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 411mania » Movies » Columns

411mania Interviews: Cheryl Hines
Posted by Al Norton on 01.09.2013

Cheryl Hines is a two time Emmy nominee for her work on HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm who is currently in her second year starring as Dallas Royce in ABC's Suburgatory.

Cheryl Hines: Thank you so much for my Norty Award; I was so thrilled to be named Best Supporting Actress.

Al Norton: You're welcome; you more than deserved it. And thank you for your acceptance speech.

Cheryl Hines: Of course.

Al Norton: Was part of the appeal of Dallas how different she was than who you played on Curb?

Cheryl Hines: Yes, Dallas is a 180 from Cheryl David and I really liked that. My background is with the Groundlings, doing sketch comedy and improve, building different characters, and Dallas seemed like a lot of fun; a little bit out there but still a real person. I was very drawn to her, and not just the role but the project itself was really well written, very smart and at the same time very silly, and I like that combination.

Al Norton: Not that you don't keep yourself in great shape anyway but is there added pressure when you know the outfits the show is going to put you in?

Cheryl Hines: Yeah (laughing). There is some added pressure. It's funny because I sort of go in and out of it. I know every week I'm going to have to wear really short, really low cut dresses so I know that already. Sometimes I feel like, "why do I care?" Dallas isn't a model, she's a real person with real flaws and doesn't have to have a perfect figure. I'll go through that and the next week I'll think, "10 million people are watching the show, can't you do a few sit ups?" I go up and down with it.

Al Norton: How long did it take you to perfect the voice you wanted to use for Dallas?

Cheryl Hines: It didn't take long. I was born in Florida and I grew up in Tallahassee, and my mother grew up in Jacksonville; my family is very southern. I am just sort of channeling my Mother, I think.

Al Norton: I know you're a pro but is it sometimes hard to keep a straight face with Carly's (Chaikin) line readings?

Cheryl Hines: It's very hard! We have a tough time sometimes, me and Carly. She does everything so deadpan, saying such outrageous things. At one point Dalia wanted a Hangover monkey as a pet and we had this heart to heart, Mother-Daughter talk and I kept having to say, "I know I'm not a Hangover monkey but I love you very much" and look into her big eyes looking so sad and it was really tough to do (laughing).

Al Norton: How many fans do you run into who think you and Larry David were actually married?

Cheryl Hines: Countless (laughing). A lot of fans, a lot of people in general. When the show first came out a lot of people thought it was actually a reality show, and my name was Cheryl on the show, so I can understand why it was confusing. I actually went it for an audition one time and the casting director said, "oh, you're an actress, too?" I was like, "what do you mean?" and he said, "aside from doing the reality show and being married to Larry?"

Al Norton: Any word on a 9th season of Curb and would you be a part of it?

Cheryl Hines: I see Larry all the time but he is very evasive, even when you're sitting in your living room talking to him he doesn't have a good answer to that question. Anything's possible and I would do Curb Your Enthusiasm until the day I died if I had the opportunity. I would always do it.

Al Norton: Is directing something you want to do more of (Hines directed the movie Serious Moonlight in 2009)? Maybe an episode of the show?

Cheryl Hines: It's interesting you ask that because I just directed a web series – I can't say anything about it because it hasn't been announced yet – and it was a lot of fun but very challenging. It's a lot of work…Ok, I'm just going to say it and this will probably set off firestorms but I found it tougher as a woman to direct and be in a project because you have to do hair and makeup – you don't roll out of bed looking like Dallas (laughing), it takes a small team of professionals – and when you're directing you have to be blocking shots and doing a lot of different things. Doing this web series I was always running back and forth and the poor makeup artist was always mad at me. The answer to your question is, "I don't know, I'm not sure."

Al Norton: Did I read correctly that the upcoming episode of Suburgatory features, and I quote, "an old fashion hip hop dance off?"

Cheryl Hines: Yes, you did read that correctly. George and Dallas are having differences with their parenting styles; after their PSAT's, Tessa got ice cream and Dalia got a car. There's a little tension there and we are watching the girls at a dance class and somehow the two of us end up having a dance off. Talk about keeping a straight face; watching Jeremy Sisto pop and lock was amazing.

Don't miss Suburgatory, Wednesdays at 9:30pm on ABC


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