Entertainment

Mary Steenbergen says her ‘Happiest Season’ character was very familiar to her

Courtesy Sony Pictures(LOS ANGELES) — On Wednesday, the Hulu holiday romantic comedy Happiest Season debuts on the streaming service

The Sony Pictures romantic comedy — directed and co-written by actress and filmmaker Clea Duvall — features an all-star cast including Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Davis, Alison Brie, Dan Levy, Victor Garber, and Mary Steenbergen. 

In the film, Stewart’s Abby and Davis’ Harper are a couple who travel together to Harper’s family for their annual Christmas festivities, with Abby secretly plotting to pop the question.  But there’s a big catch — once they’re on the road, Harper confesses to Abby that not only has she not told her conservative family that they’re a couple, they don’t even know she’s gay.  

Oscar-winner Steenbergen plays Tipper, Harper’s high strung mother, who’s obsessed with her husband’s political future and all the parts her seemingly perfect family must play in it. Steenbergen tells ABC Audio that while she didn’t grow up wealthy in Arkansas, the character was very familiar to her.

“I grew up knowing this Southern version of this woman,” the actress explains. “I would occasionally meet these kind of wealthy Southern women, and I felt like Tipper was a version of that — who long ago started focusing on this idea of perfection that was going to make everything fine in her life if she ever achieved it. And of course, it’s ridiculous, but it was important to her.”

By Stephen Iervolino
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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