Elizabeth Olsen had a very unusual childhood. As the other sister to the Olsen twins, Elizabeth had a front row seat to her sisters’ experience in the spotlight, media circus included, but she also witnessed what it was like to be a working actor—something she wanted to be but was embarrassed to admit. As she says, “I had this fear that people would think I didn’t earn or deserve the things I worked for because of who I was naturally associated with.”
The nepotism critique motivated her to prove her worth, but really, Elizabeth’s a hard worker by nature. After all, you don’t get dubbed NYU’s notorious “Rehearsal Nazi” for nothing. And the hard work paid off because she started getting roles, including the one that led to her breakout performance in Martha Marcy May Marlene, before she graduated college. Since then, Elizabeth has conquered the world of independent film (Wind River, Kodachrome, Ingrid Goes West) and joined Marvel’s Avengers franchise as superhero Scarlet Witch.
She may play a superhero, but she’s still got her head screwed on straight when it comes seeing fame and adulation for what it actually is. She’s the kind of actor who loves the work, the craft, and she’s also the kind of artist who wants to take risks. Her newest project, Sorry for Your Loss, is a Facebook Watch series that explores grief, an uncomfortable subject that isn’t often examined in Western culture. But as you’ll see, Elizabeth will rise to any challenge thrown her way.
Elizabeth joins Off Camera to talk about the biggest lesson she’s learned from her family, why she may be one of the few actors who likes to audition, and why she’s the most Zen type A person you’ll ever meet.
Elizabeth Olsen opens up about experiencing panic attacks, and why she ‘didn’t want anyone to know’ at the time
YAHOO – The statuesque Elizabeth Olsen is the picture of poise, but she has ups and downs, just like the rest of us. The actress revealed to Build on Wednesday that while filming a movie earlier in her career, she began to experience panic attacks.
Olsen was visiting Build to promote her new Facebook Watch show Sorry for Your Loss. When asked about some of the most important lessons she’s learned from other actors, the 29-year-old got candid about her time on the set of a 2012 movie, Red Lights, working with legends like Sigourney Weaver and Robert De Niro.
“I did this movie called Red Lights that no one saw,” she recalled. “It was actually a really weird time in my life because I was experiencing panic attacks for the first time.”
She kept her struggle to herself, however, for fear of professional complications.
“I didn’t want anyone to know, because I thought they wouldn’t insure me or something,” she said.
And it wasn’t just one or two incidents. “I kept having panic attacks while filming, but I didn’t let anyone know. It was really weird.”
HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: Facebook Watch gets into the quality TV game with a dramatic exploration of grieving and memory starring Elizabeth Olsen, Janet McTeer and Kelly Marie Tran.
In an all-too-glutted landscape of scripted television, the path to programming legitimacy can take a while. It’s one thing to throw a show or two on your cable network or digital platform. It isn’t always the same thing to launch a show that cuts through the clutter and demands the attention of critics and viewers alike.
AMC did it fast with Mad Men. Netflix did it fast with House of Cards. On the other hand, look at Paramount Network and its tough run before Yellowstone. Or look at the number of shows Crackle produces that I could list to probably blank stares.
As an overworked TV critic writing for an overloaded TV-watching audience, it’s my sad duty or my pleasure to report that with Sorry for Your Loss, premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival this weekend and online Sept. 18, Facebook Watch is officially on the board as a potential destination for quality content.
That’s not to malign the reality shows starring Tom Brady and Lonzo Ball or something called Sacred Lies that I keep meaning to watch more of. It also isn’t to say that Sorry for Your Loss is flawless, top-tier television. It’s just the first Facebook Watch show to make me go, “OK, if this were on Showtime or Amazon, this might be in Emmy conversations.”
The series, created by Kit Steinkellner, has a strong pedigree, with Switched at Birth veteran Lizzy Weiss serving as showrunner and James Ponsoldt (The Spectacular Now) directing early installments.