Money is always a problem for the Gallagher family and in Season 3 of “Shameless,” things are just as fiscally on the edge as ever. As usual, the responsibility for trying to keep the family from becoming homeless falls on Fiona’s (Emmy Rossum) shoulders, so she heads out into the job market.
To date, Fiona has been working as a cashier at a grocery store but when she discovered how gross her boss is, she tried to unite her co-workers against him. But the ladies voted against her instead of him, deciding that being able to take home expired meat and groceries is worth the price of a blowjob. Disgusted, Fiona, of course, will have to move on.
“None of these jobs that I’m working at right now will end up working out but I will get something that looks like an interesting job temping at a company that makes disposable cups for coffee,” says Rossum at the press day for her new movie “Beautiful Creatures,” now in theaters nationwide. “It’s called Universal Cup and I’m a telemarketer. I have a really cute boss that I’m kind of crushing on. So that’s coming.”
The cute boss could be a temptation, especially since Jimmy/Steve [Justin Chatwin] is just not the man she originally fell for. Now that she is the breadwinner and, not only is he no longer Steve, the hot car thief she originally hooked up with, he has become Mr. Mom, he just isn’t bringing “Sexy back.” So when Fiona fails to provide the support Jimmy needs, he turns to Este (Stephanie Fantauzzi), which could have serious repercussions for their relationship.
Both of Rossum’s roles — Fiona in “Shameless” and dark Caster Ridley Duchannes in “Beautiful Creatures” — have something in common. They both have their deeply, dramatic moments, but they also have great comedy to them.
“Ridley’s just a different, larger-than-life, campy, in-your-face, selfish character that I’ve never played before,” says Rossum, who was flying back and forth between sets to get the jobs done as the movie was ending as Season 3 of “Shameless’ was starting. “I was really taken by it when I read the script and then I read the book, and she’s just such an attention hog for the reader in the book. You want to read more and more about her and why she is the way she is and just her outrageous antics.”
Playing two roles concurrently also required Rossum, who sports short hair in “Beautiful Creatures,” to make a lot of costume changes that required her to constantly be changing wigs, clothing, and even her fingernails.
“When I have a character like ‘Shameless,’ it’s occupied a certain part of my life for a certain number of years. She’s very comfortable for me to put on like a good pair of jeans and the same with [Ridley]. Once you’ve spent a certain number of weeks or months as a person, they kind of have a little suitcase in your brain and you can unpack them and then repack them and go into something else. It becomes quite blurry, though, to remember who you are after all this because you have a certain number of characters in your arsenal that you keep visiting and you’re just like, ‘Oh wait. What do I like to do? What’s my name?’”
Happily, once Rossum would arrive on the “Shameless” set, she was able to take a deep breath, channel her inner Fiona, and get cheered up by her TV dad Frank (William H. Macy).
“He plays the ukulele all the time on set and all the drunk guys in the bar who are our regular staple of ten guys that are always in the alibi scenes in the bar, they’re musicians as well,” says Rossum, who just released “Sentimental Journey,” an album of classic songs from the ’20s to the ’60s. “So sometimes during our lunch break, they’ll all get together and do a jam session. So the guys, who are passed out on the bar, pick up their guitar, go over to the corner of the stage and we all make up songs. It’s fun.”
“Shameless” airs Sunday nights at 10/9c on Showtime. “Beautiful Creatures” is now in theaters nationwide.