Quotes by Zoe Kazan

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My schedule is completely different doing a play than it is doing a movie, and I actually think it's a much harder schedule because you've got to do it eight times a week and you've got to do it good eight times a week and with different kinds of audiences who are cold or drunk or tired, whatever it is. more...

I don't like pretentious films or pretentious people. more...

Nothing's going to come to you by sitting around and waiting for it. more...

People really do make the assumption that I had some weirdo Hollywood upbringing, but my parents are incredibly down-to-earth people who worked really hard to raise us in a way that was health. more...

Well, I have a sister that I'm very close with, and that relationship is probably the most intense relationship of my life to date, probably of my life, period. more...

And when I get bored, it's like the worst parts of me come out. I really veer to self-destructive tendencies quickly. more...

Sometimes I feel that the people I'm writing are more real to me than the people around me. When you take that imaginative leap, you're living so much in that world. more...

I'm klutzy, and I don't embarrass easily. more...

Anytime that I've felt uninspired, I don't force myself to sit down and write. I only do it when I feel the impulse. more...

I don't have a lot of patience for boring arthouse movies. more...

I find playwriting really painful. I love it, or I wouldn't do it, but I don't love the theater as much as I love movies. more...

I hate going to bed. I read scripts, clean, listen to the radio - I've fallen asleep to 'This American Life' more times than I can count! more...

I really love people. I love to meet people. I'm curious about people. more...

When I'm writing, I look like a fool because the parts are moving through me and I'm crying and laughing and making faces. more...

I find playwriting to be incredibly difficult compared to screenwriting. Part of it is that I grew up watching movies and not watching plays. more...

I think film writing, you're thinking in pictures, and stage writing, you're thinking in dialogue. In film writing, it's also, you only get so many words, so everything has to earn its place in a really economical way. I think for stage writing, you have more leeway. more...

I always wrote. My parents are writers. It just seemed like something people did. more...

I have mad luck. I'm super-good at games like backgammon or anything that requires rolling dice. more...

I never wanted to be a playwright. more...

I think action should be revealed through character, so if you have a plot problem, it's probably a character problem. more...

I think most actors jump at the chance to do something where the camera's on them all the time. more...

I took a writing class in college, liked it, and my first year out of school I couldn't get a job, so I wrote a play. more...

I'm used to very low-budget situations. In 'The Exploding Girl,' we were literally changing in Starbucks because we didn't have trailers. more...

If I ever feel that acting is just soul-sucking and I don't want to do it anymore, I could stop. more...

If I'm not working, I don't feel complete. more...

In New York you can just walk out and be among people. You're on the subway among people, you go to cafes, you can talk to people. more...

My hero is Michelle Williams, who I grew close to when we did 'Meek's Cutoff.' She's an extraordinary actor and mom. more...

You set up the story, but the characters start talking, and they go places that you didn't expect. You have to follow. more...

And I think the female creative urge is intrinsically biologically linked to our ability to give birth to a child, even if we've never... I've never given birth, but I feel like it's part of our psychology. more...

And then the really awful thing is that at the end of the day after crying and experiencing things, then you look at what you've written and you're like, 'Hmm, there's half a page that's good here.' Then you throw out everything else. more...

But my family's really close and I was interested in what Mommy and Daddy did for a living. So when Mommy and Daddy had a script that wasn't totally age inappropriate, they would let me read it. And we would talk about it. more...

I grew up in L.A., and I don't think I've seen L.A. onscreen in a way that felt real to me. There are definitely movies, but they are few and far between. more...

I love bad movies, whereas going to the theater for me is a painful experience. I think it's really hard to sit and watch actors do something live and have it not go well. more...

I love to walk around New York. Honestly, that's like the best thing, to walk over to Park Slope and go visit my friend Betty and take her dog out in the park or go walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. I really dig being outside and getting to see everybody in the street. more...

I read a lot of plays as a kid, but I didn't see that many plays, so I feel better-versed in film history and film structure. I just think it's easier to think in pictures. more...

I think movies have much more magic than the theater. Theater can be a magical experience, but movies thrust their subjectivity on you in a more profound way. more...

I've always really been interested in the Pygmalion myth and both what it has to say about creativity and what it has to say about relationships between men and women. more...

When I look back, I can say that the summer when I was 19 was a formative time for me. But at the time I just thought I was making tofu every night for dinner and going to work. more...

Writing-wise, I like to have a lot of things on the burners at once, because when I hit a wall, I like to move on to the thing I haven't hit a wall on. more...

I think the written word is my first love. I was just a very imagination - centered child and a big part of that imaginary life came from reading. more...

It's fun for me to be with someone who loves reading as much as I do, because he'll give me things to read that I wouldn't normally seek out, and I think vice versa. more...

I love to act and that's sort of my first love. That's what I started out doing. more...

I was really surprised when I started working and realized that you're actually on your own, a lot of the time. It makes you really responsible, as an actor. more...

I think, a lot of times, directors assume that whatever they get from you the first time, whether it be at an audition or on set, is all that you can bring. more...

When you're in the editing room, as a director, you get the opportunity to look at your work. As a writer, you can rewrite. But as an actor, unless you're watching playback, you really rely on the director to help you. more...

I'm always disappointed after an audition when I don't get a part and I hear, "Oh, she was too X, or too Y," and it's too much of a quality. more...

I've definitely gotten to work with female directors, and I feel lucky because of that. I just feel like more voices should be represented. more...

So often you're asked to play impossibly perfect version of yourself on screen that it's nice to get to bring in those parts that you think aren't as worth looking at. more...

There aren't a lot of movies being made about women, period. Most of the time, the roles that are available are the sidekick, the friend, the girlfriend or the wife, and they just aren't that interesting. more...

I feel lucky to receive such critical attention and praise when you're in a show that's going to last a month, it's just easier when audiences are more receptive. I've done two new shows this year, so I'm always excited to work on something a little older, traditional and structured. more...

Part of the challenge of being a girl living in the 21st Century, looking back, the danger is to not judge your character by your own standards. more...

My grandmother told me: "We all dated lots of different boys because no one was having sex or kissing. It was just going out for sodas and getting to know people. It didn't seem like there was a threat." I think now we have more ideas of people having premarital and unprotected sex. more...

When we do something we're not proud of, a lot of people don't want to look at that, people may say "what people don't know won't hurt them." more...

Half the fun is getting to play dress-up and imagine what it's like to be this other person. If you're not excited about a part where you get to use your imagination, then what's the point in doing it? It'll be just another job. Also, Director Michael Pressman and I see eye-to-eye with Marie. more...

We all have our essential nature. If you're good with numbers, you don't even know you're good with numbers because that's how your mind works. more...

I think from my earliest childhood, I liked to tell stories, put on plays and write things. It's funny to think of it as an "artistic bug" because I didn't necessarily want to be an artist. It's just who I was and how I communicate. more...

Too often in the theatre people can't wait for intermission to get some chocolate or something. But with Come Back, Little Sheba I just hope people leave feeling like they've spent a really good two-hours in that house with us. more...

There are a lot of words that I knew first as a reader, and I never put the pieces together in my brain. The word segue I thought was pronounced "seeg," I think until I went to college, which is horribly embarrassing. more...

I stopped Googling myself a long time ago. I'm sure there's plenty of misinformation out there, but I am blissfully unaware of it. more...

I was a vegetarian for a really long time, from 7 to 23, so I feel like some things aren't that weird but they seem weird to me, like blood sausage or snails. Those are things I've eaten now that, years ago, it would have been totally improbable that I would have eaten. more...

I'm pretty sure I ate ants in Mexico. more...

On a personal level, just for me in my own work, I would say the most interesting thing has been getting to work with the people that I've worked with. more...

I've gotten incredibly lucky with the people I've gotten to work with. It's made my mind better, and it's made me a better person. more...

I would not wear any clothes that had a brand name on them, and I only read books that were canonical. more...

I wouldn't wear makeup, and I didn't like to let boys open the door for me because I felt like it was sexist. more...

I would not wear any clothes that had a brand name on them, and I only read books that were canonical. I wouldn't wear makeup, and I didn't like to let boys open the door for me because I felt like it was sexist. My heart was in the right place, but I was such a tiny dictator about it. It's embarrassing to me now because I was so rigid. It's such a rigid way of looking at the world. There's something very young about that mind-set. more...

I am proud and embarrassed by how incredibly self-confident I was in my late teens and early 20s. I know that there were other things going on, too, but I had an overwhelming belief in myself. Like I said, I'm embarrassed by it and proud of it. more...

It's a good thing I learned some humility and perspective as I got older. more...

I had a real feeling of being fated to be an actor and do my work, and I remember so much speaking up in a room full of people who authentically knew as much or more than me, and feeling like I was absolutely equal, and what I had to say was important. more...

There's part of me that's grateful for the delusion, because it takes a very hard shell to get started as an actor, and I don't have a very hard shell. more...

What I did have was an incredible amount of belief in myself. more...

When I would get close on a part but wouldn't get it, I would be like, "They made a mistake," which is not how I think about things now. I both admire it and I'm grateful for the modicum of health, knowledge, and humility that I have acquired over the last 10 or 15 years. more...

I've never stolen anything. Well, that's not entirely true. I once accidentally took a gift card from a store in a mall. I was carrying it around to show my mom because I thought it was funny, and I forgot to show it to her and left the store carrying it. I had a complete nervous breakdown, like, 20 minutes later and went back to the store in tears. So that's where I stand in terms of my ability to steal something. more...

I've worked with a lot of really famous people. It stops being weird really quickly. For me, at least. more...

I grew up with my grandfather [Elia Kazan] being famous in a way that's not like Beyonce, but famous in a relative way. It made me feel weird about the way that we treat people that are famous, and it made me feel weird about fame in general. more...

I don't feel like I have a super straightforward relationship with the idea of fame. It makes me sort of level things out in my own brain almost immediately when I meet someone. more...

I quite enjoy a high-waisted cotton panty. more...

I guess I always like being asked questions about influence or inspiration, like, "What are you reading? Who are your heroes? Is there any one person you want to shout out to now?" I really love paying it forward with love and attention, because that's what I like to read. more...

I'm definitely feeling whatever's going on pretty hard. It's like playing Barbies. You're holding the Barbies, but all of the action is happening inside of your head. You might be holding them or even speaking out loud, but really, all of the animation is internal. That's sort of how I feel about my writing. And then the really awful thing is that at the end of the day after crying and experiencing things, then you look at what you've written and you're like, "Hmm, there's half a page that's good here." Then you throw out everything else. more...

I am very much in the instant-gratification camp. I am too much of an actor not to be. I am used to doing my work and having someone comment immediately. So I think that I'm a little hooked on that gratification structure. more...

I have a sister that I'm very close with, and that relationship is probably the most intense relationship of my life to date, probably of my life, period. I think that when you're close with a sibling, especially a sister, it's a relationship unlike any other. more...

I grew up in LA, and I don't think I've seen LA onscreen in a way that felt real to me. There are definitely movies, but they are few and far between. I wanted to see a movie that was set in LA that wasn't about the film industry. LA is such a lonely place to be alone. In New York you can just walk out and be among people. You're on the subway among people, you go to cafes, you can talk to people. In LA, no one talks to each other, you're in your house, you're in your car, even when you take walks there's no one on the street. more...

I think a large part of an actor's job in preparation is just making the words feel organic to them, and obviously they came out of me, so they felt organic to me already. And then I think then it was all about clearing away all the other voices. more...

I think for acting on stage and in film, one informs the other. Obviously, they require really different kinds of discipline and really different kinds of work. It's more along the same continuum, for me. more...

I've always really been interested in the Pygmalion myth and both what it has to say about creativity and what it has to say about relationships between men and women. I'd been thinking about what I would want to do with that if I was going to write on that theme, and one morning I woke up and Calvin and Ruby Sparks were in my head. more...

I think even probably the people we look up to the most, and think are on the Mount Olympus of actors - they're still experiencing nervousness. more...

I do not do my own taxes. It's too many forms. "Here are my 70,000 forms. I have no idea."I would be in jail. more...

Most adults get to a point in their careers where they feel secure, where they have a body of work behind them that will ensure longevity, and for actors, it's just not like that. You're basically always a temp, going from job to job. more...

When my sister decided that she wanted to act, I was so nervous for her. She's doing great, but I have a lot of friends at every level of success as an actor, and we all go through periods of time where they feel like their worth isn't within their own control. That's a horrible feeling for an adult to have. more...

I was 14, when I wanted to be an actor. My parents were basically like, "This is a very hard life, and you have to be really serious about it, and show us that you're serious about it. You can't drop out of school." They strongly encouraged me not to act professionally until I finished college, which I didn't. And I think they should have been horrified! It's a really hard life. I'd be really scared if I had a child who wanted to be an actor. more...

I will say they were horrified when I wanted to be an actor. It wasn't a showbiz-y family, and my parents are real introverts who don't go to a lot of Hollywood parties and are most comfortable in their pajamas in our sweet little home. Part of the reason I wanted to be an actor and not just a writer is because I felt much more extroverted than that - I love to be around people, and feed off people's energy, and collaborations. If I hadn't had their example, I wouldn't have been so serious, but I also wouldn't have wanted so much to find another creative outlet. more...

If I was born into a household with anxiety about money, I wouldn't have had as much freedom to be in my own world. So it's impossible for me to divorce the privilege of my childhood from the other things. more...

There are people a lot smarter than me investigating nature versus nurture who would have a lot to say about that, but I think it's an enormous privilege to be born into a family where my parents had enough time to read to me and listen to my stories and foster my imagination. It's a privilege to have time to investigate your imagination. And not to have, like, an amount of stress on you as a kid that prevents you from maturing creatively. more...

In a way, you normalize your own childhood to yourself, so I never thought about how much I wrote as a kid. So I was there, confronted with it - so many notebooks, so many tiny plays. Every week we put on a play. We had a big futon, so my sister and I would use the futon as our stage, and I wrote little skits and made her faint because I found it so funny. more...

I just went through my childhood attic with my sister. I'm not an expert, and I don't mean to put myself in that category, but thinking about Malcolm Gladwell and the 10,000 hours, I was like, Here are my 10,000 hours! more...

Every piece of writing I've done has been something where I feel like I need to get this out of me, whether it's a seed of something personal or an anxiety that turns into a play or an image that's in my mind and haunts me that I'm trying to investigate. more...

Lena Dunham or Miranda July, those people are sort of thinking about their work in a slightly different way than I do, where their whole body is a seed of what they're creating. I can't imagine watching Miranda's movies with anybody else playing her role, she's so integral. But for me, it feels more like every story is really individual. If I thought of something else, or thought it should be my body representing it, I'd fold my body into it. But most of the time I'm writing to get something out of my body. more...

I'm not that interested in writing for myself. That's not where my impetus as a writer comes from. more...

A lot of what I've had produced are plays, and I just don't want to do that. It's different than a movie, where you only have to act the scenes the one time, and you have other collaborators helping you make it better, so you don't feel as obsessed with your own mind. Plays you have to do every single night, and the thought of that is agony to me. There are days when you hate your own work, and you don't want to be confronted with that, have it coming out of your mouth or listening to somebody else say it to you. There are days you want to leave the theater and get a drink. more...

I have a lot more writing experience than Paul Dano has, so to be able to put that experience to use in exercising his vision was almost an acting exercise: How would I write if I were Paul? When I look at it, it feels so completely his, but it's also mine. more...

Wildlife was the only thing we've written together with Paul Dano. It's based on a book by this author Richard Ford, who just published a memoir about his family that's really wonderful. Paul fell in love with his book, and we optioned it ourselves, and he took a first pass at writing it. He asked me for notes, and then our note session devolved into an argument really quickly. more...

I just don't care that much about how famous I am. I care a lot about our world, and whether our planet will survive. It seems really low-stakes how many Twitter followers I have, in the grand scheme of things. In 80 years, who will care? more...

Most of the things I'm talking about are essential human rights. I don't think it should be political to say that children should be able to have lunch at school when their families can't afford to feed them properly, or to say women should have access to basic health care, or that Muslims deserve equal protection under the law, or police shouldn't be killing black people and getting away with it - it shouldn't be a political thing to say. A lot of people on the right standing behind Christian values should be standing with us, because equality is a basic tenet of Christianity. more...

I don't feel like it's a time to be shy about raising my voice, and I don't think that the things I'm raising my voice about should be alienating. If it's alienating to a "fan base," then I'm not responsible for that. more...

I think everyone is always asking themselves, How is my work meaningful, how is my life meaningful? As I get older, I feel like who I am as a person and a citizen is more important than who I am in my work. But I do think it reframed slightly for me, how much I have to care about a project in order to want to do it. Sometimes, obviously, you have a take a job for money. But I think I'm quicker now when I get a script that's, say, borderline misogynist, I'm not going to go in for it. I'm thinking more about what I'm putting into the world. more...

I don't feel like I possess a particular political intelligence, and when I read work that does, I feel like somebody else is going to have the right political thing to say. As a citizen, I feel an enormous need to respond, and immediately post-election, I felt like, What is my work worth? Should I quit what I'm doing and go work on the 2018 election now? How is what I'm putting into the world meaningful? more...

I feel like a lot of my work on stage, I've gotten to play a wider range of characters than I have on film. This feels closer to who I am than stuff I've played on stage, or, like, Olive Kitteridge. more...

I don't think a lot of people are like, "I'm just quirky!" Or if they are, it's a stage they're going through as they figure out who they are. I never felt like I was choosing roles that were quirky. more...

I don't love the word "quirky." I think it's a word that's a catchall. It's a word that doesn't stand in empathy with the person, it stands in judgment of them. It's a very externalized word. more...

You know, it only happens a handful of times in your career, where you walk out of an audition feeling like all the stars aligned, my preparation paid off, something magical happened in the room. I've gotten really lucky and I've gotten to work a lot, and I would say it's only happened, like, two or three times, where I've walked out and been like, This was the right thing and the right choice and they should just cast me. more...


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