While a show featuring two female leads is no longer a novelty, it’s still rare for one to go as deep into the lives of these women as Firefly Lane does. (For the sake of spoilers, I’ll refrain from saying more.) Says Chalke, “Getting to watch these two characters find their voice and go from pleasing other people to realizing what they want—it was the unicorn job that just has all the things. That is so rare.”
But Chalke and Heigl will be the first to tell you their roles didn’t come without a healthy amount of fear. Here, they open up about taking necessary risks, the burden of being people pleasers, and more.
Glamour: Katherine, you were given the choice of playing Tully or Kate, so what drew you to Tully?
Katherine Heigl: It was a tough one. I spent a good week going back and forth, because I just felt like I understood Kate better. She felt more “me,” like I could psychologically dive into that character easier and maybe get there faster. But I had been talking to my mother, who is my producing partner, and my husband about wanting a real challenge in my next project. I was just coming off of Suits where I got to play this badass, strong, independent lawyer, and I wanted another challenge like that—a character that isn’t me. So I decided to just get brave and try playing Tully.
I’m glad you did.
Heigl: Thank you. There was nothing more fun than slipping into Tully’s skin. She’s so fierce and unapologetically ambitious in a way that, quite frankly, has been crapped upon in society. Women aren’t really encouraged to be that way. So I guess through my own brainwashing, I thought, She’s too much. I didn’t know how to embrace that. As I continued to pour through the book and the script and look at it more from Tully’s perspective, my heart grew for this character. My initial instinct was, I want to be the likable one; I want people to like me. I wasn’t sure I could pull Tully off in a way that you’d have sympathy for, that you would understand her, that you would still love her. Thankfully I had great material to draw upon, but it was scary.