Succession 's Sarah Snook Originally Turned Down the Role of Shiv for Fear She'd Get 'Sidelined'

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
sarah snook
sarah snook

getty

Succession's Shiv Roy was nearly played by someone else — just ask star Sarah Snook.

The actress revealed on Thursday that she initially turned down the part over concerns about sexism in the high-powered world in which the show is set.

"When I first got offered the role, I said no, because of that," Snook, 34, told Variety. "If the world is going to be interested in a bunch of white dudes talking about business, and if I'm the only woman in that, then I'm likely to get sidelined and be like some sort of prop. I don't feel like that personally, nor do I feel like I want to compete for that. No, I don't want to do this job, and then it came back again."

She continued, "Through blind faith, I thought, 'Well, the creatives are interesting. You may be one of the only women in the pilot, but that doesn't mean that you're going to get sidelined necessarily and maybe this is an opportunity for you to just fight for female characters.'"

RELATED: Succession Cast Members Speculate How the Roy Family Would Endure Quarantine Together: 'Death!'

Snook pointed out that there's "a focus lens toward that kind of sexism" in the acclaimed HBO drama. "It is present in the show because it's present in real life, it's there, and that's inherent in the characters' behavior, as well as the things they say," she said.

"There is so much sexism and so much misogyny against you just having an opinion because you're a woman," she added. "It's so frustrating but brilliant to play with and chew on."

First Time Golden Globe Nominees
First Time Golden Globe Nominees

Macall B. Polay/HBO

If Snook hadn't taken on the role, she wouldn't have gone on to win countless awards for her performance.

The Australian star has been recognized with a Golden Globe Award, Critics' Choice Award, Screen Actors Guild Award and a Satellite Award. She was also nominated for an Emmy.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

Previously, Snook told Town & Country she still had insecurities after accepting her role on Succession — even after producers fought to get her on board. But over time, noticing her own approach to playing Shiv ultimately helped her feel more at ease.

"There's a taciturn nature to Shiv where she will observe and sit back, and part of that was just me going, 'Well, I don't have the confidence to improv in an American accent right now, so I'll just stand and watch and have an opinion, but not say it out loud,'" she said last year. "That fit Shiv."

Seasons 1–3 of Succession are available to stream in full on HBO Max.