Switched at Birth Interview: Lea Thompson Talks What’s Coming Up For Kathryn

LEA THOMPSON

Lea Thompson, who plays Kathryn Kennish on Switched at Birth, is excited for fans to see the fall premiere of the popular show. During a recent conference call, TV Equals was there to ask her about her role, her storied career and more.

On gaining new fans

Thompson has found that her work on Switched at Birth has endeared her to a whole new generation of fans. Yes, it’s been really exciting connecting with a different demographic. It’s also really beautiful for me to get a tweet that says, ‘Oh, my God Kathryn Kennish is mom, I just saw her in this movie Back to the Future. She plays Lorraine Baines,'” she said. “It’s like the opposite, they’re discovering my older work, and I really enjoy it.”

Targeting families and young girls is very important to Thompson. “I also think that this program, the network’s targeted toward teenage girls and their mothers but there [are] also men that really like to watch the show with their families. But I think that it’s a really important thing to do a show,” she said. “I think teenagers, or [teenage] girls[,] are so complicated and so hard to navigate, and I feel really proud to be part of a program that in some way helps young women have a voice and deal with issues and think about things in a productive way. And I really love that I have that fan base, because I have two.daughters.one of them is 21 and one’s 17, [and] I just lived through those years and I know how they need good role models and ways of speaking about issues with their moms and sometimes, when you see it on TV, it’s a great way to talk about things. So I’m really happy to have this new group of fans and I’m really excited about the show.”

What’s coming up for Kathryn

The fall episodes see Kathryn gaining fame through her book about finding her biological daughter. This change makes things a little different for Kathryn and her husband John (D.W. Moffett).

“Well, I think it’s one of those things where you’ve been married for a long time and then all of a sudden the person that you thought you knew everything about changes and your perspective on them changes. Kathryn is just coming into her own, she’s getting a voice of her own, and I think she was always a little more subservient or something to her husband in terms of his fame and him having all the limelight, and now she’s got a little bit of limelight, and it definitely shakes things up,” said Thompson. “And that’s a really interesting lesson to learn about marriage, is that, and I’ve been married for 23 years, and so things change and you have to adjust to that. And in a lot of ways it’s great. It adds a new spice to your marriage.”

Another change comes in the form of an attractive lawyer. “I think there’s a lot of ups and downs within their marriage, and also there’s a young lawyer that’s helping them with the case against the hospital and he takes a little bit of shine to Kathryn, which is so surprising to her, she hasn’t really thought of herself that way for a long time, so that’s also kind of a shock to their marriage, I think,” said Thompson. “But D.W. Moffett, who plays my husband, is such a wonderful actor and I have such a great time working with him, I love everything he does, so it’s kind of fun to have conflict and get to act with him that way.”

Living in Hollywood

Thompson talked about some of the things she’s learned throughout her extensive career.

“One of the interesting things is that the more that I’ve seen the more famous you get the more miserable you get. It’s a very hard world to live in and I think it’s even worse now with everybody having a camera. I think that that and if you believe your own publicity it’s just misery,” she said. “Also, honestly, if you do good things, good work, work that you’re proud of from your own perspective, from inside your own self, it doesn’t matter if five people see it or a million people see it. If you do good work the way it feels inside of you is no different. It’s completely the same. And every single little decision you make, every single time that you’re nice to people as opposed to being mean to people, it all adds up to how you feel about yourself and how happy you are. So that’s a surprise, because from the outside it seems like you’re only happy when you’re successful, but the truth is you’re only happy when you’re doing good work and being a good person. I just feel like I’ve been always interested in doing good work no matter what the medium is or how much money I’m making or how many people are going to see it, and that’s paid off for me.”

Make sure to watch the fall premiere of Switched at Birth Monday, September 3 at 8/7c on ABC Family.