Laurie Metcalf. Photo: Magnus Sundholm for the HFPA.
  • Golden Globe Awards

Laurie Metcalf – 75th Golden Globes Nominee

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in any Motion Picture (Lady Bird)

Laurie Metcalf began acting in Chicago with the Steppenwolf Theatre Company. During the 80s and 90s she played Jackie Harris on the hit TV show Roseanne, a role for which she won three Emmy awards. Other television credits include; 3rd Rock From The Sun, Desperate Housewives and The Big Bang Theory. She received four Tony Award nominations and won Best Actress in a Play for her role in A Doll’s House, Part 2. She has starred in many films such as; Desperately Seeking Susan, Internal Affairs, JFK, Scream 2, Leaving Las Vegas and voiced Mrs. Davis in the Toy Story series. Currently she is receiving much praise for her performance in Lady Bird. “I’ve had the most fantastic couple of years,” says Metcalf, “When it rains it pours, I guess, right? There’s certainly no plan to it.”In Lady Bird Metcalf plays the mother, Marion, to a teenage girl played by Saoirse Ronan who starts rebelling against her. The daughter dyes her hair pink, and asks to be called Lady Bird. Metcalf’s character is stressed from work, disappointed in her life, and has to deal with her daughter’s selfish and unappreciative behavior, while trying to motivate her. “They’re misinterpreting each other. They’re looking for buttons to push. They’re passive aggressive,” Metcalf said. “We know that Marion and Lady Bird have a strong relationship, but it’s just dysfunctional at this particular moment that we’re watching. But it hasn’t always been like that and they’ll grow out of it.”Metcalf and Ronan work so well together and the on-screen mother-daughter chemistry is delightful and emotional to watch. They carry us into the complexity of the relationship and show us a genuine bond of that special relationship. “I loved that it was a very balanced relationship, that one of them wasn’t just a monster,” Metcalf said. “I think she’s being a great mom and doing everything within her powers to help her child succeed. It’s all coming from a positive place. It’s just a moment in their lives where there’s so much miscommunication and frustration and tension that everything escalates too fast.”“The part was very personal to me,” added the actress who is a mother of four, “I see the mistakes Marion is making because I can stand outside the role and see it, but also, I’ve been inside it. It’s coming from a place of love and support and teaching, and trying to make goddamn sure that before (your kids) go out into the world, they’re prepared at least, and knowing they’re not. But it comes out aggressive, and it comes out in ways that strip the other person of their confidence. I’ve been on the wrong side of that argument. I’ve said the things that I wish I hadn’t.”Despite Metcalf’s experience and well-earned praise she still has on screen nerves. “I’ve never been comfortable with a camera in the room,” she said. “I become instantly a little more uptight, a little more self-aware, and I don’t feel free. I wish I could shake it. But in all these years, even after all the hundreds of tapings of shows, I’m way too nervous for my own good.”