The Last Thing He Told Me — Official Trailer | Apple TV+

AVC: One of the things that struck me is how commendably restrained your performance is because Hannah is struggling to keep her emotions in check for Bailey’s sake, for the most part. How did you land on evoking that aspect?


JG: I did want to [evoke that], but I have to give credit where credit is due. I was so emotional shooting these scenes. Josh helped me out by constantly reminding me to, first of all, keep my act together. My favorite thing is to be full emotionally and then find a take where you have to hold it all in, but you must first go all the way there [emotionally] to find that take believably. We danced that dance the whole show, and I had such a partner in Josh.

AVC: You took over Hannah’s role after Julia Roberts was supposed to star in it initially. Was there any apprehension? Or were you just excited to explore Hannah as a character?


JG: If Julia Roberts wants to star in something, you can’t wait for it, and don’t question it. So it was not until she stepped out due to scheduling problems that I even let myself dream. I was already such a huge fan of the book, so I campaigned pretty hard for this role. I stayed up late and wrote letters about it to spell out, “This is what I see. This is what the role distills down to for me. I’m not like Hannah in so many ways, but here are the core ways in which I am.”

I was nervous not because of taking over Julia Roberts—that’s something you can’t even think about—but because the book is so beloved. The fans are rabid, and I am one of them. So I wanted all of us to be satisfied with the end result. That remains to be seen because the fans will have to let us know how we did.


AVC: How much did you connect with Hannah on a personal level, and how much of her was based on the book and script?

JG: I’m not like Hannah in a lot of ways. She’s more still and restrained than I am in every way, even down to her vocal register, which is much lower than mine. I worked with a vocal coach before and during production to achieve this. Lucky for me, Hannah’s career is turning wood. I learned to turn wood with my coach, Aaron Hauser, and we worked on it for months. It was such a pleasure. It was in the stillness, the concentrated act of working with the lathe, gouge, and block of wood, that I learned to be calmer and quieter. It’s all about shaping something. You don’t know what it’s going to look like. You can’t even envision it, but it becomes what it’s meant to be, and it surprises you in the process of becoming. That’s such an apt metaphor for this process for me [as an actor] and for then for Hannah’s life in general.


AVC: Have you talked about whether TLTHTM will get a second season even though it ends in the same way the book does?

JG: Believe me, Angourie Rice and I are desperate to work together again. We so badly want more of Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s Owen too. He wasn’t with us every day, but his presence loomed over the production in a way that pulled us through the story. And even with Angourie, I can’t think of another role I’ve had that has centered so much on another performer for such a long period of time. I could not be more grateful for what she taught me during this time. So we’d want to do it again. But nothing is in talks right now. Laura would have to write something again, but I personally think it’s a great idea.

Party Down | Official Trailer | STARZ

AVC: I want to ask you about Party Down again and what it was like for you to be on that set, because it’s also a reunion for the other cast members after 13 years.


JG: I loved getting to watch them be together again. They were like a big pile of kids, they were clearly so happy to be together again. And you couldn’t find a group of people who are more likely to say, “Come on, come sit with us.” I had Zoë Chao and Tyrel Jackson Williams as the fellow new kids to hang out with as well, so that was cool.

AVC: Would you want to do more comedic roles like Party Down and Evie?

JG: If I’m with a group like that and Ken Marino is directing me, then sign me up. My favorite episode of Party Down to film is the one he directed, the one where Evie, Henry, and everyone gets high [season three, episode four, “KSGY-95 Prizewinner’s Luau”]. All these people that have worked in comedy forever have different skill sets. They understand and hear a rhythm that I need a little help with, and Ken was such a great teacher. It did make me want to do more of that kind of comedy.


I do have another film I worked on; I guess did have a big year of work. I produced and developed another family film for Netflix called Family Leave, directed by McG. It’s a big fat body switch movie with Emma Myers, Ed Helms, Brady Noon, and Rita Moreno. We could not [laughs] ... it’s so ridiculous. So it’s been the perfect flip of the coin for me.