Grace Gummer, Meryl Streep's Daughter, is Taking Over Television

Grace Gummer, Meryl Streep's Daughter, is Taking Over Television

She may be Meryl Streep's daughter, but Grace Gummer is carving an acting career all her own

She may be Meryl Streep's daughter, but Grace Gummer is carving an acting career all her own

Photography: Jeff Bark

Styling: Lana Jay Lackey

Text: Whitney Mallett

“I remember her being so funny and bossy,” recalls actress Grace Gummer about the late Nora Ephron. She’s giving life to the legendary writer on the small screen later this year as part of the new series Good Girls Revolt, a period piece about women in 1960s newsrooms. “She was so ahead of her time,” says Gummer of Ephron’s impatience with how women were credited for their journalistic work at the time.

Gummer is Meryl Streep’s daughter. Streep was good friends with Ephron—both are icons of the modern romantic comedy. Ephron, for example, wrote the screenplay for Heartburn (1986), which starred Streep opposite Jack Nicholson. Although Ephron worked in a number of other mediums, her film work in the ’80s and ’90s speaks to a certain era of medium-budget films that don’t really exist anymore. Gummer’s burgeoning career, however, is exemplary of the more recent changes that have wrought the industry, wherein TV has become the space for the sort of storytelling we used to expect from the cinema.

Jacket and pants Gucci Shirt Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane Earring Chrome Hearts Pin Stylist's Own Glove Max Mara

Gummer’s résumé thus far is a laundry list of high brow television experiments: Aaron Sorkin’s HBO show The Newsroom; the third and fourth seasons of FX’s American Horror Story (aka “Coven” and “Freak Show”); the Halle Berry drama, Extant; HBO’s Anita Hill movie, Confirmation; and now Good Girls Revolt, produced by Amazon, and the second season of the acclaimed Mr. Robot, initially released on multiple streaming platforms before USA Network picked it up.

Although the actress is usually blonde, she’s taken on copper tresses for the new Mr. Robot role, a New Jersey FBI agent named Dominique DiPierro. “There’s something about being a redhead that is very definitive,” says Gummer. The look does differentiate her from her famous blonde mother. But, she adds, “I’ve noticed that, walking down the street, people notice me more.”

After landing the role, Gummer met with real FBI agents for the purposes of research. “I went to their field offices downtown to visit their cyber crime division and met with these women,” she says. “They live these double lives, which is so much of what the show is about. I am still trying to wrap my head around it. You wouldn’t think they were agents. One of them has a bunch of tattoos and a nose ring. The craziest thing is that, underneath it all, they’re wearing their guns.”

Mr. Robot tells the story of a group of hacktivists who strive to erase debt by taking down the fictional E Corp. Gummer says that playing “Dom” is the hardest job she’s had so far, and that she’s up to the challenge. “I feel like

I’m telepathically reading her from [show creator Sam Esmail’s] mind. It’s cool.” The show, on the other hand, “speaks to everybody’s paranoia,” says Gummer. “More than any other show, it’s about what’s happening in the world right now—internet hacking, the one percent, and starting a revolution.”

Credits:

Makeup Lisa Houghton (Tim Howard Management)  Hair Shingo Shibata (The Wall Group)  Photo assistant Chris White and Michael Casker  Stylist assistant Kindall Almond  Makeup assistant Arisa Kawamura  Location Hudson Studios  Catering Guy & Gallard

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