An Interview with Constance Marie
Shes a champion of the underdog.
Ms. Marie on her character, Nina
What does your character, Nina, mean to you?
I like her a lot. I can identify with her because shes a thoroughly modern women in the sense that shes a career woman, she has her priorities. She has a little bit of a struggle between sort of old school traditional womens roles and what she wants her life to be. Her mothers very traditional, and I think she sort of rejects all that in order to accomplish everything. She got a scholarship to Stanford, shes very driven, and I can relate to that.
She does have a tendency to go the other way and exclude the softer side of things, and shes always fighting with her father, which is hysterical because hes so very much to the right, and shes very liberal to the left. Hes sort of like Mr. Rush Limbaugh, and Im the antithesis of that. So it makes for good conversations and good arguments.
Shes like a dog with a bone. Once she grabs a hold of something, shes not going to let it go. Very principled. She knows whats right and whats wrong, and in her life, it doesnt blend together. And shes a champion of the underdog, which is what I really, really like about her, and I kind of identify with her in that way. She sees that people need help, and thats what shes there for. The one line on her is that shes the self-appointed savior of the known universe, meaning shes very bossy, and my fiancÚ will tell you Im a little bit like that. Just a little bit.
Do you and Nina have anything else in common?
Well, Im a woman, and I think...I like to think that theres an inherent strength that we both have. I think thats pretty much it.
Why is American Family important to you?
Oh well, its important to me on so many levels. Its important because one, I think that a lot of the television shows that are on the air now are basically cookie-cutter shows, the same thing done over and over again, the formula, and it gets kind of boring.
And plus, theyve moved it around so fast its... you cant ever like appreciate anything. Two, its a show that is about Latinos. There are 35 million of us living in the United States, and we watch normal television. And so I think that a show that addresses the Latino community [is important]. But even more than that, its just about family, and it's quality and unique and cutting-edge. Thats why I think its very important.
What does family mean to you?
Family to me is foundation. Its the people that you can call on whether you love them or hate them. When push comes to shove, theyre there for you, and thats kind of how this family is.
Is anyone in the Gonzalez family like your family?
Well, some of the yelling is kind of like my family. My family was dubbed the loud family, but that was mostly because of my mother. My mothers actually Jess, but other than that, my familys not as big. But its great to have this extended family, to pretend that I have a big family. We have only two kids in my real family.