My Favorite Mistake: Connie Britton

Article excerpt

Byline: Connie Britton

The 'Nashville' star on getting yelled at by Ed Asner.

Once I decided to be an actor, I spent a summer working at the Cleveland Play House as a PA on a production of Born Yesterday with Ed Asner and Madeline Kahn. Now, I wasn't getting paid anything, but that's what you do when you're in college and you're trying to have an experience, and it was a pretty cool experience to have.

One week, I was asked to go into the theater on a Saturday to help Ed Asner with his lines. By the way, my parents were living in Akron, which is about an hour away from Cleveland, so I was driving about an hour to the theater every day. So I drove in and I showed up at the theater, and it was ... dark. I was really confused. I found a phone--yes, that's right, this is before we all had cellphones--and I started calling people so I could see if anybody knew where Ed Asner was, because I needed to help him with his lines!

Finally I got in touch with someone who gave me his number. So I called Ed Asner. My voice was shaking, and I said, "Um, I'm here to help you work on your lines?" I don't even know if he knew who I was--he just wailed at me through the phone. "Do you think I'm coming into the theater on a Saturday? You've got to be kidding me! You gotta come over here if you want to help me learn my lines!"

So I got in my car and I proceeded to start hysterically crying. I was so upset. When I finally made my way to his house--you know, I'm aging myself, but this was before the days of MapQuest and all that--it was much later than when we were supposed to be doing this thing. And he opened the door and he was really grumpy about it. …