I remember, years ago, reading an interview with Marisa Tomei and she just came across as one of the coolest women ever. Not in a “Cool Girl” way, but in a “she genuinely DGAF what you think” way. I remember she was chatting about picking up guys at Fleet Week in New York (when all the sailors port) and how she has a huge group of girlfriends, and she was too busy and having too much fun to settle down. But something happened – Marisa got to that age where she began to get tons of scripts and offers to play “the mom” or “the mother figure.” And she started to take a few of those roles and now those are the only scripts she gets. She chatted with Collider about playing Pete Davidson’s mom in The King of Staten Island, and playing Aunt May in Spider-Man and all that. Some highlights:
On playing moms/mom-figures now: “I really regret starting down this road and I really regret starting to do that. I was, you know, talked into it – not this, but I mean just that change – and I really always felt like, ‘Oh, I could play a lot of things.’ Honestly, it’s probably more of a stretch than other things. [Laughs] But, it’s – yeah, I guess I said it all.”
Why she agreed to start playing mom roles: “I think every actor and actress has a lot of dimensions to them and if the scope of what is being written and being made is narrow, and you want to keep working, you do what you can. I mean, I do. I tried it. It was maybe not the right road, but you know, I do try to make the most of it.”
What kinds of roles she would prefer: “I mean, even genres that I would love to be in, you know? The femme fatale, and in a noir. I still think there are other aspects of even romantic comedies. I really love them, but you know really at a screwball level. There’s so many, many – the breadth of as much as women are, there’s so many roles.”
Now I feel bad for her. I mean, yes, she’s playing a “MILF” for a lot of teenage boys’ fantasies, but it must be the absolute worst to want to work and then she ended up getting typecast in mom roles. And she’s right – she’s a gifted comedienne and a great romantic lead, and a great actress overall. It’s Hollywood’s issue – they can’t see a hot 50-something woman as anything other than a Hot Mom. Also: did you know that Marisa is 55 years old? Jesus Christ. Replace all of the Columbus statues with statues of Marisa Tomei.
Photos courtesy of WENN.