MONDO EXTRAS

The Mayim Bialik Q&A

Most people remember Mayim Bialik as the quirky '90s sitcom character Blossom, but after Blossom ended, Bialik faded from the public eye quickly. She headed off to college (she's got a doctorate in neuroscience!), got married and had two kids. Now she's making her way back into the wild world of acting, with a recent brief stint on Bones and now a guest spot on the TNT series Saving Grace. We recently got a chance to chat one-on-one with the lovely Ms. Bialik about playing opposite Holly Hunter, juggling kids and a career and what it was like to be ambushed by the folks from the makeover show What Not to Wear.

TWoP: Tell me a little bit about this character that you're going to be playing on Saving Grace.
Bialik: I'm playing the daughter of the murder victim in the episode, and it's actually an episode about a Hasidic family. I have some Hasidic family, so that's kind of funny also. It's also funny because it came about kind of right after What Not to Wear made me over and had me in all these tight, short clothes, so I was saying, 'you know, it's good that I kept one long skirt for the audition.' I think that might have gotten me the role, was not coming in wearing a mini-skirt.

TWoP: Does your character interact with Grace?
Bialik: Yeah. Actually, for my audition scene there were a couple scenes with Holly Hunter's character, but I was really pleased that there are actually several more. I think to work with Holly Hunter is tremendously exciting, but I think to work with her on a TV show is also even more exciting, because I was, you know, kind of born and bred with sitcoms, and here she is, this Academy-Award winning actress who is really immersing herself in television. It's a different format... it's completely different. But I felt like I got to study her, you know? I got to see what it's like to be, you know, a trained movie actress performing in television. It was really fascinating.

TWoP: Plus, this character is so fleshed out.
Bialik: Oh yeah. She really treats it like a film -- every episode, really, I'm sure, because mine absolutely felt like a little film. She was very detail-oriented, and it was very important to her that it be authentic in terms of the Jewish stuff, because there's scenes in the temple and there's scenes with prayer and it was nice. They asked my opinion on [it] and "Is this stuff that you would do in the temple?" and it was very important to her that it be authentic, and I think that's what makes that show so strong, the attention to detail.

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