Ben Platt
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Mena Suvari: The Beard of the Summer

Mena Suvari: Beard of the Summer!

On June 7 (tomorrow!), Mena Suvari — best known for her films American Beauty and American Pie — returns with American Woman, a 1970s-set Paramount Network series based on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Kyle Richards’s L.A. childhood. In it, she plays Kathleen, a young gal with a gay boo. Here, the all-American actress explains.

What are Kathleen’s biggest hurdles? 
She’s so caught up in image and appearances and struggling because she’s not married yet. She’s in a relationship that isn’t honest, but doesn’t see that. Yet.

Right. Her boyfriend, Greg (Cheyenne Jackson), is closeted.
This was during a time when she’d never consider that Greg likes guys. She just thinks there’s something wrong with her.

Have you known women who ended up with gay guys? 
I have! And Kathleen and Greg are inspired by a couple our showrunner knew. The man was gay, but the connection was amazing, and they still love each other.

So should viewers root for Kathleen and Greg?
I think so. There’s still love there, and the show’s about how things aren’t black-and-white. That’s why I love it.

Watch the premiere of American Woman on Paramount Network on June 7 at 10 p.m EST.

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