Amy Ryan has covered a lot of bases in her career. The actress has put in time on the set of “Law & Order,” got gritty in her role in “Gone Baby Gone” — for which she earned an Oscar nod — and most recently stars in beloved NBC sitcom “The Office” as Steve Carrell’s oddball love interest. But what’s the hardest kind of role to play? Normal.
“It’s easier to have the fireworks and the great dynamics of people who are living in deep turmoil and chaos,” Ryan admits. On the opposite end of the spectrum is her remarkably sane character in “Win Win,” the wife of a suburban lawyer (Paul Giamatti), who gets into trouble when he takes advantage of an elderly client. Giamatti and Ryan play a reasonably happy couple in the film — something we’re not used to seeing.
“The characters we play [in ‘Win Win’] are ones that pay off when you sit back and watch the movie as a whole,” Ryan continues. “It adds up slowly. The comedy comes out of their real experience, their behaviors in these dire situations, but it’s certainly not about landing jokes.”
Ryan has had a lot of experience with the latter type of humor; she’s just finishing her tenure on “The Office.” Since it’s Steve Carrell’s last season on the show, the general assumption is that his character and Ryan’s will ride off into the sunset. But getting any kind of spoilers out of the actress is almost impossible.
“One thing you can count on is that Holly and Michael belong together. But they’re so awkward, it’s not going to go off in any …” she pauses, catching herself. “Anything they do is not traditional. I can assure that it’s not like, ‘A very special NBC wedding’ to tune into.”
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