Julia Louis-Dreyfus has revealed that she demanded more dialogue in Seinfeld.
The actress became a comedy icon for playing Elaine Benes on the NBC sitcom. However, she wasn’t entirely fulfilled by the role when the show first aired in 1988, and subsequently asked co-creators Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld to give her character more to do.
“Well, I never really approached it from the perspective of my gender, per se. I wanted to just play ball with everybody,” Louis-Dreyfus told The Daily Beast.
“I’m not going to lie, in the beginning, I didn’t always have a lot to do in certain episodes. And I would go to Larry and Jerry multiple times and say, ‘Hey, you guys, write me more, I need to be in this show more.’ That’s what I just kept doing. And they did.”
She added: “But you see, they didn’t write for me as a woman. They just wrote for me, for this character, as opposed to this gender, which I think is instructive in a lot of ways from a writing point of view.”
Louis-Dreyfus earned seven consecutive Emmy nominations for her performances on the show, picking up the award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a comedy series at the 1996 ceremony.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, she said it was hard to say goodbye to the show.
“I think any time a project ends, it’s gutting for me,” Louis-Dreyfus said. “And that’s true of movies and TV shows. There is a focus and a camaraderie that’s very much present when you’re working hard on a project that you believe in, and when the circus leaves town, it’s a huge transition. There’s a real feeling of sadness for me. ‘Where did all my buddies go?’ ‘Where are my friends?’”
Premiering in 1988, Seinfeld ran for nine seasons. It followed the everyday life of stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld (playing a fictionalised version of himself) and his group of eccentric friends.
Back in February, an AI-generated spoof of Seinfeld took the internet by storm, attracting millions of views. However, the animation was suspended from Twitch after the self-generating dialogue produced a number of transphobic jokes.