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'Ringer's' Sarah Michelle Gellar Laughs About Playing Twins

"The joke is that I'm playing five characters," she says before her new show premieres on the CW Tuesday.

Ringer
The CW

Sarah Michelle Gellar plays twins Bridget and Siobahn in CW drama Ringer, which premieres Tuesday on the CW.

"Playing twins -- you don't think I took the easy route?" she quips to the Los Angeles Times. The former is an ex-stripper on the run after eyeballing a murder, the latter is her socialite twin sister who fakes her own death because she's facing trouble.

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"The joke is that I'm playing five characters," Gellar says. "I play Siobahn and Bridget present day, both women in flashback, and then 'Shivette,' which is when Bridget is pretending to be Siobahn."

Gellar, who is also co-executive producing her show, says times have changed since she starred in cult classic Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

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She takes naps during her lunch break because she wakes up early with her 1-year-old daughter, Charlotte (with husband Freddie Prinze Jr.), and Pottery Barn has designed an on-set nursery for the cast and crew.
 
"My family comes first, and you have to be in charge to be able to protect that. You have to be the one who says no or you don't have a life, which is what I found out the first time," Gellar -- who has also hired staffers from Buffy to join her on her new show -- tells the newspaper.

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"I don't want to feel like a failure to my daughter. She's the best thing I've ever done. Buffy — pretty great and all, but Charlotte's way better," adds Gellar.

Ringer showrunner Pam Veasey (who also produces CSI: NY) calls Gellar "very savvy about a lot of things… We're of the same rhythm; we understand how to solve problems. She's very smart about what we accomplish in a day."

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Buffy creator Joss Whedon says of Gellar, "She was such a precision instrument. The control she applied to every syllable was incredible."

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But, he tells the Times, "the downside to control is trying to get energy out of her. She used to say, 'I can cry any time, but don't ask me to laugh.'" Her nickname on the set was "Jimmy Stewart" because "she suffered so well — you could turn the screws and the audience went with her."

If nothing else, one thing will be lighter on the set of Ringer. Says Gellar: "We're not shooting at night. No graveyards. I'm telling you, you learn these things."

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