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it’s always helpful for an actress to meet the person who inspired her character. For Susan Sarandon, who plays a domineering mother in the new comedy The Meddler, that moment came when writer/ director Lorena Scafaria introduced Sarandon to her mother.
“On our way to dinner, I told my mother, ‘ You can’t embarrass me in front of Susan Sarandon’,” Scafaria joked. “And I only had to kick her under the table once, or maybe twice!”
In a separate interview, Sarandon laughed at the memory of that dinner. “The best part is, they came dressed alike,” the 69- year- old actress recalled during a recent telephone interview. “I brought Rose Byrne, who plays my daughter in the movie. We came dressed alike. I just sat at that dinner knowing that this movie would touch a lot of people,” she said. “A mother- daughter bond is magic. I knew this was a very real and loving relationship.”
In The Meddler, premiering in the US on April 29, Sarandon plays Marnie Minervini, a lonely widow from New Jersey whose husband has recently died. She follows her daughter, a television writer named Lori ( Byrne), to Los Angeles in the hope of starting over again. Soon, however, old patterns reassert themselves and Lori finds her mother intruding into every corner of her life.
Scafaria, who based the movie partly on her relationship with her own mother, said that Sarandon was her first choice to play the meddling Marnie. “I met Susan, and it was a matter of building the world in this movie around her,” the writer/ director said. “My actual biological mother was my inspiration... There was certainly a lot made up along the way. But my mother did move to L. A. and… Well, we’re having fun!” BLURRED LINES: Susan Sarandon plays a mother who can’t leave her daughter alone in new comedy