Maude Apatow knows you think she's a product of nepotism, and she wants to prove herself
Maude Apatow, Judd Apatow's 22-year-old daughter, has been trying to make a name for herself as an actress for several years and is now in two new projects: her father's summer comedy "The King of Staten Island" and the Ryan Murphy Netflix Show "Hollywood ".
Shortly before the corona virus became a global pandemic, Maude Apatow planned to finally move out of her parents' house. She had found a couple of apartments that piqued her interest and planned times to visit them. But when the city was closed, she put her plans on hold and instead crouched in Brentwood with her mother, father, and 17-year-old sister.
"It was fun, I think - there are definitely ups and downs," said 22-year-old Apatow with an insightful smile. She had retired to her mother's office to do a zoom interview, one of the few places in the house where she isn't worried that "someone is starting to scream or embarrass me".
During the quarantine, the actress and her father, director Judd Apatow, discussed the possibility of releasing his new film on demand instead of postponing its theatrical release. The film "The King of Staten Island" shows the "SNL" comedian Pete Davidson as a would-be tattoo artist who has trouble finding his purpose after his father's death. Maude plays a supporting role and plays Davidson's sister - the younger but more mature sibling who leaves college while her brother is still living at home.
"When my father told me about the release plans for the first time, there was an opportunity to wait a year, like so many films that were released," she recalled. “And we said, 'I feel like a lot of people are watching it because everyone has gone through so much content. 'I'm sad I haven't seen it with an audience, but it could be a good time to cross my fingers. "
In a BTS sweatshirt she had bought at a concert by the K-pop band, Apatow spoke to The Times in mid-May about her new film, her roles in the television series "Hollywood" and "Euphoria" and made a name for herself.
Actress Maude Apatow (right) and her father Judd Apatow (2016) at Sundance. (Danny Moloshok / Invision / Associated Press)
You starred in some of your father's films as a child. How did he get the idea that you were performing on Staten Island?
It was pretty close when we wanted to shoot. Pete had said something about it and I don't think my father was very open to the idea at first. I think he was hesitating. But I read it with Pete and it made sense. I have known Pete for a long time and I have the feeling that he is important to me. Having a relationship made it easier to play with him.
Were you worried that you only get the part because he was your father?
I definitely thought about it before I made this film. Obviously, I've starred in so many of my parents' films, and people will say it's nepotism. I mean, it's not even an insult - well, it's an insult, but it's what it is. But because I had just done "Euphoria" and started doing other projects that showed that I was able to work without their help, I was concerned about it. But then I thought, "I haven't worked with my father since I was 12" and I really see him as a mentor in my life. I want to be a director one day and it is very important to me to watch my father do what he does. I don't know when I'll ever do it again and it just felt like, "Why shouldn't I do it?" I will spend my whole life trying to prove myself as an individual and that is a chip on my shoulder. It is very important to me to show that I work really hard because I do it. I want to be an individual.
How was it different with him when you were 12, when you were in your 20s?
I played as a child, but not really because I was so young. My father said this the other day: "It was almost like a simulation of our real life." We did what we normally do at breakfast or whatever. And now - I would never tell him because it's difficult to tell my father - I wanted to do a good job for him and his opinion of me as an actor is probably the most important one for me. But my father also takes self-shots with me and knows how to become a better actor.
Does he read lines with you during these auditions?
Yes. However, I have to stop taking self pictures with him. We did a self-tape for "The Beach Bum" with Matthew McConaughey, and my father exaggerates and impresses Matthew McConaughey. And I said, "This is terrible."
Maude Apatow was about to move out of the family home when COVID-19 became a global pandemic. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
You studied theater at Northwestern University for two years until you left theater in the second year. Why did you make this decision?
I always knew that I was ready to work. I felt very ready to leave. I don't want to sound nervous, but I was very ambitious. When I got to college I started auditioning all the time - auditioning. And then I got "Euphoria" and it just wasn't realistic to be able to fly back and forth from Illinois every week. I haven't completely postponed school yet. I might still want to go back someday.
Did you like it when you were there?
Oh yeah. I had a lot of fun and I'm really happy that I left. I was in a sisterhood - Tri Delt. And we went to soccer games and did tailgating and I think that's why I liked Northwestern because it was very academic but we had a lot of fun.
You said that part of what appealed to you about "Euphoria" was how the show was an OCD. What experiences have you had with fear?
Although it sometimes makes work a lot more difficult for me, I really do everything I can to keep it from getting in the way. Even in this interview, I'm panicked all the time. I get very nervous when I am there or have to talk for a long time. I had really bad obsessive compulsive disorders in middle and high school. I went to OCD. My parents helped me a lot to get help, read books about it and learn about mental health at a young age, and I think that was a big advantage for me. Obviously, I'm not done learning and it's still a problem. But I think I've arrived at a place where I can work more productively. But seeing "Euphoria" and letting her talk about obsessive-compulsive disorder and this pressure - I had never seen it on a show where it felt so real and I felt so connected.
Actress Maude Apatow, producer-director Judd Apatow, actress Iris Apatow and actress Leslie Mann at a premiere. (Jason Merritt / Getty Images for MTV)
How did the pandemic affect your fear?
Pretty bad. With surfaces - now they say it's not really that common, but I always think about it anyway. As someone who is anxious or obsessive-compulsive disorder, you have thoughts all the time, but you have found a way to put them aside and dismiss them. But if, like now, it becomes a real problem and it constantly looks you in the face, you can justify these thoughts. I've been stressed out for the past few weeks.
How do you deal with your fear?
My parents really like mediation, so they always told me to meditate. The Calm app Headspace… Reality TV is another thing that gives me the feeling that I can completely relax and distract myself in something else. "Ru Paul's Drag Race." I fall asleep at "The Great British Bake Off" because it makes me feel super relaxed. "90 days fiance." I still can't believe Lana was real. She didn't even hug David with two hands. I say to people, "If you haven't seen it, it's the best reality show I've ever seen." I can't even believe what I'm seeing. It feels so invasive and it is so crazy. I watch every split.
Do you feel like you are on the way to establishing yourself outside of your parents after launching three major projects within a year? (Apatow's mother is actress Leslie Mann.)
I always think I have to keep going. I don't know how to say that without sounding emo, but I'm pretty hard on myself. I should stop and be happy sometimes, but I'm very focused on the next attitude. I look up to Lena Dunham and Phoebe Waller-Bridge because they act, write and direct. I also think of Emma Stone as someone I look up to - comedies and then super dramatic roles. I saw her in the "Cabaret" in New York. Seeing that she can do all of this is really cool for me. And my father always encouraged me to write for myself. He will give me written advice, even if I don't always take it. He gives really good advice, although I don't like to tell him that. I instinctively have to say, "I don't agree," but he's right most of the time.
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