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Olivia Thirlby

Olivia Thirlby

The Wackness


September 2008

Olivia Thirlby admits that listing RADA on her c.v. is “kind of a joke.” It’s not like the natural born New Yorker spent her 18th summer in London treading the boards with Dame Judi, or in fact getting much Shakespeare tuition at all. “It was their non-audition programme – they didn’t take it seriously.”

With or without RADA, though, Thirlby’s hipper-than-thou vibe is moving her right up casting lists. She auditioned for Juno but ended up playing her quippy best friend, Leah, and she steams up The Wackness, a brainy, early-90s-set stoner comedy that sees her streetsmart high-school seductress Stephanie slumming it one summer with the teen dealer (Josh Peck) who keeps her stepfather (Ben Kingsley) in ganja. Not only does she look smoking in a bikini, she deflowers Peck’s loner in an open-air shower before dumping him. “She is a heartbreaker but I know where she’s coming from,” muses Thirlby. “She’s hanging out with this guy having a totally great time and then he busts out with, ‘I love you.’ It’s like, ‘You need to calm down.’”

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