The budding friendship between Zosia Mamet and Kaley Cuoco has been well-documented within the run-up to the discharge of their new HBO sequence The Flight Attendant: paparazzi photographs of the 2 on set in New York Metropolis have been snapped and extensively distributed, and numerous articles have been revealed after the actresses received matching tattoos to commemorate their time filming the thriller. Whereas on set, Mamet and Cuoco overheard that members of the present’s wardrobe division deliberate to get matching tattoos as a tribute to having beforehand labored collectively on Mr. Robotic. (Their ink: a small robotic with the phrases “Howdy, Buddy.”)
“Kaley and I have been like, ‘We need to come!'” Mamet remembers throughout a video name from her residence in upstate New York. They settled upon a tiny paper airplane with a squiggly line behind it, which their costume designer Catherine Thomas drew. Mamet’s mainstay tattoo artist, Evan Tattoo, did the artwork on the 32-year-old’s ankle.
On Zoom, a few of Mamet’s different tattoos present as she gesticulates, cracking jokes and utilizing humorous, Vaudeville-esque voices when she does. Particularly seen is a thickly drawn coronary heart on the palm of her hand, which appears like somebody took to her with a Sharpie.
“As somebody who has, in all probability, too many tattoos for what I do, I discover that originally, they begin out with quite a lot of that means,” she says. It is becoming, then, that she memorialized her time on The Flight Attendant with one, even when it was a spontaneous choice—engaged on this mission, Mamet explains, produced an impact that solely comes round a couple of instances in an actor’s profession.
The present, which premieres on HBO Max November 26, follows Cuoco’s character Cassie Bowden, a flight attendant who awakes one morning with a killer hangover and a lifeless physique mendacity subsequent to her. As FBI brokers query her, she begins to suppose she is likely to be liable for the homicide. Mamet performs Cassie’s finest good friend Annie, a realistic and gritty lawyer born and raised in New York who will get roped into serving to her evade the authorities.
Annie is just not too far off, personality-wise, from the character that first put Mamet within the highlight, the neurotic Shoshanna Shapiro on Women. Mamet, a Vermont native, had a reasonably long-standing performing profession earlier than the Lena Dunham-led manufacturing (you may bear in mind her as Peggy’s picture editor good friend Joyce in Mad Males), and her relations are concerned within the trade as properly—her father is the playwright and director David Mamet, and her mom is actress Lindsay Crouse. However Women is the place, Mamet explains, she discovered a pocket of consolation and stability. And she or he hadn’t felt that approach since, regardless of engaged on a large number of initiatives together with Tales of the Metropolis. Then the chance for The Flight Attendant got here alongside.
“It felt like the very first thing that I had launched into since Women that felt like this may very well be doubtlessly my subsequent residence,” Mamet says. “I’ve beloved a lot working in tv and Women was such an insane reward in that regard. I clearly love making motion pictures, however there’s one thing about capturing a present once you get to return again, not solely to the identical character, however to the identical group of individuals 12 months after 12 months.”
Capturing for The Flight Attendant started in winter 2019, and the workforce efficiently completed 5 full episodes earlier than the pandemic shut down manufacturing in mid-March. Mamet, like the remainder of the world, had her life thrown right into a tailspin—she was floating, untethered. She and her husband, the actor Evan Jonigkeit, had plans to maneuver out of New York Metropolis someday sooner or later, and the pandemic pushed that transfer ahead considerably. Of their new home—a cabin constructed within the Twenties that was initially bought by way of a Sears catalog—the couple engaged within the typical quarantine actions: cooking, studying, watching motion pictures, taking their canine Moose for walks. Jonigkeit, whom Mamet describes as “loopy useful,” tinkered with the inside, changing their eating room into a house fitness center and refurbishing the partitions. Mamet, who describes herself as a licensed “horse woman,” would go to the barn on daily basis and trip. “That was principally our Groundhog Day,” she says laughing. They discovered they didn’t miss the hustle and bustle of the town, even after having lived there for over 10 years. (“I am secretly 90 years outdated inside this meat go well with,” Mamet provides. “The turtle life is de facto doing nice by me.”)
In September 2020, the solid and crew have been referred to as again to set. They have been, Mamet says, the “guinea pigs,” the very first manufacturing again up in New York.
“I used to be scared that I used to be going to return and it was going to really feel scientific, with all these precautions in place. That is one of many issues I like most about what I do is that this intimate, artistic, hands-on environment. I puzzled if I used to be going to return and, like, no, one’s going to be allowed to speak to one another.”
The precautions have been firmly in place—the costume division was in full PPE, sporting masks, face shields, goggles, and hospital aprons. A Covid-19 assistant director workforce was on-site, distributing hand sanitizer and masks. However inside 5 minutes of returning to work, Mamet says any notions of discomfort vanished, they usually have been “hysterically laughing,” as if they’d by no means left.
“Then we had this actually magical factor that occurs very hardly ever in our trade, which is that everybody concerned creatively clicked on this approach that felt actually highly effective,” Mamet says. “A lot of it has to do with chemistry; each puzzle piece match completely collectively, each human on the present—from our grips to Kaley—gave 150 p.c on daily basis.”
The connection was particularly robust between Cuoco and Mamet, who had by no means met previous to this manufacturing. Throughout their first desk learn, the 2 actresses have been inspired to improvise in the event that they needed to. Cuoco approached Mamet and instantly “booped” Mamet by tapping her on the nostril.
“Instantly I used to be like, ‘Do not try this.’ Annie and Cassie have been born in that second,” Mamet says. She provides that Cuoco can also be a “horse woman” they usually have huge plans to, as soon as “that is throughout,” go to Eire for a driving journey. The truth is, one of many paparazzi photographs snapped of the 2 actresses, during which they’re crying and hugging each other on the final day of filming, was when Cuoco gifted Mamet an equestrian helmet.
Though The Flight Attendant could seem to be a boring comedy-slash-murder-mystery on paper, Mamet regards it as a narrative that exhibits humanity. And certainly, the characters—particularly the ladies featured—are layered and complex; extra so than in your commonplace thriller fare. The characters have been partly what drew Mamet to the mission within the first place. She, like many different actresses within the trade immediately, are avoiding taking over roles that she’s referred to as prior to now “furnishings characters”: a nice-looking chair that serves no function, or, in different phrases, an individual in a movie who does not maintain any substance.
“All the characters have an actual finish, and all of their storylines are so integral to them,” Mamet says. “We be taught a lot about why they’re doing what they’re doing, what motivates them. Being alive is just not easy. It is tremendous difficult. And we, as viewers, need to see individuals who mirror that.”
“To me, clearly, a particular, entertaining, hopefully gratifying completed product is so vital,” she provides. “However as a result of I am the one who’s making it, the journey of creating it’s an important half.”