A funny thing happened on the way to trying her hand at writing: Anne Dudek became television’s go-to guest star.
“None of those things were designed to be what they ultimately became,” explained Dudek on her recent string of Emmy-worthy guest appearances on the likes of HOUSE, BIG LOVE and MAD MEN. “Right before all this happened, I was really excited about writing.”
“I had no idea what [MAD MEN] character Francine Hanson was going be and it turned into something that was a little bit bigger, where at least for that season I sort became a presence in that show. And at the same time, the same thing had happened on BIG LOVE. I had this tiny, tiny little part which was weird and fun [playing Alby Grant's partner-in-crime, doting wife Lura] and they just sort of kept bringing her back. And then I auditioned for HOUSE where my character was never meant to really be chosen as one of the permanent fixtures on the show. But because people really responded to that character, I was brought back. I think that’s the thing: I happened to pick things that in themselves grew into something more. It wasn’t like all of a sudden I landed all these big roles, I just landed these little things that became more than what they were meant to be which was nice.”
Particularly for the audience, who over the course of the last few seasons has come to the understanding that when Dudek appears on screen, something interesting, to the say the least, is bound to happen.
Also nice, that after years of playing what the actress herself lovingly refers to as “a manipulative bitchy doctor on HOUSE, “a psychotic murderess on BIG LOVE,” and a character on MAD MEN “who is a little coo-coo,” the actor is finally getting the chance for a little normalcy.
Or, at least as much normalcy as a show on USA Network allows, where Dudek will finally earn that much-deserved series regular credit playing Danielle: The older, slightly more mature sister to Annie [Piper Perabo] on the upcoming spy series COVERT AFFAIRS.
“Danielle’s function in this show is that she is the mainstream choice, has the dream life, the husband who has the stable job making good money and two cute kids who are adorable,” explained the actress who took some time from s hooting to talk to a group of reporters in a kitchen set that looks as if it was ripped directly from the pages of Architectural Digest. “It hits a little bit closer to my own life because I’m married and just had a baby. And so it’s fun, because I get to deal with situations and relationships that feel more normal. And feel more accessible to me and to the people I know, and it’s fun to live in that world.”
That said, fans of the actress who are concerned to hear “Dudek” and “normal” in the same sentence needn’t worry.
“I think you’ll find during this first season that it’s not all perfect for Danielle either who will have to deal with her perfect dream having some cracks in it,” said the actress re-assuredly.
And if anyone knows a thing or two about life not going as originally planned, it’s the writer turned television star!
You can catch the series premiere of COVERT AFFAIRS on Tuesday July 13 at 10PM on USA