An Interview with Laurel Holloman
Retrieved from the old site
By after Ellen.com
by Lesley Goldberg
on August 31, 2010
“Maybe there will be an L Word movie. I keep hearing that they’re trying. I’m totally open to doing that.” And there you have it: Laurel Holloman says she’s in to reprise her role as Tina Kennard if Ilene Chaiken’s groundbreaking series were to make it to the big screen.
As for life after Tina, Holloman’s tim — save for a few months last spring when she reteamed with Angela Robinson and Jamie Babbit (and Meryl Streep’s daughter) on Teen Nick’s Gigantic — has been filled mostly with exploring her other artistic talent, painting.
AfterEllen.com caught up with Laurel Holloman as she packed up her New York loft and headed back to L.A. for the Emmys to discuss life after The L Word finding balance between painting and acting and yes, her thoughts on who killed Jenny.
AfterEllen.com: Looking back, were you happy with how The L Word ended?
Laurel Holloman: I’ve never seen the episode. I know I’ll watch it one day, but I thought it would make me sad so I didn’t watch it. [Laughs] I enjoyed shooting it because that was it; it was so emotional and it was really, really sad.
The whole sixth season I felt a like mentally I was moving on, so I tried to stay true to the character and have some really lovely moments between Bette and Tina. I don’t know how I feel about the “Who killed Jenny Schecter?” story. I’m going to go with no comment! [Laughs] I was sad that a lot of the fans were disappointed; I wish that we could have gone out in a different way.
[Not watching the finale] wasn’t an intentional thing; I just got busy in my life and realized that I never sat down and watched the end. Maybe now I’ll watch because it’d be so easy to, but I just haven’t done it.
AE: If the show were to have continued, where would Bette and Tina be a year and a half later?
LH: That’s a great question. I think they’re together, stronger and have that balance that they needed in the relationship. I’m a hopeless romantic, so I’d like to think that they’re doing well.
AE: Did you watch Ilene Chaiken’s The Real L Word?
LH: No. I do want to see that though. I’m really excited that she got that to happen and I know she’s probably done some amazing things with it. She’s such a creative, strong person and I think she’ll go on to do so many great things. But I haven’t watched that, either. It’s just me; I don’t sit down to watch TV. I have two kids under 5 and I’ve been painting for my website and for an upcoming show and my husband has been in China.
AE: Have you read anything about The Real L Word?
LH: No. How was it?
AE: There was one specific episode that featured one of the cast members using a strap-on.
LH: Whoa! That’s interesting. When I get back to L.A. and my house with Showtime, I’ll catch up on everything.
AE: In the six seasons on The L Word was there ever any discussion about a strap-on sex scene?
LH: No, I don’t think so. It never came my way. No, I don’t know anything about it.
AE: Moving on, it’s now been about a year and a half since The L Word ended. What have you been up to? Have you gone on a lot of auditions?
LH: Yeah, I have. I did something I knew I was going to do around the fifth season: we adopted our daughter, and then we went and finished the sixth season when she was 4 months old. Then, when I shot the third season, my oldest was 6 months old. So I knew that I would want a little bit of time — I wouldn’t have had two children if I wanted to jump back into a job — so I took some time and tried to focus on jobs that fit my life and I went and did Gigantic because of Marti Noxon, who worked on Angel and it was a really easy, light schedule and a fun role. I turned some things down and focused on painting because I could control my time schedule.
I came to New York in late April and I’ve been living in a painter’s loft until this week. I painted partially for a show in L.A. and for the launch of my website. I had my kids here and they had a great time. Now that my husband is back from China, we’re headed back to LA. I’m just trying to find the next thing and see where I land.
AE: What projects did you turn down?
LH: I turned down the lead in an indie film that I didn’t really think was going to benefit me in any way. I was flattered to have the offer. It’s not that I don’t want to act it’s that these were the things that were already happening and I was so fulfilled by them that I just never stopped. I am so focused right now on my art that I haven’t really thought about acting.
AE: You’re active on Twitter, detailing your process as an artist and recently tweeted photos of your work. What has the response from fans been like?
LH: I really owe the fans for getting my art out to people who weren’t fans of mine but were just fans of art. Now I would say about one-fourth of the sales are fans and all the rest are just collectors or people in the interior design industry. It has exploded in a way that I didn’t expect. It’s great that the fans are so supportive because I felt very vulnerable to artistically switch gears but I felt like I had to do it. Now I know I can’t stop. [Laughs]
AE: If you could map out how to spend a year between acting and painting, what would the balance be like?
LH: I would love to be on a series that was ensemble-ish so I wasn’t spending five days a week not putting my kids to bed. Maybe shooting 10 to 12 episodes and then painting over the hiatus and having an art show or two a year. The commissions are now taking up a lot of time so it’s hard to focus on the art show right now. I love the challenge of a commission, though. I just got a commission from a yoga studio in Mumbai.
AE: I love that you and Jennifer Beals are both so artistic — you with painting and Jennifer with her photography.
LH: She’s an amazing photographer. She’s been doing it for so long. Leisha [Hailey] is also an amazing painter. She’s a crazy artistic quadruple threat! I don’t think there’s anything Leisha can’t do. She painted a lot in her trailer.
AE: What did you think of Jennifer’s L Word photography book?
LH: Oh my God, it’s like my family photo album. When I’m sad and I miss people I just open it up and look through it. I love it. It was such a gift. I know it’s a huge gift to the fans, but for me it is like my family album. They were like my family for years. These people watched my children grow and they watched me change and grow, too. They see everything; it’s a family. They see your good days and bad days and they make you want to laugh when you’re sad.
t’s unlike other television, I don’t know how to explain it. It’s so unique and special to have that many women on a show. It’s really hard for me to walk on to another set since then and it probably always will be. Maybe that’s why I’m painting so much right now — because I haven’t figured out what that next thing is for me.
AE: Do you miss acting?
LH: Nope! I don’t. Not right now because I’ve been so immersed in painting that I’ve had that release. I think I’m more particular about what I like and that’s harder when it’s more competitive at the age that I am.
AE: A few of your former co-stars have new gigs coming up in the fall: Jennifer with Ride-Along —
LH: I don’t know if you’ve seen the trailer, but it looks beautiful. I think that’s the perfect part for her. It’s going to be so uniquely different than Bette that people will see what an amazing range she has.
AE: Kate Moennig just booked Dexter —
LH: And Rose Rollins is playing a cop — and Janina [Gavankar] just signed with my management company and she’s playing a cop on The Gates. Lots of doctors and mothers.
AE: Plus Sarah Shahi on Facing Kate. If you had your pick of the lot, which show would you want to join?
LH: For me, it doesn’t matter what the show is, it just matters if I like the character. I’m not sure that jumping in with another L Word-er is the right thing to do, either. You have to separate yourself a little bit. I loved Gigantic because I got to work Grace Gummer, who is Meryl Streep’s daughter, and she’s incredibly talented. And Marti is an amazing writer and creator; plus I got to work with Jamie Babbit and Angela Robinson and a lot of great directors who also were L Word writer-directors I loved hanging out with.
I’d love to work with Erin Daniels because we’re friends outside of the show and she’s so smart and has so many great ideas and is such a strong actress. She just had a baby, but she’s trying to find the right project. I’d love to do more with Rachel Shelley, Mia [Kirshner] or Kate.
AE: When will Gigantic air?
LH: Gigantic is going to air in October on Teen Nick. I shot four episodes of that and it was a very different part than Tina, which was a lot of fun. We shot it last spring and into the fall. My character used to be a rock and roller and she’s a one-hit wonder who ends up in an abusive relationship and winds up raising her teenage son by herself and they have a very nontraditional relationship. It’s a very progressive story. Gigantic is about celebrity and nepotism. It’s like a Gossip Girl in Los Angeles with more comedy.
For more on Laurel Holloman’s artwork, go to www.laurelhollomanstudio.net.