Sunday, January 29, 2012

What I Learned from Piper Laurie

Last night I attended a screening of Carrie at the Landmark Loews in Jersey City. In attendance was Piper Laurie, who was much more charming than the character she played in the film--if slightly less murderous. The pre-film Q&A was even more enlightening than I was expecting. Here are a few fascinating tidbits I learned from the actress:

*After reading the Carrie screenplay, Laurie assumed the movie was a comedy, and only learned it wasn't when Brian DePalma told her to tone down her performance. She did, but just a tiny bit.

Mr. Tojamura, the Japanese businessman her character Catherine Martell masqueraded as on "Twin Peaks", was entirely her own creation. David Lynch gave her carte blanche to choose any ruse she pleased. It was her idea to make the character a Japanese businessman.

*The only people who were aware that Laurie was Tojamura were Lynch, Derick Shimatsu (who played Tojamura's assistant), presumably Mark Frost, and Laurie, herself. Even Jack Nance and Richard Beymer didn't know this despite sharing close scenes with her. They weren't aware of the con until receiving their scripts for the episode in which Tojamura's true identity is revealed. Peggy Lipton thought the character was being played by Isabella Rossellini!

Learn more fascinating facts about Piper Laurie in her new autobiography, Learning to Live out Loud:
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