Adoring Maude Apatow

Maude for Cultured Magazine

Maude Apatow Has a Revolution

CULTUREDEuphoria’s good girl, Lexi, blossomed from wallflower into leading lady this season. She was just walking in actor Maude Apatow’s footsteps.

Maude Apatow was on Jimmy Fallon last night—an interview she describes as “the scariest experience ever but fun.” It’s all part of a new chapter that has taken hold for Apatow ever since Euphoria’s second season dropped in January and fans fell for her character, Lexi Howard’s out-of-the-gate romance with the show’s beloved drug dealer Fezco (played by Angus Cloud). “People are posting little meme things on Twitter,” she says, the giddy shock still in her breath. “How do I even describe this one?” Then she does: a chihuahua chomping a pillow with a four-toothed grin. “It’s something about us being cute.”

Despite Apatow’s best efforts, I don’t know if I believe her when she claims she fumbles over her words, echoing my own apology: I do better in person. Because even on the phone, she sets herself apart—as someone in command enough to pause and think rather than fill the air with talk. On-screen, she appears in full possession of Lexi and all her coming-of-age complications. Apatow embodies the salutatorian’s pillow-biting relationship to power as a reticent main character. One of the strongest parts of the performance is the way she is able to capture the simultaneous highs and lows of the teenage emotional vernacular and the alternating viciousness and compassion it inspires. All winter we’ve watched Lexi prepare for an autobiographical school play with anticipation while her friends spiral on their own in the dark. Is it a vengeful malice that keeps Lexi from telling them that she’s about to make their private lives other people’s entertainment? Or is it the fear of what might happen when she tells them how she really feels? “I don’t think it’s necessarily coming from a mean place, but also at the same time, what makes it interesting is it’s a little mean,” Apatow says, pathologizing further. “[Lexi] is super insecure and shy, but she also is super aggressive. She does have so many thoughts about things, but she’s so sad that she can’t express it. When the play comes and she’s fully in charge, she has no choice, all of that comes out.”
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Maude Covers Flaunt Magazine

Maude Apatow | With Shell Cracking Bravery and Wisdom

FLAUNT – What darkness lurks beyond the unknown? What threatens the comfort and familiarity with which we bind ourselves? A sense of wonder is a necessity if you’re not to let life pass you by—but with the worry of self preservation pressing in from all around us, we sometimes hold back. For 24-year-old actor, Maude Apatow, stepping into a character’s shoes is always an exploration replete with uncertainty, but well worth the fruits of wisdom.

It’s early afternoon when I connect with Apatow. She is swiftly on her way to a photoshoot. We begin with discussion about her origins in acting, independent of—but no doubt also influenced by—her parents, filmmaker Judd Apatow and actor Leslie Mann. Theatre consumed Apatow’s childhood, which she eagerly participated in from kindergarten all the way through high school. “I went to an arts high school,” Apatow reflects, “and we were really lucky to have a great drama department and teachers. My teachers were very supportive and encouraging of all of us, and I think that was one of the reasons I wanted to go into it.”

Apatow’s previous work includes a charming stint as Pete Davidson’s sister in dramedy, The King of Staten Island, the role of Henrietta in Ryan Murphy’s drama miniseries, Hollywood, which centers around a group of aspiring entertainers in the post-World War II era, and her career-defining appearance in the 2016 comedy-drama, Other People, of which she shares, “was the first thing I did on my own, independent of my family. I felt so adult. I thought to myself: if this was what my life could be, then I could keep doing things like this, and I was going to work as hard as I can to keep doing things like this.

Apatow has recently earned widespread attention for her character Lexi Howard in HBO’s dark drama hit, Euphoria, created by Sam Levinson. Season two of Euphoria marks an impeccable return to the hyperactive high school series that melds tense character development with stress-induced scenes and drugs and sex. Toxic masculinity, feminine yearning, substance abuse, mental health, and every colloquial identity struggle you could shake a 2020s stick at are amongst the many perils that plague the eclectic teens of East Highland High School. The first season of Euphoria courted controversy for its sensational, boundary-pushing depictions of the above, and unsurprisingly, season two is mightily carrying the torch.

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Maude Covers L’Officiel Magazine

Maude is the cover star of L’Officiel USA’s spring 2022 issue! Check out the interview and stunning photos below.

Maude Apatow Takes Center Stage

L’OFFICIEL – As Apatow’s character Lexi steps into the limelight in Euphoria season two, the actor is branching out into new roles of her own.

Maude Apatow may be a child of Hollywood—the offspring of comedy superstars Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann, to be precise—but the 24-year-old is still getting used to Euphoria-levels of attention. “I can’t even really think about it, or else I get too nervous,” she says of the white-hot hullabaloo around the hit HBO teen drama: “It scares me.” (She’s not being coy: even a cross-country Zoom interview with L’OFFICIEL causes angst enough to warrant an 11th-hour change to a phone call.) If her star-making turn in the second season of the show is any indication, however, she’s going to have to get used to the idea of more screen time, stat.

It takes a lot to break out of an ensemble cast—especially a murderers’ row of Gen Z talent like Zendaya, Sydney Sweeney, and Hunter Schafer. So when Apatow first appeared in season one of Sam Levinson’s HBO hit, her role (Lexi Howard, the bookish former best friend of Zendaya’s character, Rue) didn’t exactly make a splash amongst all of the drug and sex and digital-era-fueled mayhem for which the series is known. But in Euphoria’s sophomore effort, Apatow’s Lexi emerges with a character arc (involving a Shakespeare-style play-within-a-play, no less!) that pushes her to the front of the plot—and some of her castmates’ characters to the edge.

Euphoria’s a little campy, sure, even without the off-Broadway-level stage production Lexi cooks up: a tumult of love triangles, substance abuse, full frontal male nudity, radical bursts of violence, heartlessness, heartbreak—all shot through what can feel like an early aughts music video filter. As Apatow notes during her chat with L’OFFICIEL, its success as a show is less in accurately depicting late adolescence than accurately depicting the way late adolescence can seem while you’re in it. “In high school everything feels so dramatic and so important. If I look back at certain things I went through, it’s like, why did I even care about that? But it felt at the time like the most important thing in the world. And that’s how Sam writes Lexi,” Apatow says. “The stakes aren’t as high comparatively, but also they are. She’s taking her stuff just as seriously as everyone else is theirs.”

L’OFFICIEL speaks with Apatow about why comedies are harder than dramas, losing friends during her own high school theater-directing debacle, and her new on-screen romance.
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