‘The Bold Type’ star Melora Hardin dishes on directing debut
Melora Hardin, who stars as magazine editor Jacqueline Carlyle in “The Bold Type,” makes her debut behind the camera in Thursday’s episode.
Now in its fourth season (Thursdays at 9 p.m.), the Freeform drama follows staffers at fictional women’s magazine Scarlet — including Jaqueline, writer Jane Sloan (Katie Stevens, “Faking It”), social media director Kat Edison (Aisha Dee, “Sweet/Vicious”), and fashion stylist Sutton Brady-Hunter (Meghann Fahy, “Blue Bloods”).
“I’m also directing a feature-length documentary that I’ve been working on the last four years. So it’s not my first time directing [in general]. But it is my first time directing episodic television,” Hardin, 52, tells The Post.
Hardin has been in showbiz since the 1970s, and she says fans tend to approach her about a variety of roles.
“[I’m recognized most] for Jan from ‘The Office’, second to that would be Tammy from ‘Transparent’ or ‘The Bold Type,’ they run side by side,” she says. “And then there’s been the rare person who recognizes me from when I was Roxy in ‘Chicago’ on Broadway [in 2008] … I’ve been in the business for as long as I can remember. I started acting professionally when I was 6 years old.”
Her current role of Jaqueline Carlyle is partly based on former Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles, who’s an executive producer on the show.
“I’m not playing Joanna, I’m playing Jaqueline,” says Hardin. “But there are many things about Joanna’s personality that I do remember and think about when I’m making choices for Jaqueline. Sometimes I’ll even call Joanna and say, ‘How would you handle this?’ if I know there’s a certain storyline coming up. And just in my personal life, I’m playing the boss at Scarlet in ‘The Bold Type,’ and [Joanna Coles] actually is my boss — being that she is an exec producer on the show — and she also has become a friend. That’s an interesting and wonderful dynamic, too.”
‘There’s so much time pressure on episodic television. Everybody was like, ‘Are you stressed about the time?’’
Called “Snow Day,” Thursday’s episode sees Sutton struggling to balance her career with her relationship, Kat facing off with a new work rival, and Jane trying to imitate Jaqueline’s leadership style.
“It’s a wonderful episode,” Hardin says. “I think because I’ve been on the show for as long as I have and working on that set for as long as I have, I have a real knowledge of all the nooks and crannies of that space and of that world of Scarlet. There’s so much time pressure on episodic television. Everybody was like, ‘Are you stressed about the time?’ But when you’re working with people that you know as well as I know them and like as well as I like everybody — we have such a wonderful cast and crew in Montreal, where we film ‘The Bold Type.’ It was really quite fun.”
Further ahead in the season, Hardin teases a rocky road for Jaqueline’s relationship with her husband, Ian (Gildart Jackson, “Castlevania”).
“Jacqueline and Ian are having some challenges, but you’ll see them work through that. I felt that was really important that we get to see a loving marriage where they have lots of history and love and perspective that it takes to really face those [issues] and re-discover one another. So that’s what you’re going to see — how they as a couple start to prioritize their relationship and heal the places where they’ve become disconnected, and find the ways to reconnect.”
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