Despite more than a few adversarial roles (10 Things I Hate About You and a chilling arc on Dexter come to mind), Julia Stiles has always been somewhat synonymous with the Girl Next Door.
Her new role as a part-time escort on Blue—a 12-part scripted drama airing on YouTube’s first original content channel WIGS—may change that perception forever. Not that Stiles cares.
“I think the thing about Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon is that it gives people permission to talk about desire and what they like to do in bed,” she says. “I don’t read reviews, and I don’t read the comments online. I just thought Blue was a great premise and a great set-up for conflict. I love the idea of exploring a character who’s living a secret life and is going to drown in the lies she’s telling.”
The lie, of course, is that Blue (née Francine Cooper), mother to 13-year-old Josh, moonlights as an escort who charges between $750 and $900 for a roll in the hay. “The character is obviously tempted by the money, and it’s a quick way to make a dollar, but, at what cost?” Stiles postures. “There’s got to be a psychological reason behind the decision to work as an escort because she’s not destitute, you know?”
When she’s not seducing Johns, Blue works at a small accounting firm where she dispenses life advice to her hapless colleague Lavinia (Sarah Paulson). She’s so competent, in fact, were they handing out office superlatives, Blue would get Least Likely To Get Paid for Sex. But therein lies the rub. (Pun intended.)