Maid: Margaret Qualley on starring alongside her real-life mother ‘So awesome

Maid: Netflix releases trailer for new drama show

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Netflix’s hit series Maid, became a worldwide success after it followed the life of a single mother trying to escape domestic violence. The actress Margaret Qualley who starred as Alex lifted the lid on working with her real-life mother Andie MacDowell who also portrayed her on-screen mother, Paula.

After escaping domestic violence with her four-year-old daughter, Alex was forced to navigate through America’s complicated social security system.

As well as taking viewers on a journey to Alex’s eventual freedom, the heart-wrenching series also exposed the challenges women face to receive financial assistance.

Like a majority of women in her position, Alex didn’t have any support as her father was estranged and her mother lived with an undiagnosed mental illness.

However, a majority of viewers soon discovered Alex’s mother Paula, was also the actress’s mother in real life.

In an interview with Deadline, Qualley opened up about what it was like starring alongside MacDowell.

The 27-year-old disclosed: “It was just so awesome for me to have my mum there, I really wanted it to work and I was really excited about the idea.

“I was really grateful she said yes and I felt so lucky that she came to Canada to do this with me, I’d always wanted to work with her one day.

“It dawned on me when we were quarantined that she would just be the best Paula ever, I pitched the idea and everyone loved it, it happened really fast and we were all so lucky she said yes.”

The actress explained: “The truth is that I’ve always wanted to work with her and then I realised how rich the mother-daughter relationship in Maid was.

“She’s such an incredible actor as we all know already but it was just really thrilling for me to be able to work with her.

“As far as actually doing it, it just feels like the biggest cheat in the world, like walking into a room and having your mum, be your mum just made everything easier for me.

“One of the most beautiful scenes was Paula telling Alex she was proud of her,” the actress recalled, “it was the end show, we’d been there for so long, it felt like my mum was telling me she’s proud of me and it made me so emotional.

Qualley added: “It was so freaking cool that I got to do that with my mum, it was super special and I’m really lucky.”

While the mother and daughter bond was great behind the scenes, Alex and Paula struggled to have a close relationship.

Paula was being swindled by a boyfriend who pretended to be Australian and used her money, and despite Alex’s warnings, Paula was convinced her daughter was jealous.

Paired with an undiagnosed mental health condition, their relationship was an emotional rollercoaster throughout the series.

Alex would trust her mother to care for her daughter Maddy, however, Paula would become overwhelmed and refuse to answer calls.

Towards the end of Maid, Alex had started her own cleaning business and had been accepted to start a degree in Montana.

Paula, who had been living in her car, agreed to move with her daughter and granddaughter, however, she pulled out at the last minute and instead decided to stay with her new boyfriend.

Although Alex’s life appeared to finally be looking up, Paula’s absence in the final moments highlighted the common realities with familial relationships.

Elsewhere during an appearance on The Late Show with James Corden, Andie gushed about working with Margaret and shared: “It has just been magical beyond belief.”

Maid is available to stream on Netflix

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