Interview with Lisa Edelstein

myFanbase got the opportunity to do an interview with Lisa Edelstein, mostly known for her role as Dr. Lisa Cuddy on "House M.D.", but who also starred on "Felicity" and "Ally McBeal". She talks about her musical "Positive Me", her character Lisa Cuddy and her own "feelings" for Dr. House.

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1. A few years ago you wrote, composed and performed the musical "Positive Me". What can you tell us about it and how was it like to work on it?

At the time, the mid to late 80's, a lot of people I knew in NYC were suddenly becoming ill and quickly dying. There was little information available and a lot of suffering and fear. People were being left to die alone in the hospital because families and friends thought it was a plague. There was very little understanding in the general public how the disease even spread - and more importantly, how it DIDN'T spread. I wrote this musical to address those things as well as the stubborn reluctance of so many of us to learn how to take care of ourselves and protect ourselves in the changing times. It was an amazing experience, doing the show, difficult, frustrating, inspiring... I worked with some incredible people in the process and got an enormous amount of support from the theater, La Mama.

2. What kind of scripts are you interested in? What must a script be like to appeal to you and make you want to immediately work with it?

I love good writing. That's always appealing. I hope to find projects that are smart and interesting, or tell a story I think should be told. Not an easy feat. And I always hope that in the end it won't be embarrassing to watch. But it's very hard to watch yourself and not be horrified no matter how good something is, so that's a major hurdle I'm afraid I rarely achieve.

3. You are a vegan. When did you make this decision and is it sometimes hard to live as a vegan?

I'm actually a vegetarian. I have lived for bursts of about 5 years at a time as a strict vegan but I can't claim to be one for all the 26 years I've been vegetarian. It's no big deal, being a non-meat eater. It's a choice I made at a young age and it suits me well. I love to cook and I love food so I've made an art out of feeding people deliciousness. They never miss the meat when they eat at my house and they always leave full.

4. What is more important to you and why? Television or theatre?

I don't hold any more value to one or the other, I just like to do good projects. It's been a long time since I've done theater work and it'd be fun to do it again. There is something very special about that kind of audience/performer relationship. But being in front of the camera has a beautiful intimacy to it that I love as well. Honestly, I just love what I do for a living. I'll do it wherever it needs to be done.

5. When and why did you decide to become an actress?

When I was 3. I have no idea why, but as soon as I could put the sentence together coherently, I was telling my parents this was what I would do for a living when I grew up. I wasn't allowed to be a professional kid, but I was on stage as much as possible. If all I had to do was carry a sign across the stage, I'd do it and I'd be thrilled.

6. You have played a variety of roles (a transsexual on "Ally McBeal", a sexobsessed artist on "Frasier" and a hooker on "The West Wing"). How do you do your research on such roles?

I've known them all.

7. "House M.D." is getting a fifth season! What can you tell us about it?

There's some juicy stuff coming up... Great friendship difficulties between House and Wilson, a deeper and more complicated road for House and Cuddy, intense struggles for Thirteen, more stories of Chase and Cameron... we are only 8 episodes in (shooting-wise) and it's very exciting...

8. Could you imagine working with a person like Dr. House in real life?

He's totally my type: brilliant, screwed up, difficult and strong willed. I'm sure he'd be hell to work for, worse to work with and a horrible choice for a boyfriend. When's dinner?

9. How much of Lisa Cuddy is in Lisa Edelstein?

All of Lisa Cuddy is in Lisa Edelstein. The question is, how much of Lisa Edelstein is in Lisa Cuddy. She's a part of me, but I have a lot more fun than she does. Definitely.

10. Many fans would love to see a relationship between House and Cuddy. Do you think this is realistic?

I think they've always had a relationship of sorts. It will definitely get a bit more complicated, but it will never travel in a straight line.

11. Since myFanbase is an online magazine about TV series, do you have a favorite one?

I love shows like "Mad Men" and "Lost", "Project Runway" and "So You Think You Can Dance" (It's way too literal a title, but damn those kids are talented...)

I love reruns of "The Avengers" and I have a slight crush on the latest "Doctor Who".

Philipp Maslowski - myFanbase