Uma Thurman is well-known as one of the cinema’s bad girls after her murderous rampage of vengeance in the Kill Bill series. Mary-Louise Parker lands somewhere in the middle of this spectrum for her most popular role as pot-slinging, gun-toting soccer-mom-turned-drug-lord Nancy Botwin in the Showtime series Weeds. But even though both actresses have taken a controversial role or two, it would be pretty hard to say Mary-Louise and Uma are interchangeable. Thurman is known for her hard Nordic features and stunning blond hair, while Parker has a soft, delicate visage and light brown curls.
That, however, hasn’t prevented Uma from replacing Mary-Louise for the United States version of popular Australian miniseries The Slap. Thurman will be playing Anouk, a 41-year-old soap opera writer. The series follows a suburban community after controversy breaks out when a stranger slaps a young boy who is misbehaving at a barbecue. In addition to Uma and Parker, the cast is set to include Peter Sarsgaard, Thandie Newton, Zachary Quinto, and Melissa George, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Though Uma will undoubtedly succeed in the role, Parker has reportedly stepped down because of an ongoing struggle with pneumonia — though that’s not to say the actress might not be fighting other demons. Last year, Mary-Louise told News Corp Australia that she was considering ending her acting career because of abuse from the online public.
“I’m not really that into it anymore. I don’t know how many more movies I wanna do. I wouldn’t mind doing a TV show again, I’d like to do a couple more plays, but I’m almost done acting, I think… The world has gotten too mean for me, it’s just too bitchy. All the websites and all the blogging and all the people giving their opinion and their hatred… it’s all so mean-spirited, it’s all so critical… It’s sport for people, it’s fun to get on at night and unleash their own self-loathing by attacking someone else who they think has a happier life – or something, I dunno.”
While Thurman is also a mother, Parker commented that her desire to leave the screen is in part inspired by wanting to remove her children from the spotlight that has caused her psychological damage. Mary-Louise went on to critique the exploitative reality TV structure at large.
“It’s a mean culture — it’s reality TV and it’s watching people suffer and watching people humiliate themselves. It’s little girls in pageants and housewives and plastic surgery and people in rehab. It just feels like a very ugly … it’s like someone just lifted up a rock and that’s all we’re looking at.”
Do you think Mary-Louise Parker has a point? How do you think Uma Thurman will fill her shoes in The Slap?
[Images via NBC, Stars Without Makeup]