It was just a few years ago that Mamie Gummer was best known as Meryl Streep’s aspiring actress daughter. Though the physical resemblance to her movie-star mom is unmistakable, after playing roles as diverse as a shark of a lawyer who plays dumb on ‘The Good Wife,” a doctor with a scandalous secret on “Off the Map,” and Anjelica Huston’s hippie daughter on “Smash,” she has firmly established herself as a television star. She plays the title role in the new CW dramedy, “Emily Owens, M.D,” playing a brainy young woman who never got over high school emotionally.
Gummer is glad that she is now judged by her own work, not her lineage. “I completely understand, especially when I first started working, that was what everyone wanted to talk about and that’s fine. That’s fair. I just wish that it was a more interesting subject, that I had a better answer. She’s just my mom and she’s wonderful and both my parents are super supportive.”
According to Gummer, her parents never pressured her to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. “As long as I have a job and health insurance, they’re chill.” Though her mannerisms are so similar to Streep’s, she insists that her mother does not give her advice on acting or which roles she should choose. “She just gave me whatever good sense I have, period,” Gummer says. However, when the opportunity to play Emily came along, she sought her opinion. “I asked her to read the script and she liked it. Everyone kind of got on board with it because it’s a big decision moving from the East Coast up to Vancouver.”
Gummer was attracted to the role because she remembered as a teen going from watching the Disney Channel to “Sex and the City” and feeling that there was nothing in between that reflected the lives of women in their twenties. “I wanted a real life [feel], not just a glamorous, glittering show though, more like a real girl whose going through it.” The anything-but-glamorous Emily afforded her the opportunity to create the show she wanted to see. It’s a lot, a lot of fun to have license to slip up… She’s a human being. She kind of trips and falls down, but she gets back up and you want the best for her. ”
Watch an Extended Preview of “Emily Owens, M.D.”: