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The Hilarious Way SNL Star Molly Shannon Used To Secure Acting Gigs

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Before landing “Saturday Night Live” in 1995, Molly Shannon had early supporting roles on “Ellen” and “In Living Color” and worked in restaurants (via New York Times). In an interview on The Howard Stern Show, Shannon explained how she and boyfriend Eugene Pack scammed talent agents to secure acting gigs.

“We called it the Mamet scam,” she explained, after acclaimed playwright David Mamet. Pack, now a producer and writer, had studied under Mamet and knew the playwright wasn’t overly involved in the ins and outs of Hollywood gossip. “We thought [of] it to get in the agents’ doors… We called each other pretending to be each other’s agents and we called every agent we wanted to meet.

Shannon’s character, Liz Stockwell, pretended to call from David Mamet’s office, which piqued the unsuspecting agent’s interest. Then she would sing the praises of a hot young talent in Mamet’s latest play. Pack would reciprocate with his character Arnold Katz. The pair would not end the phone call until they nailed an audition. “It was like, ‘Don’t hang up the phone until you have the date in the books.'”

Apparently, the scam worked well enough for Shannon to get a supporting role on Twin Peaks, but the ruse didn’t fool everyone. In particular, Molly Ringwald, icon of the 80s, saw through the scam. “We ran the Mamet scam on her and set up a meeting,” Shannon recalled in her memoir, Hello Molly (via The AV Club). “When I sat down for my appointment, she just stared at me and said, ‘I just wanted to see what a liar looks like in person.'”





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