ML - Michigan Avenue

2014 - Issue 1 - Winter

Michigan Avenue - Niche Media - Michigan Avenue magazine is a luxury lifestyle magazine centered around Chicago’s finest people, events, fashion, health & beauty, fine dining & more!

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HBO show True Detective, with Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey? MM: I was pregnant. I wrapped that when I was at the end of five months, and I'd wanted to keep it quiet, so the only person I told was the costume designer. RM: Did you feel the presence of somebody else in the space with you? MM: That's the funny thing, because around five months you start to feel the movement of the baby. There was this really intense, emotional scene that I was doing with Woody, and the baby kicked me, but it was the first time that I felt it. I was looking at the close-up, and my eyes dilated when that happened; it totally took me out of the scene. It took everything in my power not to have this big grin on my face because for five months you're thinking, "Is this thing real?" And then it actually lives, and you're like, "Aww, here you are." RM: It is kind of bizarre that our movie Expecting is screening, and you've just given birth. How did you feel shooting that? MM: Working on that film was one of the best times I have ever had on a set. We were just laughing the whole time. I felt like we were a bunch of 15-year-olds, making a movie, playing dress-up, pregnant. I'm so used to my costars being male and having chemistry with actors that it was so refreshing to have chemistry with a leading lady. I really appreciated working alongside you and also working with a female director [ Jessie McCormack]. RM: It was great to dig into the female perspective with a female at the helm. MM: Completely. And it's not necessarily better, but it's fun and different, and we're talking about things that are inherent to us, so to have that perspective and collaborate with a female director.... When I finished that film, I went on to do another film with a female as well, and I was like, "Wow! I've got two in a row—the tides are changing." RM: Do you have any desire to direct? MM: No—absolutely not. RM: Really? MM: It's funny because I asked myself that question today; I was in the car, it was raining, and there was just this beautiful shot, and I thought, "That would be really nice to shoot." Then I thought, "Is that the way a director thinks?" And then I thought, "No, because then I'd have to come up with another 500 angles." [Laughs] And that's 96 where it is—it would be the world's shortest movie! RM: What a beautiful haiku moment, captured. You got your start modeling—how did you segue into acting? MM: I went to Columbia College in Chicago, and that's where I started modeling. It was my dream to be a journalist, but it turns out that Columbia is one of the best film schools, and here I was studying journalism and loving it—even though I dropped out my senior year because I had no idea what I wanted to do. I had this amazing opportunity sitting right in front of me, but it's just a testament to where your life takes you, and at that time I realized I didn't want to be a journalist. I knew I wanted to live in New York City, and I thought, "I'm going to move to New York, and I'll continue modeling for lack of anything else to do." It was there that I started going on castings for commercials, and a television series came to my modeling agency looking for an actress for a recurring role. The agency told me, "You've had good luck with some commercials; why don't you audition?" I got the job, and a former agent of mine in Chicago helped me set up some meetings with agents in New York. I'm still with that same agent today. RM: What are your favorite places in Chicago? MM: I lived in the Gold Coast, so The Original Pancake House is one of my top favorite places. One of my favorite things to do is to walk around that area. I always go to Ikram; she's an incredible buyer, and even if you don't purchase anything, it's just beautiful to go in and look at the pieces. RM: Because you live in LA now, do you miss anything about the Midwest? MM: I don't miss the extreme seasons, but I definitely miss fall. The other day, my daughter said to me, "Mommy, I want to jump in a pile of leaves." I looked outside and thought, Oh, dear, that's not going to happen. "The next time we go to Grandma and Grandpa's house," I said, "I'll get one of your uncles to rake up the leaves." Going home to Iowa in the summer is one of my favorite things. I look out at the cornfields—it's a backdrop of grain meets the blue sky, with the most gorgeous sunsets, and if you're holding a beer it's even more beautiful. RM: When you were growing up, your parents took in foster children. How did that shape you? MM: My mom and dad are pretty incredible. They MICHIGANAVEMAG.COM 094-097_MA_FEAT_CS_Winter_14copy.indd 96 1/10/14 2:44 PM

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