Actor, Voice Over and Stage Actor Rebecca Metz Talks Shameless, Better Things, Coop and Cami, Diversity & Much More! (EXCLUSIVE) Learn More Here--->>>
What a time we had chatting with actress (television, film, and commercials), and voice-over and stage actor, Rebecca Metz. We talked about all kinds of good stuff; Coop and Cami Ask the World, Better Things, Shameless, her plans for the future and more. Rebecca is a great conversationalist with a warm and engaging personality. Our kind of lady!
Rebecca is an only child from Freehold New Jersey, which is also the hometown of "The Boss", Bruce Springstein. She got started in acting by performing in school plays and community theaters. We all draw inspiration from someone or somewhere. One source of inspiration for Rebecca was right under her own roof, her parents. Her mom and dad were both artists themselves. They were both classical music singers. Rebecca's parents had full-time jobs and their pursuit of music was more of a hobby. Whereas, Rebecca wanted to pursue her craft full time. And it's no surprise that they were a bit concerned that "this acting thing" might not work out (parents are always concerned about their kids). But as great parents would; they were always super encouraging and supportive of Rebecca as she pursued her heart's desires.
Rebecca's other source of inspiration was specific and unique to her although they are known and loved by the masses, The Muppets! Yes! Kermit and Miss Piggy! "There is that show that grabs us when we are little kids. That show that set our brains in a certain direction. For me, it was the Muppet Show. The backstage stuff seemed like so much fun and there was something about it that I just related to. I was like those are my people. That's who I want to hang out with. That's what I want to do. I've stayed kind of obsessed with them. We have a whole bookshelf filled with Muppet paraphernalia."
As we said, Rebecca pursued her hearts' desires. And when we say pursued we mean just that. Listen. "In eighth grade I made my parents take me to the library. While I was there, I did this big project by myself on what the best acting schools were. I came home and announced, 'I am going to Carnegie Mellon!' Rebecca's always supportive and encouraging parents took the eighth-grader to visit Carnegie Mellon. Rebecca met the head of the School of Drama's Department. Right there she announced very "capriciously", "I'm coming here after I graduate high school! You should let me in because I'm going to show up anyway!"
It goes without saying that Rebecca was talented but she was also smart enough to know there was much to learn before she could make good on her promise to attend Carnegie. Luckily for her, in her high school district, there was a magnet arts program. The program was designed to give students the opportunity to focus on specialized programs. Rebecca was in the performing arts magnet program. This gave Rebecca the opening to learn more and to become even more deliberate in her pursuits.
Rebecca was a woman of her word and made good on her promise. She attended and graduated from Carnegie Mellon's School of Drama. She worked for eleven years as an executive assistant at Disney, doing social media and customer service while making a name for herself in the industry. "When I came to L.A. I did a lot of theater at first. It took a couple of years to figure out the lay of the land. I was also doing some television here and there. But when I got a role on Nip/Tuck that was the first time that it felt like things really shifted and people started noticing me." Rebecca also has had guest roles on numerous television shows including; Weeds, Boston Legal, Southland, Californication, The Mindy Project.
Rebecca landed her first series regular role in 2018 in Disney's hit show Coop and Cami Ask the World. Rebecca plays Coop and Cami's mom, Jenna, and is the only adult in the regular cast. This role is special to Rebecca for a variety of reasons. Rebecca's really good friend from high school is a single working mom with four kids. It means a lot to Rebecca for her and her kids to see a family like theirs on television. Absolutely. Families come in all different sizes, shapes, and colors. And everybody should be able to turn on shows and see a reflection of themselves.
It goes without saying what it meant to her personally since it was Rebecca's first series role. It was the culmination of all her years of hard work. And it was equally important to Rebecca how she landed the role. "I think it was a little bit of a departure for the Disney Channel. I was determined to do it in a way that felt authentic to me. I was determined not to be what I had in my head of what a Disney mom should be. And it turns out that that's what they wanted." Authencity and being true to one's self are life goals for us all.
We learned more about the premise of the show and Rebecca's character Jenna. "I'm a single working mom. In the pilot, we find out the dad passed away two years ago. It's me and my four kids. Two of the kids', Coop and Cami, have an online crowdsourcing show where they ask their audience questions about the decisions they're making or wacky situations that they're in. Every episode is kind of built around one of those. But we also spend a lot of time with the family. Jenna is a real estate agent. She has a dating life. We touch on her work life. And we get into what it's like to be a single working mom which is exciting for me."
You might recognize Rebecca from her recurring role as Melinda on Showtime's Shameless (2015-2016). We had a good laugh at Rebecca going from a show like Shameless to Coop and Cami Ask the World. "When this audition came up from the Disney Channel, I was like, 'They know I have been on Shameless right?'" Laughter." It was very different from the Disney Channel." Laughter. "John Wells and John Levey (both from Shameless) are huge supporters of Carnegie Mellon. I met them way back when I first graduated. Usually, it's just a matter of finding the right role for an actor. In season five of Shameless when Emmy Rossum's character, Fiona, was working in this diner, Patsy's Pies, they cast me as one of the regular waitresses in the diner. I was on Shameless for three seasons working with Emmy Rossum and doing everything that Shameless characters do." Oh Boy! LOL.
Currently, Rebecca has a recurring role on FX's comedy, Better Things now in its third season as Tressa. She plays a single mom there also. Tressa was the manager (up until this past season when she was fired) for Sam Fox, leading character, also a single mom, and an actress. Tressa and Sam are close friends, almost like family. One of the things Rebecca is looking forward to most next season is to see how Tressa and Sam's relationship evolves now that Tressa has been fired. Sam is played by Pamela Adlon. She is the shows' creator, showrunner, head writer, directed all of the episodes in seasons 2 and 3 and stars in the show. Rebecca calls her "amazing." Sounds like it!
Rebecca is proud of her diverse body of work. This led to our extensive discussion about the importance of diversity and representation in the entertainment industry. Rebecca believes there is a direct correlation between the recent elevation of quality in television and the dawn of the industry's movement toward full inclusion. She is happy to be a part of this, our golden age of television/streaming. "All of these streaming channels and all of these new ways of watching TV is attracting so many talented writers, producers, and directors. When I started in the business, TV was sort of the kid sister to the movies. The movies was the prestigious place to be. TV was considered a step-down but that's not true anymore. Everybody wants to be on TV. I think it's because now it offers creative freedom and now you don't necessarily have to be bound by the networks. You can be more flexible and cover an array of topics. It has created a really exciting place. We hadn't seen some people creating work from their own perspective. We are seeing it now. And when you look at the diversity numbers for women, people of color, in LGBTQ, yes we still have a long way to go, but it's much better. I hope it keeps going in that direction."
Rebecca is just as excited about the future in the other aspects of her acting career. "I would love to do more theater. It's just a matter of squeezing in a play in the off months between Coop and Cami Ask the World and Better Things and about finding the right project." She is featured in Disney's upcoming live-action film, Magic Camp. The film is about a group of kids that go to summer camp to learn magic. Rebecca plays one of the parents in the film. She wants to do more films. And Rebecca is starting to think about a career behind the camera; creating, writing, producing and directing.
Rebecca has been supporting herself full time as an actress since 2013. Her career is thriving and is in full stride. But if there is one thing she "regrets", if she could have one do-over; she would have gotten into the voice-over industry much earlier in her career. The expansive industry has so many opportunities; promos, animation, commercials, narration, audiobooks, and video games. Rebecca has dipped a toe or two in its vast sea of opportunity. She has done commercials and she was the voice-over for the Disney mobile game, Where is My Water? 2. "Honestly if I had a time machine voice over is the one thing I would get into earlier. It is so much fun. You can wear sweat pants to work. It is just a good gig. I feel like I should have figured that out sooner." Laughter.
Well, Rebecca from our vantage point it looks like you figured everything out right on time! You are indeed in full stride; television, film, theater, voice over and we know whatever you pursue behind the camera you will be just as successful!
Thank you so much for talking with us Rebecca! Let's chat again!
Make sure and watch Rebecca on Coop and Cami Ask the World and Better Things! And be on the lookout for the release of Magic Camp!
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