Rebecca Metz, Actress on FX’s Better Things, an FX Original Series, Thursday 10PM on FX
By: Judy Shields
Los Angeles, Calif (The Hollywood Times) 9/29/2017 – “Whenever I talk to people about the show, I say, honest to God, I would tell you to watch it, even if I wasn’t on it!” Actress Rebecca Metz (Better Things), told The Hollywood Times during a telephone interview this past week.
Better Things is an American comedy-drama television series created by Pamela Adlon and Louis C.K. for FX, starring Adlon as a divorced actress who raises her three daughters by herself. FX gave a 10-episode order on August 7, 2015. The series premiered on September 8, 2016. On September 20, 2016, FX renewed the series for a second season, which premiered on September 14, 2017.
The show creator are:
Pamela Adlon – Actress | Producer | Writer -Pamela Adlon comes from an acting family and began her career in television in 1983. She has appeared in many popular TV shows, including as a voice actress in a number of animated TV series including, most famously, King of the Hill (1997) for which she won an Emmy for her role as Bobby Hill. Born: July 9, 1966 in New York City, New York, USA
Louis C.K. – Writer | Producer | Actor Louis C.K. was born on September 12, 1967 in Washington, District of Columbia, USA as Louis Szekely. He is a writer and producer, known for Late Night with Conan O’Brien (1993), Louie (2010) and Louis C.K. Oh My God (2013) Born: September 12, 1967 in Washington, District of Columbia, USA
Rebecca Metz play’s the Main Character Sam’s Talent Agent Tressa. Our interview follows:
THT: Did you decide at a young age that you wanted to become an actress?
RM: Yeah, I would like to say that it was The Muppet Show. I grew up watching The Muppet Show and the backstage screens on The Muppet Show, I was like that’s what I want to do, that’s where I want to be. I started doing theatre pretty young. Both of my parents were singers in all kinds of community chores and things. They would do a musical and they would need a kid and I would do that and I went to performing arts camps and there was performing arts magnet program in my high school and I have been aiming in that direction most of my life.
No one was going to talk me out of it.
THT: How did you get this role of Tressa in Better Things?
RM: When I heard the show announced, I keep a list of projects I am interested in, so I can let my manager/agent know about it and I wanted to be a part of the. I am a huge fan of Louie and Pam’s work with him and on her own. Casting director Felicia Fasano also cast me as a casting director on Californication, so she likes to cast me in industry roles and it’s kind of fun. She called me in for it and I read with a bunch of other people.
One interesting thing about the way Pam and Louie cast, you don’t get the material ahead of time. For most auditions you get the sides, the script that you are going to read at the audition. With Pam and Louie you just show up and get it when you get there, so you only have about 15 minutes with it. Everybody was reading the same material, she just wanted to see actors and so after the audition I got a call that I was going to be part of the show, but they didn’t know what role yet. It was you are going to be on the show, we just don’t know who you are going to be or how many episodes you are going to do. We will let you know, that was because Pam was still writing.
So overtime as the show developed, I found out that I would be Tressa and the role grew and I am still learning about Tressa, which is nice.
THT: With the second season just starting a couple of weeks ago, will we be seeing more of Tressa?
RM: Yep, I am in more of this season than I was in the last season. It is really exciting about the character. Pam wants the show to feel very real and not feeling scripted or fake, to feel like life.
Rebecca asked me if I have seen things from my life on the show that I recognize? There were several scenes from different episodes that I could relate to.
Pamela Adlon and Louis C.K, are amazing writers.
THT: How long does it take to shoot an episode?
RM: It was about two months this time around that I was working on it. It is really interesting, because this show does something called “cross-boarding” which means we shoot several episodes at once, and we shot all 10 episodes at once, whatever location we were in, we would shot everything that takes places in that location for all 10 episodes. So instead of a show like “Shameless” which I was on for three seasons, where you shot one episode at once, 8 days shooting one episode. So on Better Things, we might be shooting scenes from five different episodes, which is crazy to keep track of as an actor, and insane for the producer and crew. It’s all on location. The house scene is the same as last season.
THT: Do you prefer theatre over television/movies?
RM: I love them both. The acceleration of theatre is that there is no do-overs, you only get one chance to do it and the audience is right there with you. you feel them react. TV and film are exciting because it’s sort of the opposite, you can do things more than once. Spend a couple of hours on scenes. In theatre you get the whole play at once and everything about your character is given to you right at the beginning and spend the whole time working on that. In television, every time the new list comes out, I learn something new about my character and all the other characters on the show and you are playing someone, but constantly getting to know, and that is really fun as an actor, so I love them both. I am going to keep doing them both as long as people will let me.
THT: do you like to perform in small theatre venues or larger ones?
RM: I have done quite a bit of work in intimate theatres, especially working on developing new plays, which I really do love. I really enjoy being involved in the process of working with the writer who is still trying to figure out what the play is going to be and to help shape it and participate in that development process.
That usually takes place in the smaller theatres. I think there is something relaxing about going into a theatre and just knowing that you are there so the duration and you are going to watch whatever gets put in front of you and find value in it. There is something about live people performing in a room with an audience, there is an energy there that on camera cant’ really capture.
THT: do you have a charity you work with?
RM: I help with the silent auction for the ACLU. I’ve done some performance events where the proceeds were donated to Plant Parenthood. I would love to work with some animal rights charities, ASAP. That is definitely on my list to donate my time and to get involved with.
Rebecca said she had a cat in her lap as we were speaking.
THT: Is there anything else you might be working on in the near future?
RM: I don’t know what’s in store next, but I did a Disney movie called Magic Camp that will be coming out in April 2018. I have seen it and it is a great movie. It is a movie about card magic tricks, not the Harry Potter type of magic. I am playing a parent of one the kids that performs magic. The kids in the movie do incredible magic! We spend a few days shooting a scene where the kids do some magic and even sitting there for three days watching them, I still could not figure out how they did those tricks. They are so good and I can’t wait for people to see it.
THT: Do you have hobbies?
RM: Wine is my hobby. We love wine tasting and do a lot of cooking at home. When I have time and not working a ton, I have gotten into sourdough. I have gotten crazy and obsessed and looking at sourdough blast on my iPad. I have made my own starter and have some troubleshooting to do this weekend, especially now that the weather is getting cooler.
Better Things is a great television show on FX. It shows us all that there truly are better things in life! Click here to see a clip for Season 2.
You can also download the FXnow app to watch anywhere (except when you are driving a car!)
Season one is currently streaming on Hulu only.
Pamela Adlon – Sam Fox (20 episodes, 2016-2017) Mikey Madison – Max/Sam’s Eldest Daughter (20 episodes, 2016-2017) Hannah Alligood – Frankie/Sam’s Middle Daughter (20 episodes, 2016-2017) Olivia Edward – Duke/Sam’s Youngest Daughter (20 episodes, 2016-2017) Celia Imrie – Phyllis/Sam’s Mom (20 episodes, 2016-2017) Rebecca Metz – Tressa (10 episodes, 2016-2017) Alysia Reiner – Sunny (9 episodes, 2016-2017) Lucy Davis – Macy (7 episodes, 2016-2017) Greg Cromer – Jeff (6 episodes, 2016-2017) Milla Sofia Press – Paisley (4 episodes, 2016) Patricia Scanlon – Joy (4 episodes, 2016-2017) Cailey Fleming – Sorrow (4 episodes, 2017) Cuete Yeska – Reynaldo (3 episodes, 2016-2017)
Website: http://rebeccametz.com/ FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/rebecca.mitz Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheRebeccaMetz Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/therebeccametz/ Imdb: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1556548/
About Rebecca Metz
“I feel pretty lucky to be working in television right now,” says Rebecca Metz, who recurs in the critically acclaimed, award-winning F/X series Better Things, (Better Things), its second season premiering September 14. Rebecca returns as “Tressa,” talent manager and friend to Sam Fox (Pamela Adlon.) “This season, we learn more about Tressa, and I’m excited for the audience to get to know her better. Pam added such great depth and detail to the character.” Adlon is the show’s co-creator and executive producer, directed every episode in season 2, and is Emmy-nominated for her role as Sam. Before Better Things, she was best known for her roles as “Marci” on Californication, Louis C.K.’s on-again-off-again love interest “Pamela” on Louie, and for her Emmy-winning voiceover work. In addition to her Better Things role, Rebecca appears in the Disney movie Magic Camp, coming to theaters in the spring of 2018.
“The boundaries are being pushed further than they’ve ever been pushed before,” notes Rebecca. “There’s more of an interest than there’s ever been in portraying a truly broad range of people and characters.” And for this accomplished character actor, that means more opportunities to show her remarkable range in both comic and dramatic roles on some of today’s most groundbreaking shows. Since graduating from the prestigious Carnegie Mellon School of Drama, Rebecca has made her mark on television in a string of memorable guest roles on dozens of popular and critically acclaimed shows, from Nip/Tuck to Weeds to Maron. Most recently, she appeared on Grey’s Anatomy, Bones, Major Crimes, and in recurring roles on Lopez and Shameless.
A proud Jersey girl born and raised in Bruce Springsteen’s hometown (Freehold, not Asbury Park — look it up), Rebecca was drawn to acting from an early age. Her parents, both classically trained singers who perform in community choirs, inspired her to follow a creative path, as did a favorite childhood TV show. “I honestly think the impetus for wanting to be an actor came from watching The Muppet Show,” she says with a laugh. “And from the backstage scenes, where they’re all freaking out and having a crisis and trying to keep from showing it onstage. I thought that looked really fun.”
After studying theater and the performing arts in high school, Rebecca was accepted into the highly competitive acting conservatory program at Carnegie Mellon. Most of her classmates aspired to work on Broadway or in film, but she harbored different ambitions. “My background is in theater and I will always come back to it, but I wanted to be on television before it was ‘cool,’” she says. “I’ve always loved TV. It just felt like the right place for me.” Early in her career, Rebecca made the most of small roles on The King of Queens, Gilmore Girls and Scrubs among many others. (She once spilled a tray of drinks of Maura Tierney while working on ER — sorry, Maura!)
Then she took a huge leap forward with a pivotal, graphic role on Ryan Murphy’s plastic surgery drama, Nip/Tuck. Even on a show known for controversial characters, Rebecca’s fearless turn as masochistic patient Abby Mays stood out as one of the series’ most memorable. When Rebecca was offered the challenging part, she remembers thinking, “OK, here’s where I find out what I do when faced with a really great role that will demand a lot of me psychologically and emotionally. And I was really excited about it.” And her courage paid off. “I got to go in for bigger and better roles after Nip/Tuck,” she says. “It changed everything.”
After Nip/Tuck, Rebecca began landing more dramatic roles on shows like Boston Legal, The Mentalist, Justified and Southland. But her comedic skills have continued to serve her well, too, on Weeds, Californication, The Mindy Project, The Thundermans, Maron and particularly Shameless, on which she appeared for three seasons as the foul-mouthed Melinda.
“I really like the current trend in television right now that blurs the line between drama and comedy. I think that’s how life tends to be,” Rebecca notes. And even on comedies, she adds, “I like characters with a dark streak. I like characters who find comedy in darkness. I like characters that let me push myself to make a big choice.”
In addition to her frequent television and commercial work, Rebecca has appeared in numerous independent and short films, most recently Jake Hoffman’s Asthma (2014). She is also a voiceover and stage actor whose theater credits include Sheila Callaghan’s Kate Crackernuts (24th Street Theatre) and Burglars of Hamm’s award-winning musical, The Behavior of Broadus (Sacred Fools).
But today, there’s no question that Rebecca is all about the small screen. “Television is going to places it’s never been before,” she declares. “And I get to be a part of that. Every time I go to work, or even go to an audition that is in the front of my mind. I feel very fortunate to be here for it.”