Courteney Cox Says ‘Shining Vale’ Got Her ‘Excited About Acting Again’

Between “Friends” and the “Scream” franchise, Courteney Cox knew that playing both comedy and horror were well within her wheelhouse — but something told her that the new Starz series “Shining Vale” would test her skills in unprecedented ways.

“Such a dramatic role that also was comedic was a balance that I hadn’t played in quite this way,” Cox said at Monday’s series premiere at TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood, where she was joined by co-stars Greg Kinnear, Mira Sorvino, Judith Light and Rob Morrow, as well as a familiar face from her TV past, Lisa Kudrow. “It’s a part that I’m just not used to being able to challenge, and it got me really excited about acting again.”

“Shining Vale” was conceived by co-creators Sharon Horgan (”Catastrophe”) and former “Friends” writer Jeff Astrof as a comedic riff on “The Shining.” Cox plays Pat, a “lady porn” novelist struggling with writers’ block and depression who, after cheating on her husband (Kinnear), seeks a fresh start by moving her dysfunctional family into a new home with an increasingly unsettling vibes – and some unexpected ethereal occupants, like Sorvino’s perfectly put-together 50s-era spirit.

Astrof said he immediately fell for the concept floated by Horgan. “Sharon said, ‘I want to do something really scary. Do you think you can do horror and comedy together?’ And I said yes, because every time you go to a horror movie, after you scream, you laugh,” Astrof said. “I’ve been doing this long enough [that] I’m always looking for fresh ways to tell jokes.”

And Horgan, he said, pushed him far out of the comfort zone of familiar sitcom rhythms as they collaborated from different continents. “When she’s speaking in person, you get the Irish brogue and it’s beautiful, it’s lilting and it’s poetic and you’re like, ‘You’re right,’” he laughed. “But when she just writes in the long email, ‘Are you really doing this? It’s sitcom crap. Are you really doing a callback?’ I’m like, ‘My house is built on callbacks!’ Sharon didn’t write that much, but every one of her notes made me a better writer.”

(Excerpt) Read more in: Variety

Courteney Cox Says ‘Shining Vale’ Got Her ‘Excited About Acting Again’

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