it’s so extreme. There’s a kind of pride in everything he says, where he thinks he’s being kind of funny or he thinks he’s being kind of cool. That is very charactery about him. There’s kind of a smarminess. I can do that.”