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ByLia Fairchild/July 25, 2022 7:57 pm EST
Rhea Seehorn, best known for playing attorney/con artist Kim Wexler on AMC's hit show "Better Call Saul," has been in the acting world longer than you think. Beginning in the late '90s to early 2000s, Seehorn graced both screen and stage as she pursued her acting career, appearing in plays like "Much Ado About Nothing" and "Stop Kiss" as well as a guest spot on the television drama "Homicide: Life on the Street." She also popped up in a handful of televisionmoviesand big screen movies before landing her first regular role on "I'm With Her" in 2003, changing the trajectory of her career.
Rhea, which is actually Seehorn's middle name, is pronounced like "Ray." Her given first name is Deborah, but the actor toldRolling Stone she felt disassociated to that name and changed it. She explained, "the Deborahs and Debbies that I knew or saw on TV always seemed to be really attractive cheerleaders, and it was not my lane at all in school." As far as the spelling goes, Seehorn shared onTwitter, "I know it's a slightly weird spelling. But mom liked it & im sticking w/ it." For more untold truths about Rhea Seehorn, keep reading.
Her parents inspired her to be an actor
Growing up in a military family, Rhea Seehorn moved a lot, sometimes lived on military bases, and even once relocated to Japan. Seehorn told The Wall Street Journal she learned to adapt rather quickly, sharing, "I loved exploring new places and getting to see new things." After the family moved to Virginia Beach and before Seehorn reached her teens, her parents split up, and she moved away with her mother and sister, though they stayed near their dad.
Seehorn gives credit to both parents for her drive and determination to go after what she wanted. She recalled her father, who died while she was in college, would talk about being disappointed he didn't take big swings such as getting a boat. "I never wanted to feel that way," she told the publication. Sharing how her mother influenced her, Seehorn said, "Part of my drive came from watching my mother reinvent herself after the divorce."
Seehorn would go through a bit of a reinvention while studying atGeorge Mason University. As she recalled to The New York Times, signing up for a drama class to fulfill an elective credit requirement piqued her interest and pretty much changed the course of her life.She told the outlet, "I think ignorance was bliss. Because it seemed very simple to me at the time in a way that I understand now that it's not."
She idolized Bea Arthur
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Today, most people know Bea Arthur as the tall and snarky Dorothy on the hit TV show "Golden Girls."But two decades before that show ended in 1992, Arthur starred in another show, "Maude." In 1972, the series premiered. That same year, Rhea Seehorn was born.
In a 2020 interview withRolling Stone, Seehorn remembered watching Arthur play strong, liberal, outspoken female characters as a kid — and those performances resonated with her.Of course, Seehorn didn't know at the time she'd eventually get into acting, let alone take on roles with similar characteristics. "I got typecast as something that I was very proud of, which was this very wry, sarcastic, knowing [woman]," Seehorn told the magazine, citing the role of Cheri on "I'm With Her" as one of the earliest examples. In a separate interview withCollider, she shared that the character she played on "Whitney" also pulled from Bea Arthur.
She made Kim Wexler who she is
The character of Kim Wexler has been on "Better Call Saul," a prequel spin-off to "Breaking Bad," since day one, but Kim, the colleague and wife of Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) did not appear in the original series. And when "Saul" was in the works,showrunners Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould did not have much of a set plan for Kim at first."We had a vague inkling that we wanted a female character who was perhaps a love interest past tense, or potential love interest future tense," Gilligan said inVulture.
Which left some creative license for Rhea Seehorn to drive and develop the character, something she came through on with flying colors — and the praise has yet to stop rolling in. AsRolling Stonestated in 2020, "Kim has gone from afterthought to one of the most beloved characters on either 'Better Call Saul' or 'Breaking Bad.'" In that same feature,co-creator Peter Gould said, "[Seehorn] just brings so much depth, and there's so much thought and so much intelligence to every moment that she plays." Gennifer Hutchison, a "Breaking Bad" alum who is also a writer on "Saul," told Rolling Stone that early on, Seehorn came up with backstories to use as her motivation in certain scenes since there weren't any at the time.
At some point, the writers and the actor found a beautiful balance of evolution. In 2022 Seehorn toldVariety, "It's not like I am trying to find more layers and more complexity. They keep giving me more layers and more complexity."
Rhea Seehorn is married a former film producer
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One look at Rhea Seehorn's Instagram, and you'll find that she's a pretty private person. Same with her Twitter profile. If you scan through her socials, her postings there are shots she's taken with the "Better Call Saul" crew on the set, a few images promoting her 2022 series "Cooper's Bar," and a scarce few pics of her husband, Graham Larson, to whom she married sometime in 2018. Those that are there of Larson show a particularly lovely couple who look very happy together.
So, who is he? As Larson plainly states in his Instagram bio, he works in real estate. But that's not all there is to the man. A former producer, he worked on films, "Balls Out: Gary the Tennis Coach," "Cougars, Inc.," and Oscar nominated "The Last Samurai" starring Tom Cruise. He also has one acting credit listed: 1998's "The Siege," starring Denzel Washington. Larson played an FBI agent.
Larson has two sons from a previous marriage, which brought two new stepsons into Seehorn's life. In February of 2020, she posted anInstagram pic of the boys, calling them her other Valentines.
Rhea Seehorn say Veep was the 'best of the best'
Fans of "Better Call Saul" got a little scare in 2019 when AMC announced it wouldn't be airing the fifth season that year. In a chat with Vulture, Sarah Barnett, the Head of AMC, cited "talent concerns" for the delay. But while viewers held their breath, Seehorn put her head down and got to work, making 2019 an exceptionally busy year for the actor.
Let's start withstarring in the movie "Inside Man: Most Wanted," in which she played a hostage negotiator. She also appeared in the TV series "The Twilight Zone," as well as miniseries "The Act." Probably the most memorable 2019 credit Seehorn scored was appearing on the Emmy-winning show "Veep," starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus. For five episodes, she played Michelle York, White House Chief of Staff, which put her in a precarious position between President Selina Meyer and Tom James (Hugh Laurie).
In a 2022 chat withMetacritic, Seehorn only had glowing things to say about "Veep." "It was the best of the best in comedy," she raved. Seehorn expressed how much she enjoyed just watching the inner workings and how funny they were even behind the scenes, and she also shared what it was like being there in the final days of the show and how she worried about getting in the way. "I was just like, I cannot believe that I'm getting to be a part of their final season, and now their final episode, and now their final scene," Seehorn said.
Rhea Seehorn hasn't lost her love of art
Acting wasn't Rhea Seehorn's first love. It was another art form that gained her interest early on. Following her family's footsteps — specifically her father and paternal grandmother — Seehorn studied drawing and painting as a young child. The actor told The Wall Street Journal that at a young age she would visit her grandmother's studio to draw and paint. When she graduated high school, she went on to study painting and drawing in college at George Mason University. For Seehorn, acting was just another creative outlet but the one that eventually called to her the loudest.
And though she wanted to pursue a career as an actor, she carried her love of creating physical art with her, even as she achieved success in Hollywood. In a 2016 tweet, Seehorn was asked if she painted to which she replied, "Those are my bird paintings above Kim's bed, seen in the #Cobbler episode of @BetterCallSaul Ta-dah!" Then one of the writers of the show, Thomas Schnauz, posted a shot of the birds.
In July of 2020, Seehorn posted a pic of anoil painting portrait she'd done, writing that it was the first in 20 years. She didn't say who the portrait was but as one of themany fans who tweeted a response of praise, "She could be a young Kim." Other responders were asking to see more art from Seehorn, who clearly has many talents.
She lived with Bob Odenkirk
While making the series "Better Call Saul," some of the actors gave a whole new meaning to "taking your work home." Rhea Seehorn, along with co-stars Bob Odenkirk (Saul) and Patrick Fabian (Howard), actually shared a home while filming the show, which is set in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Seehorn laughed about it with Jimmy Kimmel in 2022, telling him people typically find it strange, but she thinks it's great. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that she got the biggest bedroom with her own bathroom.
Strange living arrangement or not, it's clear that the stars' bond is strong. In a 2022 red carpet chat with Variety, Odenkirk credited Seehorn with saving his life when he had a heart attack while they were still in production the previous year.
In Season 6 of "Better Call Saul," Odenkirk and Fabian's housemate slash co-star also became their director — a shakeup that, on paper, seems like something that could make for an interesting roomie dynamic. The episode "Hit and Run" isSeehorn's television directorial debut (she also directed two short films). In a 2022 chat withUSA Today, she shared,"It was alternating just sheer joy and sheer adrenaline and terror," Seehorn said. She also talked about how it wasn't just her experience that helped her in this new role; her powers of observation played in as well. "I also like learning all of the other cogs in the wheel of this giant, collaborative art form," she added.
Her first Primetime Emmy nom arrived in 2022
Having droves of adoring fans is one thing — a great thing, actually — but being recognized within your industry for the work you do is quite another. While Rhea Seehorn's portrayal of Kim Wexler became a fan favorite on "Better Call Saul," somehow the elusive Emmy nom passed her by year after year. As oneHollywood Reporterwriterasked in an open letter to the TV Academy,"So how can you possibly keep ignoring Seehorn?"
One organization that didn't ignore Seehorn was the International Press Academy, who awarded the actor back to back Satellite Awards in 2016 and 2017. Seehorn has also received individual award nominations from Television Critics Association and Critics Choice as well as collectively nominated by Screen Actors Guild for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama. In 2019, she took home a Women's Image Network award for her role in "Better Call Saul."
With "Saul" in its final season, this was the last chance for the television academy to recognize Seehorn's work on the show, and thankfully, they came through. Nominated for Supporting Actress in a Drama in 2022, Seehorn comes up against another big fan favorite, Julia Garner for "Ozark." Of finally getting the nom, the actor toldThe Hollywood Reporter she is grateful for all the years of support from her fans and colleagues, adding, "So it was just so sweet and so touching to then be nominated, which, of course, I cared about. It was joyous."
How much is Rhea Seehorn worth?
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The starving artist might not be a tale as old as time, but it's been around long enough for Rhea Seehorn to experience her own version of it. In 2003 the actor was still looking for her show biz break. She'd been doing theater and landed a few small roles, but it wasn't enough to make a living solely off her acting gigs. In fact, according to a Rolling Stone article, Seehorn was a receptionist at the time, having to clean toilets as part of her responsibilities. Then she landed an audition that would lead to her recurring role on "I'm With Her," taking her to the next level of salary.
Then, after several notable and recurring roles in TV shows like "The Starter Wife," "Whitney," and "Franklin & Bash," where she fortuitously played an assistant DA, Seehorn landed the role on the "Breaking Bad" spin-off, which has spanned six seasons. According toVariety, when Seehorn took on the part, she called it her "dream job." Just how dreamy? According to Celebrity Net Worth, the "Better Call Saul" star'snet worth rings in at about $3 million.
Rhea Seehorn is happy to play a 'horrible' character
Before the sixth and final season of "Better Call Saul" could draw to a close, Rhea Seehorn put another iron in the fire. In 2022, AMC releaseda short-form digital series called "Cooper's Bar" that stars Louis Mustillo, Casey Washington, David Conolly, Kila Kitu, and yes, Seehorn. But if fans of Kim Wexler are hoping for more of the same from Seehorn, however, they may have to look elsewhere. Her new character, Kris Latimer, is nothing like the beloved fictional lawyer. In fact, according to Seehorn, Latimer is something of a jerk. And the actor welcomes the change. "I am horrible, which is fun," she said to Variety in November of 2021."[Kris is] somebody that steps over recliners and just screams and yells at people and has no tact whatsoever."
Seehorn is also one of the show creators, a producer, and a director. The fact that this is short-form may have scared some actors away, but if it was a risk for Seehorn, it's already paid off... in the form of anEmmy nom. In 2022, Seehorn was nominated for Outstanding Actress In A Short Form Comedy Or Drama Series for her role as Kris Latimer in "Cooper's Bar." We'll raise a glass to that.