Missi Pyle is one of the most prolific actresses currently working in the business. From the stage to the screen to the internet, Missi has chosen a wide range of diverse projects in which she has been able to showcase her many talents. Over the years, she has worked with some of the greatest directors in the industry, including Tim Burton, Robert Benton, and most recently, David Fincher. She also appeared in a supporting role in the Oscar-winning film, The Artist.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet the one and only Missi Pyle!
CULTUREMASS: What do you look for in a script before you pick the project?
MISSI PYLE: I think there’s a misconception that there are always scripts lining up, but it’s either feast or famine. Obviously, the script has to resonate with me, but I usually look for something that would be fun to play.
CM: What would you say has been your most challenging role?
MP: I recently did Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters and I played one of the Three Fates, and I had to be covered fully in prosthetics. It took four hours to put them on, and I had to wear this prosthetic for stretches of about eight or nine hours. Initially, it didn’t seem like it would be much of a problem, but I had a panic attack. That was extremely hard. I did not expect that, and I’ve done prosthetics before in Pretty Ugly People.
CM: Tell us whatever you can about the new David Fincher project that you are a part of.
MP: It’s based on a novel called “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn. It was the number one New York Times best-seller. I play a news reporter. My agent told me not to get too excited, but I was just happy to be auditioning for David Fincher. I went in for this woman named Lorraine Mayfield who does all the casting, and I went in once and read it several different times. I came in again and he had some notes for me, and I ended up getting the part. Everyone told me that I would be doing a lot of takes, and he does do a lot of takes. That was one of the things that I was nervous about, but it’s also kind of exciting because he averages about twenty takes, if not more. There’s, like, a freedom that kind of starts to happen, and you get a little more out of your head with each take. I looked forward to that.
CM: Tell us about your experience at the Academy Awards.
MP: I had never done a movie that had been nominated, so it was really fascinating to be a part of it. I started by going to the Critics Choice Awards, and I asked them if I could go, and they said, “Oh, we don’t know.” But I got invited the next morning, and I made a deal with myself beforehand that I would sort of check my ego at the door, because I thought it was just a thrill to be invited along. I was asked by James Cameron’s wife to be the person who wore the dress – she has a contact called Red Carpet Green Dress, and they make eco-dresses for the red carpet out of recycled material and other eco-fabrics. I said absolutely, and so I got to go with them. It was fun also to be wearing a dress that was built for me and was quite beautiful and eco-friendly. It was a huge red carpet. First you do all the interviews, and then they drove me around and then I got to do the whole line of press. That was exciting. We sat in the back, and they said that if we win, we’d get to go onstage, and we all went onstage when we won. After it was over, I thought that I would probably feel a little sad, kinda how you feel after a wedding or whatever, but I never did. It was all so exciting.
CM: Is working on a film set like theatre, where you get to build a familial relationship with the people that you work with?
MP: Yes. It depends on the project. Especially if you’re on location. The thing about Hollywood, you know, the pool of actors, it’s easy to get weeded out as you get older. I see almost all of the same people at every audition. We all still see each other all the time, and usually are competing against each other. It’s a strange thing to be in the same room with your very best friend and to be like, “May the best woman win.”
CM: Are you planning to do any more work on the stage in the near future?
MP: Funny enough, my niece just put me on tape for a workshop of a musical called “Bull Durham”, which is based on the movie from 1989. I just found out that I got the part! I’m going to do that in January. It’s a good part. I’m also doing a web series which is sort of fun, called The Cleaners for Sony’s network, Crackle. I’m going to Puerto Rico in Feburary for three weeks to shoot more of that.
Be sure to check out Missi’s IMDB profile for more information!
Adam is a hardcore film fanatic. Some would call him a film snob. They’re probably right. He's been writing film reviews for as long as he can remember, and it is truly one of his passions. Aside from writing film reviews, he is also a screenwriter. He's written two shorts in the last year, one of which he plans to shoot in the spring of 2013. His favorite filmmakers are Stanley Kubrick, Terrence Malick, Ingmar Bergman, Michael Haneke, and David Lynch – simply too many to list here.