'Jessica Jones' Showrunner on Defying Female Superhero Tropes: Ritter "Was Never Going to Play the Honey Pot"

"She was never going to put on the tight bandage dress and heels and go and seduce the guy she needs information from," Melissa Rosenberg tells THR of crafting the lead character of the Netflix series.

Jessica Jones showrunner Melissa Rosenberg had strict ground rules in mind when she created the ultimate female superhero to lead her Netflix series.

Speaking with The Hollywood Reporter for the annual Drama Showrunner Roundtable, Rosenberg revealed which genre tropes she wanted to squash in bringing Marvel character Jessica Jones to the silver screen. 

"She was never going to play the honey pot. She was never going to put on the tight bandage dress and heels and go and seduce the guy she needs information from," she said, explaining that the imagery is a "go-to" for almost every female cop portrayed on television. "That was just never going to happen." 

Rosenberg also went on to detail how she came to cast Krysten Ritter for the lead role.

"Casting Jessica Jones — you gotta believe she can kick ass. Some teeny little thing with arms this thin is just not gonna do it," she said, gesturing to her index finger. "She also has to be a great dramatic actress, but the hardest thing was she also has to be able to deliver a dry line."

Rosenberg added, "That’s why Ritter was always very close to the top of the list. I knew she could at least deliver a dry line, and then I saw her run in Breaking Bad and I’m like, 'Oh, she’s a dramatic actress too.' She’s phenomenal."

More roundtables featuring comedy and drama actors and actresses, comedy showrunners, and reality hosts and producers will roll out throughout June in print and online. Tune in to new episodes of Close Up With The Hollywood Reporter starting June 26 on SundanceTV, with the premiere of the Drama Showrunners Roundtable on Sunday, July 24. And look for clips at THR.com/roundtables with full episodes on THR.com after broadcast.

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