Star of 'iCarly' Jennette McCurdy on Choosing Adult Roles: "I Don't Want to Offend Anybody"
The former Nickelodeon star says she's drawing on personal experiences to grow as an actor in Netflix's 'Between' drama.
Jennette McCurdy says she's getting powerfully in touch with her emotions while playing cynical teenage mother Wiley Day in the survivalist thriller Between for Netflix.
"This season, I've really being drawing on some of my most personal experiences to really bring out some truth," McCurdy revealed to the Hollywood Reporter as the second-season shoot nears completion in Toronto. The first-season finale saw no end to the quarantine at Pretty Lake after a mysterious disease killed anyone over the age of 21.
"I was doing it cautiously. I don't think I was taking risks. I was doing my job. I don't know exactly how much of my more emotional side I was putting into the character," McCurdy said of her first-season performances. The upcoming season of Between has Wiley maturing as a mother to her newborn son, Jason, and growing as an actor.
"I really believe it has to come from within," McCurdy said of dredging up personal experiences to portray Wiley's battle for survival against lawlessness and threats of starvation in Pretty Lake.
"You can only draw from personal experience because that's all we ultimately have. We're an accumulation of our experiences," she added. Portraying Wiley as a mother is complicated because McCurdy doesn't have children in real life.
"I can't draw on having a son, so I think of my dog. And that's the closest thing, that I have this tremendous love for this little, beautiful creature that I actually got after finishing last season," she said. McCurdy does the same with relationship struggles in the second season between Wiley and Adam (Jesse Carere).
"I can draw on my own experiences with relationships, even though I'm not in Pretty Lake with the town crumbling around me," she explained. Besides Between, McCurdy has lead roles in two upcoming films: the psychological thriller Pet in which she performs opposite Dominic Monaghan, and the comedy Little Bitches, starring Kiersey Clemons.
McCurdy is lending her voice to an upcoming episode of Robot Chicken and recently guest-starred on the IFC series The Birthday Boys and Comedy Bang Bang. The former Nickelodeon star, best known as Sam Puckett on the iCarly and Sam & Cat series, realizes her fans' expectations are in play with her latest role choices.
"I try to tell my fans that I'm trying to choose roles based on what I need to do for my career, and I don't want to offend anybody," McCurdy said. "I only hope people see me choosing these roles for personal reasons and affecting me positively," she added.
Netflix ordered Between as its first original Canadian production. It is directed by series creator Michael McGowan, who is producing along with Don Carmody in association with Elevation Pictures Corp.
Between, set for a second season bow in summer 2016, is executive produced by David Cormican and Naveen Prasad as well as Carmody and McGowan.