Scoop: Revenge Casts Emily's Mom — Look Who Scored the Plum Role!

Jennifer Jason Leigh RevengeRevenge issued a casting call for a sinister white female to play Emily VanCamp‘s MIA onscreen mother, and man, did they ever find one.

Sources confirm to TVLine that Jennifer Jason Leigh has scored the role of the Clarke family’s presumed dead matriarch. The recurring gig will kick off early into the ABC drama’s upcoming second season.

RELATED | Revenge Season 2 Exclusive — Meet Emily’s New Mystery Man!

“This [character] is going to have some deep psychological issues,” Revenge creator Mike Kelley told TVLine back in May. “So we’re going to need somebody that can play volatile and dangerous; all of the scariest parts of Emily’s personality are going to be present and apparent and a little bit out of control in her mother. But at the same time, what works so great for Emily is that sweet façade, so this woman needs to feel like she’s got potential for kindness. You look at her and you don’t know that she’s as damaged as she is inside. But you’ll quickly learn that this is a very dangerous person.”

Leigh is currently recurring on the final season of Weeds‘ as Jill, older sister to Mary Louise Parker’s Nancy.

Thoughts? Did Revenge‘s casting directors hit the bullseye by hiring Leigh? Weigh in with your thoughts below!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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63 Comments
  1. flem_snopes says:

    How the mighty have fallen!

  2. Summer says:

    ….I never actually thought about her for the role. Might be a good way to go, though.

    • julea says:

      Anyone recall SWF, Single White Female????? She has the acting chops to go from sweet and demure to psychotic in a breath….excellent casting.

  3. martina says:

    Ok, she’s supposed to portray a tough woman but she’s known to play vulnerable and damaged characters. I hope it works out, but I don’t see her as Emily’s mom!

  4. Robyn says:

    but she’s so badddd @weeds and what happent to her face in the last episodes.. ugh. elizabeth mitchell was robbed…

  5. Irishgirl says:

    Hmm…..not sure. Will have to reserve judgement until I see her first ep, but she would not have been my first choice.

  6. Bobbi says:

    I think it is a great choice!

  7. CJ says:

    Could be interesting…maybe along the lines of Lena Olin/Jennifer Garner on Alias where the relationship played out overthe season and really grew into something amazing

    • ZmaX says:

      exactly what I was thinking. that mother/daughter dynamic made Season 2 the best of the series :) i’m realy excited about this

  8. Allie says:

    she can do “deep psychological issues” – see “single white female”

  9. SarahJ127 says:

    I think that’s an inspired choice! I’m excited, now.

  10. wtfnyc says:

    Not convinced. I was hoping for someone with both a classy side (to match up to Victoria) and a bat sh*t crazy side (to match up to, well, the show). I don’t see JJL as the former at all.

  11. I think it will be a great casting. Will be scary to see what Emily would be like if she was pushed eve more to the extreme. :)

  12. truthtakestime says:

    Revenge has (mostly) filled the hole left by Alias’ cancellation. On Alias, my favorite relationship was Sydney/Irina, and I’ll admit I’m stil irritated at how the finale “resolved” that. (Irina was NOT just a crazy villian; that was too simplistic. Lazy writing.) Revenge has a real opportunity here, and while I’m trying not to bring my leftover waytooobsessedwithAlias brain along for the ride, I hope they explore the relationship’s complexities without assassinating any characters in the process. So far, though, Revenge’s writing has been more consistent, but it’s been only one season. Not sure JJL can pull this off; I was rooting for Mitchell.

  13. Ana says:

    She will be perfect. She was seriously disturbed in Single White Female. It was scary…

  14. Gerald says:

    Not only is a a great actress but she can do crazy very well ( see Single White Female). That being said, I was hoping for someone like Sharon Stone…. Not my first choice, but I’m willing to give her a chance.

    • Romain says:

      Sharon Stone was too glamourous for the part and she looked too similar to Lydia IMHO, which is why I wanted someone edgier, like Holly Hunter or Jennifer Jason Leigh. Really can’t wait for Season 2 now!

  15. april-ann says:

    Wow, what an excellent choice in casting. I’m impressed. One of the best actresses ever. She is underrated. She can do anything. I have never watched this show but I sure will now.

  16. Deion says:

    Indeed? Well played.

  17. Romain says:

    Absolutely love her, she’s a brilliant actress! I wanted her or Holly Hunter, but for some reason, I felt she would turn it down. Looking forward to seeing her on the show already!

  18. Libby says:

    dang! I was really hoping Marg Helgenberger would get the gig…

  19. Frankieboy says:

    good actress! But I had Cynthia Watros in mind.
    but happy either way, love Jennifer’s work on Weeds.

    • Alice says:

      Cynthia Watros is 43. Way too young to have a 28 year old daughter. Again, unless David Clark was a pervert who seduced underage girls 10 years his junior- as he was clearly mid-late 30s at least at the time of his arrest. Ick Ick Ickity Ick!

      • katy917 says:

        If he was mid-30s then her mom would be mid-20s if she was 10 years younger. How is that underaged or icky?

  20. Tenika says:

    Did you see Single White Female? She’s Ape stuff crazzzy….

  21. David says:

    Kinda disappointing. Don’t know her work, but I hope it works.

  22. Sandy says:

    God, she’s awful on Weeds. Really bummed about this….

    • Shaden says:

      Give her some time to grow on you on Weeds. She’ll do great as Emily’s mom.

    • Dr. Bombay says:

      Totally agree…but in fairness the whole show has been pretty awful for a couple of years now so maybe it’s not her fault. But she is really pretty bad…

  23. Candice says:

    She’s perfect. The minute I read her name, I thought Single White Female. She can definitely do crazy.

  24. Lorie says:

    Brilliant!

  25. matt says:

    Its not that I’m mad at Revenge or its [spectacular] shorunner & creator, Mike Kelley, bt I really wished they would’vepicked someone with a better name sch as Julianne Moore or Heather Locklear, whom both would’ve been UH-MAZING in the role. The problem that Revenge has is that it onle has 2 semi-big names (Madaleine Stowe, Emily VanCamp)
    But, I have to say, the no-name actors on Revenge (Henry Czerny, Gabriel Mann) are very stellar actors.

    Another thing – Revenge was totally srewed over at the Emmys. Not ONE SINGLE NOD. Not even in the Creative Arts section! None. Zero. Zilch. I am SICK of these stupid cable shows and their raunchy, HORRIBLY-scripted, and sex-filled content WINNING! this has to stop… i’m sorry.

    • Gerald says:

      Okay…..

    • aciel says:

      i agree i’m sick and tired of the same shows getting nominated over and over again come on shows like revenge or ouat deserve some recognition. oh btw i really liked jennifer on single white female but don’t know if she could pull of this role

    • Jan says:

      Have faith. Revenge has had very few mis-steps.

    • greysfan says:

      Agree with the Emmy snubs. Emily and Madeleine were so snubbed but that is what the Emmy’s do. IMO they only look at a handful of shows they like and choose people. Its been happening way too long now. They need to put in Best NEW categories for dramas and comedies and they need to split the drama and comedy categories either for Broadcast and Cable or by the number of episodes ordered for that season. Say make it 12 episodes and under and 13 episodes and over. Its a lot lot harder to make a 22 episode season. I would like to see a cable network try and do it. I bet they would have just as much trouble as the Broadcasts do.

  26. Susan White says:

    Emily Is The Best!! Please Don’t Take Her Away!!! The Girl you picked as her replacement Doesn’t Hold A Candle To Emily!! Doesn’t Even Look Like Her!! Get A LIFE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. ggny says:

    WAY better picture of JJL. There she looks like she could be Emily’s Mom. Kinda funny my comment about JJL not being good look enough to play Emily Vancamp mom got removed then that picture went up =D

    But thats why i love TVLine

  28. Anonymoose says:

    She kind of looks like Kirsten Dunst :o

  29. Mika says:

    Score!!!!!!!!!!

  30. greysfan says:

    She may have been bad on Weeds but i can see her playing that deep, dark and damaged character of Emily’s mother. However i will wait to pass judgement until i have seen it. One thing i will say is at least its not Sharon Stone. Anyone but her would be fine.

  31. cjeffery7 says:

    dont know anything about JJL, but that description of Emily’s mom sure sounds a lot like…. EMILY! HELLOOOO! (only difference is we KNOW emily is scarred on the inside, ya know, cause she’s the main character and all) LOVE LOVE LOVE all the ALIAS references HOLLAAA

  32. Izzy says:

    Single White Female! So we know she can plays intense, crazy. And that they do look alike helps.

  33. Kalo says:

    I’m not sure about this. Maybe I’ll wait and see. Never really liked Jill on Weeds.

  34. luli says:

    i wanted marcia cross :(, but who knows maybe she is a good choice…

  35. SJ says:

    I was pulling for Dana Delany, especially since they’re only doing 13 Body of Proof episodes and she’d be “staying in the family” as it were (both shows are on ABC/ABC-produced) but I’ll reserve judgment until I see Jennifer Jason Leigh (who I only know by name) until I see her on the show.

  36. trista says:

    volatile and dangerous – couldn’t have chosen better than single white female herself! Love the casting and LOVE the show!

  37. Magically Suspicious says:

    I really hate her on Weeds, so I hope this goes better. I would hate for her to ruin another of my favorite shows for me.

  38. NancyW says:

    Perfect choice…

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