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Connie Britton faces harsh reality in ‘Dear Edward’ role


In-demand actor Connie Britton chooses her roles, like the semi-oblivious Dee Dee in AppleTV+’s new “Dear Edward” series, carefully, giving thought to what they may represent.

Dee Dee is an upper-class Manhattan matron who rarely sees her busy husband and celebrates her only daughter’s birthday with a lavish Champagne lunch and boutique buying spree.

Like every character in the series, Dee Dee’s life changes when a NY-LA flight crashes, killing everyone except 12 year old Edward Adler.  Now Dee Dee must navigate an unexpected, eye-opening new chapter as a widow.

“When we started this, I just fell in love with Dee Dee,” Britton, 55, began in a Zoom interview. “It just gave me joy every time I thought about playing her and finding her heart. Even in this over-the-top facade of a life that she’s created for herself, that she believes represents her.

“I loved the idea of being able to dig in and have fun with that. And at the same time explore what it would be to have that totally shattered. It was a great opportunity.”

While Dee Dee’s daughter worries about her parents’ marriage, Dee Dee is clueless. Is she intentionally avoiding all unpleasant realities or simply an airhead suddenly forced to face unpleasant realities?

“I think everybody’s smart in their own way,” Britton answered. “I also think everybody has air in their head and some people maybe have more than others. Certainly, she filled a lot of space with air so that she could maintain this façade-like life that she was living. Then when that was punctured, she had to understand what was underneath all that and fill that space up again.

“I wouldn’t say that she’s not a smart person. I just think that she was very attached to an idea of herself that felt important. That she had created over time.”

Britton realizes the real-world impact her characters can have. “I think very carefully about each role. I have been so fortunate to realize the reach that we can have in our storytelling.

“There’s no greater success and joy for me,” said the “Nashville” and “White Lotus” star, “than when somebody comes up and says, ‘You really changed the way I think about being a mother,’ Or being a wife — or whatever it is. Or with ‘Dirty John,’ I had an experience like that! I felt so ‘seen’ to see that role.

“And I realized we do really have an opportunity in telling these stories to help people know themselves better. And maybe think about bigger issues in a different way.”

AppleTV+ streams the first 3 episodes of “Dear Edward” on Feb. 3




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