Alyssa Milano talks to Yahoo Entertainment about her new Netflix film, Brazen. The actress also opens up about how her activism has made her braver.
- And that's when Detective Stanton started to dig because whoever reduced Sarah Bowman to a bloody pulp might be as unremarkable as she was.
- What are the most important aspects you consider in potential film or TV projects these days, and how did Brazen deliver on those?
- Perspective. Telling stories from a specific perspective. And then I kind of look at all of the components. Like this was based on a Norah Roberts book. It had a wonderful director named Monica Mitchell. Sam Page and Malachi Weir are my co-stars. So you know the whole package. And then I think on top of all of that there's also an element where I don't want to do characters that I've already done before. In The Now, the Farrelly brothers series that I did, I played a tow truck driver with purple hair and a nose ring. Obviously Insatiable, I play this Southern Belle. So I really love finding those rich, rich characters often funny. Although Grace in Brazen, she's grieving so there's not a lot of comedic moments. But there is some romance which is fun.
- There's an interesting kind of meta exchange between Grace and her sister where they discuss the difference between objectifying women as victims or commenting on their exploitation. Is this something you carefully look at when choosing projects, the nature of how women are portrayed?
- For sure and it was certainly important with this film that we got that right. And we worked very hard with the writer and the director to make sure that we were saying things out loud that we all believe to be true. Which is sex work is work. That people sometimes do things because they have to and that we do very little to protect the vulnerable. I knew that if we could get all of those aspects into this that it was going to be a truly empowering film for women to watch.
- Have there been projects that you've turned down because you thought the role or the movie was sexist?
- Probably not. I feel like things are shifting rather quickly now. Storytelling is a lot different in a post MeToo era than it was before MeToo. So I think now we're very conscious of, or at least I am, I'm very conscious of know not exploiting someone's sexiness or beliefs or anything like that. So it's just different. It's different now.
- How is your activism affected your acting career at all? Has it like one way or the other?
- I think so, yeah. I think my activism has made me a lot braver in my acting. It takes a certain amount of guts to go testify in front of Congress on behalf of the Equal Rights Amendment, or go sit down in a room with Ted Cruz, which I've done and talk about gun violence prevention. Those moments in my activism are pretty easy. I become pretty fearless because I think that there is a warrior instinct almost because that work is so fulfilling to me. And so I've been able to take that courage and that ability to not really care what people think into my acting. Which I think has made me a better actor, for sure. I'm certainly less self-conscious. And maybe that's just comes with age and just being more comfortable in my skin. I feel really good about how the two are married right now. There were many times in my career and my activism where I felt like they weren't working in harmony. But now I really believe that there is real meaning to having a platform. There used to be a time when we would only be able to talk about issues that matter to us when we were given the opportunity from whether doing an interview, or an article or about you or something. But now because of social media we get to control our own narrative. And so I do think it's a lot easier to sort of marry those, all of the parts of who I am. Including being a mom and a wife and a businesswoman and a writer and all of it.