Elisabeth Moss’ ‘Girl, Interrupted’ Prosthetics Were So Good the Crew Thought She’d Been in an Accident

Elisabeth Moss fully committed to one of her earliest roles in Oscar-winning film “Girl, Interrupted.” So the the prosthetics team.

In her prosthetics, the future “Mad Men” star was so unrecognizable, even the film crew believed she was an actual burn victim, Moss said during the “Let’s Talk Off Camera with Kelly Ripa” podcast. In the 1999 film, a teenage Moss played Polly “Torch” Clark, a girl with schizophrenia who ended up with facial scars after getting caught in a fire.

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Moss’s facial prosthetics would take “about three hours every morning,” she said. Due to how long the process took, Moss would wear the prosthetics even when the cameras weren’t rolling.

“I would forget that I had [the prosthetics] on,” she said. “You wouldn’t take it off at lunch or anything. I would go with [co-star] Winona [Ryder], because we became kind of good friends, I would go with her to the store or something. People on set thought that that was actually what I looked like.”

She added, “I wasn’t famous. Nobody knew who I was. So the crew actually thought, unfortunately, that had really happened to me. It took a long time for them to realize it was not real. [The prosthetics team] did such a good job.”

“Girl, Interrupted” also starred Angelina Jolie, Clea DuVall, Jared Leto, and Brittany Murphy. Moss recalled there being two sides to the ensemble cast: one with Ryder’s team and the other with Jolie’s. She added that Ryder and Jolie were “so different” from one another.

“There were two camps. There was the Winona Ryder camp and the Angelina Jolie camp,” Moss said. “I was so intimidated by the Angelina Jolie camp. I had no thoughts of ever being able to be in that camp. It was so cool. It was all the cool girls.”

Moss, who currently stars in “The Veil,” is set to make her feature directorial debut with Paul Schrader’s “R.N.,” his first screenplay featuring a female protagonist. The film centers on a trauma nurse in Puerto Rico — that’s also Moss.

Screenwriter Schrader told IndieWire’s Anne Thompson that he felt out of place directing a feature with a female lead.

“I wanted to do a film about female sexual irresponsibility, mainly behavior that just causes trouble,” the Academy Award winner said. “I thought, ‘This is really good.’ But there was a lot of explicit sex in it, masturbation. I’m an old male. ‘How am I going to direct this?’ This is not my part of town. There are a lot of female directors out there now, not like decades ago, when there were only two or three. I feel out of place here, I feel like I’m in Spike Lee’s house telling him how to redecorate. And so I decided not to do it. And then I subsequently have now offered it to Elisabeth Moss for her to star and direct.”

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