Gretchen Mol on "American Gigolo" Remake: "It was strange to be doing this kind of material"

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It's time to add to your must-watch list of shows this fall—and the "American Gigolo" remake on Showtime is definitely on Rach’s list. Actress and star Gretchen Mol stopped by to talk to Rach about the project—which is a contemporary twist on the classic film—and her family

"I am so psyched for this particular remake," says Rach. "When I was young, I vaguely remember how cool I felt because I went to see ‘American Gigolo.’ Yeah, it was smoking hot, attractive people. Lauren Hutton, Richard Gere. Wow, this is such a great, cool thing. It was a really big deal back in whatever it was, 1980 or something, a long time ago. You have to be of a certain age to even know what I'm talking about. Right? It is a whole new world for ‘American Gigolo’ today. Everyone is buzzing about what is now up, the first episode. It's now a series, and boy did it need to be. It is so brilliant, this thing. I got to see the first three episodes... and I'm telling you, wow. It is epic." 

When introducing Gretchen, Rach added “Lauren Hutton was smoking hot and very cool. But let me tell you, man, Gretchen Mol crushes it in this new series.” 

Rach wanted to know if Gretchen has any memories related to the original film. 

"I was a little on the young side when [the original] came out. It came out in 1980. So it would've been really inappropriate for me to see that. But I do remember seeing it a little. I was still young and it was a strange movie. I'd never seen anything like it," says Gretchen. " Like the fashion and Los Angeles..." 

Yet, there was an emotional level to the original as well. "It had a kind of, I mean, yes, the character is a gigolo, but it had this kind of lonely vibe in it. And anyway, now it's contemporary. We've put it in this time period. So it just changes it completely," explains Gretchen.  

As far as the premise, Gretchen says, "He's been in prison for 15 years. So he goes in 2006 for a crime he didn't commit, for murder he didn't commit. So he's been set up for murder. He comes out in the present day and...does he go back to work? What does he do? The landscape of this has changed him."  

"That's all in the first minute," says Rach. "The first minute. I'm not kidding. That's the opening thing. And there's Jon Bernthal... I'm such a geek for him... He's in The Accountant. He's in The Ghost Writer, the Den of Thieves. He's in so many of my favorite movies. I always love his performance, but this, I told her backstage, when you have two actors that are really bringing it, they got to be up ... They've got to bring their A-Game. This was like watching a final at the U.S. Open or something. It was so good."

"He was fantastic to work with... a great partner," says Gretchen. 

Gretchen also shared what it was like filming a series with such intimacy during the pandemic—when "everyone was so detached," as Rach put it.  

"It was interesting because we shot the pilot during the deep COVID times, so it was strange to be on set. It was strange to be doing this kind of material, which had so much intimacy," Gretchen explains. But "it was nice to just be back at work with such wonderful actors ... Rosie O'Donnell, Wayne Brady..."

"Rosie O'Donnell. She's outrageous," adds Rach.  

Gretchen agrees: "She's amazing. I mean, just fantastic actors." 

"[Rosie is] so fantastic in this. I mean, capital performance. Everyone is just mesmerizing... And to know that you guys did that during COVID trips me out. You know what I mean?" says Rach. 

"Yeah. It was very strange," says Gretchen.  

"I think putting the story in a contemporary time, you couldn't tackle this kind of material without addressing the sexual trauma...And why does this woman fall in love with him? And what's her story? And so we really do try to open up. The premise of it was so ripe with things to explore. And I think the show does a really good job of doing that," says Gretchen.  

Catch American Gigolo on Sundays at 9 PM on Showtime. We (along with Rach) can't wait to watch the next episode.  

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