8 Questions With...Jodie Sweetin

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Photo Source: Glenn Nutley

Tell us what it’s been like working on Netflix’s “Fuller House.”
It’s been amazing. It’s been an opportunity to do what I love again with a group of people who are like my family.

On whom do you have an acting crush?
Kevin Spacey. So much. I just adore him. There’s not been anything that I’ve ever seen him do that I didn’t completely, absolutely, 100 percent believe that he was that person. I’m completely captivated when I watch him. He really pulls you in and you just enjoy watching him, even in something really dark. I just watched “Seven” the other day—it’s just so dark and so good. Or “House of Cards,” where he’s this multilayered character. You love him but hate him, want to see him do well but he’s so horrible! He brings the humanity. I met him at a party once and he’s the only person I totally fangirled over.

How do you typically prepare for an audition?
I read over the script until I absolutely know it. I don’t necessarily go in and try to be off-book, but I want to know it so I can play. Auditions are an opportunity to play and go in there and bring the character to life. The writers have it stuck in their head and haven’t seen it jump off the page. Even if I don’t have the whole script, I like to think about what happened before—even if I don’t really know. It helps ground me in a scene.

What was your most memorable survival job?
The past few years, I was working in a drug and alcohol treatment center. I wouldn’t call it a survival job; it wasn’t just to pay the bills, I love it. It was the interim to doing “Fuller House” and getting to do my original passion. [Treatment] was an interesting world. It’s a bit of a circus because you’re dealing with people who are new in recovery, and people who work there are as crazy as the clients sometimes! Every day you’re, like, I can’t believe I’m having this conversation about what is and isn’t appropriate at work! It would make for a great story, working there for four years.

What do you wish you’d known before you started acting?
I was, like, 3-and-a-half years old [when I started acting]! But as a child actor who got older, I guess I wish I’d had the self-confidence to realize that just because something doesn’t work out or you don’t get a part, it’s not a reflection of who you are. I had to learn that growing up in the business: You didn’t do a bad job, you just weren’t right.

What is your worst audition story?
I remember going in on auditions when I was little and I used to be so excited. I remember being second to last to go in and I was getting ready and they came out and said, “It’s fine. We’re done for the day.” I guess whoever had gone in right before me did so well that they didn’t need to see anyone else. It was a heartbreaking moment. And I had been waiting there for so long!

In the alternate universe in which you aren’t an actor, what would you be doing?
I probably would’ve gone back to school to become a marriage and family therapist. I love working with families and working with people. My history working in drug and alcohol treatment really gave me the opportunity to work with people [closely]—obviously not as a therapist, but I think it would’ve been something I would’ve pursued and gone back to school for had I not pursued my acting career again.

Which of your performances has left a lasting mark on you?
Most obvious would be Stephanie and “Full House.” That’s what I’m most known for and the character that I’ve carried around with me and had the most influence on. There’s a lot of me in Stephanie. I got to shape and mold her and create her backstory to when we went off 20 years ago and then to now. She’s definitely the most impactful.

It’s great because I’m getting to work with the writers and the creators of the show. They had an idea of where she’s gone and what she’s been doing, and I’ve gotten to fill in the rest about why she’s done certain things and gone to where she’s gone to, and it gets revealed in the show. It’s fun as an adult actor to come back and create that rich history as opposed to when you’re a kid on a sitcom. Plus, it’s great to bring this show that’s so beloved back.

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Briana Rodriguez
Briana is the Editor-in-Chief at Backstage. She oversees editorial operations and covers all things film and television. She's interested in stories about the creative process as experienced by women, people of color, and other marginalized communities. You can find her on Twitter @brirodriguez and on Instagram @thebrianarodriguez
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