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Allison Janney on Becoming an Action Hero in ‘Lou’ and What Makes a Great Awards Acceptance Speech

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Jenelle Riley Deputy Awards, Features Editor Allison Janney has found that, depending on the person and location, people want to talk to her about different projects. “Sometimes a person will come up to me and I’m sure they’re a ‘West Wing’ person but they say ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’ is their favorite movie,” says the 62-year-old actress. “Or I’ll think they’re about to talk about ‘Mom’ and they saw me in ‘A View from the Bridge’ on Broadway.

It’s really fun to have people know all these different things.” Yet after so many iconic roles, Janney is still finding she can do new things on screen.

Case in point, her latest movie, “Lou,” now available to stream on Netflix, finds her playing an action hero. Not only that, she’s the film’s lead – something she didn’t realize until an interview with Variety. “That’s funny, I hadn’t thought about that,” she muses. “But to be honest, I always think of working on things together as a group team effort anyway, so even if I was number one on the call sheet, it’s an ensemble thing – all acting is.” Janney plays the titular “Lou,” a mysterious loner who prefers the company of her dog to people and lives a quiet life in the woods.

As a storm rages one night, her tenant and neighbor Hannah (Jurnee Smollett) comes to her after her daughter (Ridley Bateman) is kidnapped by the girl’s father (Logan Marshall-Green.) Only then does Hannah (and the audience) begin to learn more about Lou’s past – and exactly what she’s capable of.

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