Rachel Tenner interview: ‘Maid’ casting director

“At my first meeting with everybody. I asked, ‘Do I read the book? Or should it just stay away and let the scripts be the information I need to do the job?'” remembers casting director Rachel Tenner about the early discussions for the Netflix limited series “Maid,” which is a fictionalized adaptation of Stephanie Land‘s memoir “Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive.” Ultimately it was decided not to refer to the book for casting inspiration and “let the scripts stand alone.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Tenner above.

“Maid” follows Alex, a young woman who works cleaning houses in order to support herself and her young daughter while she tries to escape an abusive relationship. Since Alex is in pretty much every scene of the series, “we did a real exhaustive audition process” for the role that led to the casting of Margaret Qualley. “I think that Alex really had to embody a lot of different elements. She’s intelligent, she’s kind, she’s troubled.” There are “so many great actors in that age group, men and women. So it was an amazing, really exciting process to get to read so many people … But at the end of the day Margaret just had it all.”

Since “Maid” was produced during the COVID-19 pandemic, those casting sessions happened via Zoom. One might expect that auditioning that way would make the process more difficult, but “I’m surprised that you can still get such a sense of somebody doing it that way,” Tenner says. Virtual casting also makes it possible “to see so many more people than you usually were able to in the past. When you’re doing it in person, you physically can only see so many people a day.” Nowadays the perfect actor for a role is just a webcam away.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

UPLOADED Jun 1, 2022 2:30 pm