Exclusive! Susan Sarandon Reinvents Her Life as a Movie Mom

Now on DVD, "Jeff, Who Lives at Home" shows it's never too late to jump-start our lives and build emotional bonds

by Susan Toepfer • More Features Editor/Entertainment
Susan Sarandon in Jeff, Who Lives at Home image
Water brings redemption to Sarandon and brood in "Jeff, Who Lives at Home."

More: I wasn’t sure if the two women were lesbians. That wasn’t clear to me.
SS: It was left ambiguous. But the idea of somebody seeing you and getting you—whether it’s sexual or not—that was what we were working toward.

More: Was this the first time you kissed a woman on screen? I thought maybe there was a scene in The Witches of Eastwick.
SS: No, that sex was all with Jack [Nicholson]. For a full on sex scene with a woman, check out The Hunger. Catherine Deneuve and I have a full on love scene there.

More: I first saw you onscreen in Joearound 1970. You were the kid on the set then. How is it different now, working with young actors and directors?
SS: I love that every movie has different people involved. Many younger directors have an advantage; the older ones tend to lose passion because the business is so brutal. The various obstacles of filmmaking wear people down. It’s heartbreak after heartbreak. But if you’re dealing with new directors, they’re having fun.                                                            

More: Do you also enjoy working with younger actors?
SS: I look at every actor as an opportunity to learn and to be more flexible and present. That’s the joy of it—to keep curious and fresh and to adjust. What you dread is to become a caricature of yourself by doing the same thing over and over. Luckily, I see myself as a character actress, so I welcome the chance to be someone else.

More: What else are you up to?
SS: I’m going to be doing a little piece of a movie that will be skyped; it’s conversations between mothers and daughters. I’m looking forward to bringing my sensibility to that, my sense of humor. I don’t like to do the same thing over and over.

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