Back to One

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Back to One, Episode 105: Hannah Marks

Mega-talented multi-hyphenate Hannah Marks started writing Banana Split when she was still a teenager. It was loosely based on her real life. She rewrote it with her writing partner Joey Power as her acting credits piled up in stuff like The Runaways, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency. Then, after she co-directed her first feature (with Power), After Everything, she was able to get Banana Split made with herself in the staring role, directed by Benjamin Kasulke. In this half hour, she talks about the ups and downs of standing her ground and seeing the dream of […]

Back to One, Episode 104: Miriam Shor

Miriam Shor is unrecognizable as Lorraine Ela in the powerful new Netflix film Lost Girls. It’s the kind of performance that doesn’t feel performed, that doesn’t get recognized often because it’s invisible. We talk about that phenomenon this half hour, and break down a hilarious moment from the show Younger, where Shor played the beloved character Diana Trout. She talks about the importance of feeling like she is in collaboration with a director, and how being cast in a role you don’t think you’re “right for” can help you grow. Plus much more! Back To One can be found wherever […]

Back to One, Episode 103: Haley Bennett

Haley Bennett has given us some great work in films like The Woman On The Train and The Magnificent Seven, but her performance in Carlo Mirabella-Davis’s Swallow is so fully-realized, so ground-shaking, so important, it feels like an artistic re-birth. In this half-hour, she talks about facing the doubts and fears she had with revealing herself in the role of Hunter, the importance of the fruitful and freeing collaboration process with Mirabella-Davis, and how this truly emancipating experience changed her approach to the work. Plus much more! Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple […]

Back to One, Episode 102: Skylar Astin

He got his big Hollywood break with Pitch Perfect, but Skylar Astin had already made it to Broadway in the musical sensation Spring Awakening. Lately, it seems he’s been in every television show that features people breaking into song — Glee, My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and now the NBC hit Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, where he plays Max, Zoey’s best friend, who is secretly in love with her. On this episode, he talks about the hard work that goes into making that show, being bribed into his first audition as a kid, and how his stage experience continues to pay dividends in […]

Back to One, Episode 101: Zach Woods

I remember when I first saw Zach Woods. It was in the Armando Iannucci film In The Loop. His comedic sensibilities matched so perfectly with what I demanded as a consumer of comedy—bold choices, molded in subtlety, grounded in reality. He has continued to morph and advance his style with unforgettable roles on The Office, Silicon Valley, and now again for Iannucci on Avenue 5, where he plays cheerful nihilist Matt Spencer, Head of Customer Relations. In this inspirational episode, we have a far-reaching conversation on his approach to the craft and the industry in general. Summary: the greatest comedic […]

Back to One, Episode 100: Andrea Riseborough

It’s time we stop taking the preternaturally gifted British actor Andrea Riseborough for granted. She transforms so completely into her characters (appearance, accent, posture, mannerisms) that it’s easy to just believe she is the character and hard to measure her talents because we don’t know what “default Andrea Riseborough” is like. One thing is crystal clear though. She’s simply one of the best we have. On this, the 100th episode of Back To One, she talks about being surprised by the reactions to her chameleon-like abilities, how she uses the shooting environment (no matter how difficult) to fuel her work, […]

Back to One, Episode 99: Leslie Manville

The brilliant British actor Lesley Manville has given us two of the truly great cinematic performances of the last decade, Mary in Another Year and Cyril in Phantom Thread (which landed her an Oscar Nomination). But those are just two in a long list of living, breathing characters she has inhabited with subtlety, nuance and depth, both on the stage and screen. In this episode, she talks about her latest–Joan in Ordinary Love, her formative years with Mike Leigh, the necessity of director input, why she doesn’t want to take her characters home, and much more! Back To One can be […]

Back to One, Episode 98: Zora Howard

Zora Howard is a juggernaut. She stars in Premature and co-wrote the script with director Rashaad Ernesto Green. Her performance has an assured authenticity and a new brand of quiet desperation that is remarkable for a first feature. She’s been an award-winning creator for years though. Plays, poems, spoken word performances. Her play Stew just closed off-broadway to great acclaim. I gush about it and ask where her love of words began, and which of these various paths of creation she’s anxious to continue down. She talks about the necessary step of taking off the writer’s hat in order to […]

Back to One, Episode 97: Zoey Deutch

Acting wunderkind Zoey Deutch returns to the podcast on the occasion of the release of Buffaloed, the raucous indie she stars in (and produced) where she gets to flex her high octane comedy chops. We get into the weeds discussing comedy performance, she talks about striving to make her characters relatable, and about her love for auditioning (despite the hiccups). I delicately ask her what makes up the bulk of her now legendary script binder and she graciously explains. Plus much much more! Back To One can be found wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and […]