Keri Russell on the Perfect Timing of The Americans Final Season

The star of the FX spy drama dishes on the show’s eerie parallels to modern-day U.S.-Russia relations and the projects she wants to tackle next.
The Americans is gearing up for its sixth and final season, and star Keri Russell thinks the timing is just right.

“It’s always nice to be able to be given the option to go out on a high note instead of at year 15 when they’re running out of storylines,” she tells The Hollywood Reporter. “It will be sad to see it go but the time is right.”

Always a critical darling, the FX drama didn’t break into the Emmys until last year, when it received its first series nomination and nods for stars Russell and Matthew Rhys. Though the series didn’t crack the outstanding drama category this year, the co-stars still landed nominations in their respective acting categories.

Ahead of the Sept. ceremony, THR chatted with Russell about the end of Philip and Elizabeth’s journey, the show’s eerie parallels to modern-day U.S.-Russia relations and the projects she wants to tackle next.
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Why Keri Russell is very grateful for The Americans changing her life

When Keri Russell started on The Americans in 2013, she had no idea how much it would change her entire life.

“It’s all been good change, and I’m very, very grateful for it,” the actress, 41, says in this week’s issue of PEOPLE. Of course, she’s referring not only to her success in the Emmy-nominated role but also to gaining a partner in costar Matthew Rhys, 42, with whom she has a son, Sam, 1. (She’s also mom to River, 10, and Willa, 5, from her previous marriage.) “It’s been a wild, crazy run of a show.”

And the show that brought her a new love, a new child and a new outlook on life — “this summer feels like the Summer of Yes!” she says of her overall optimistic attitude — is wrapping up soon. She will start shooting the sixth and final season in October.

“It will be sad, but it feels kind of right too,” says Russell of The Americans ending after next season. “The hardest thing would be watching something that is so creative and well thought out to become played out. It feels like the right time to get out while it’s good, and I feel like they have a real solid last season of storylines. I feel like it’s the right time.”

She’ll also miss working alongside Rhys. “That brings its own complications — as anyone who works with a partner experiences — but I think I’ll miss it, too. There’s something so great about having someone so close for funny moments or really hard moments or really mundane moments, like ‘Can you pick up laundry soap on your way home because we’re out?’ or ‘We’re out of milk.’ ”

So, before returning to film the show’s final season this fall, Russell is taking the summer to “rest and be with my kids, so I can go back and be awake and present for the last few episodes of the show,” she says. “It’s been life-changing to me in many, many ways that show, and I just want to enjoy it. I want to really relish those last few moments of it.”

That means her summer is filled with date nights with Rhys, which “usually involve riding our bikes and cold beer,” short trips upstate and to the Hamptons (she recently journeyed to the summer enclave to host a dinner with Saks Fifth Avenue), as well as a two-week trip to Wales to visit Rhys’ family “and introduce the baby around.” Especially because he’s growing so quickly: “He’s like a no-neck rugby player,” says Russell (Rhys is a notorious fan of the sport). “He’s like a tank!”

Other than that, “we’re just hanging around, enjoying summer in the city,” she says. “We’re mellow. We really love our home in Brooklyn, even when it’s hot and sweaty.”

Source: http://ew.com/

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Keri Russell Has Zero Regrets About the Infamous Felicity Haircut: “I’m Really Glad They Did It”

Though she’s mostly well known for Felicity and the critical darling The Americans, Keri Russell has a long list of credits that stretches back to the Mickey Mouse Club. When she was 17, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera were just coming on the show as cast members. That Disney show was her first big break before the series that has cemented her status in the pop culture firmament, and arguably shaped her career. Russell played Felicity Porter, an idealistic high school student as she’s making her way to college. When she cut her hair, it caused a national uproar. But Russell says she’s got no regrets. “I did not expect all the hysteria,” she says. “I feel like it was so the right move and I’m really glad they did it.” Russell won her first Golden Globe for the show—which was created by Matt Reeves and J.J. Abrams, who would later cast the actress in Mission Impossible III—and was nominated earlier this year for her acclaimed spy series The Americans, which is coming to a close next year, a conclusion she’s slowly coming to terms with.”It will have been six years and I just feel like they have a really good ending,” she says.
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Keri Russell Says Riding a Bike in High Heels Is Her Favorite Summer Activity

Sneakers, schmeakers! When it comes to riding a bike, Keri Russell prefers stilettos instead.

“I feel extra summery being on my bike in high heels,” The Americans star, 41, told PeopleStyle after co-hosting the Saks Fifth Avenue & Vogue ‘Kick Off the Summer’ dinner at EMP Summer House in East Hampton, N.Y. last night. “It feels very over-the-top decadent somehow.”

And it’s something the mother of three — to River, 10, Willa, 5 (from her former relationship with carpenter Shane Deary) and Sam, 1 (with her Americans co-star and partner Matthew Rhys) — loves doing all summer long, especially when going out with Rhys.

“[Date night] usually involves night bike-riding, and these days, high heels,” she says. “I just love dressing up. When I was younger, I drove a pickup truck and I wanted to wear boots and jeans everywhere, and as you get older, you’re like, ‘Being a girl is fun.’”

Therefore, it’s no surprise she chose a pair of ankle-tie heels to complete her girly Johanna Ortiz top and ruffle skirt look while hosting the dinner in the Hamptons last night. “I’ve just been so entranced by Johanna Ortiz and what she’s doing lately,” says Russell. “She’s just so fun and it feels so feminine, and so I asked if I could borrow something from her new collection.”

Russell credits costume designer Frank Fleming for helping her choose the two-piece combination. “I met him on a film years and years ago, and now he helps me as a favor as a stylist,” she says. “I kind of have an idea of what I want and then Frank makes it better, always. He always leads me down the right path.”

Her transition from a tomboy to feminine style isn’t the only major change she’s made in her 40s. The former poster girl for curly hair — Felicity Porter for life — is now obsessed with Keratin hair treatments. “I get it once or twice a year and it’s a dream come true,” she says. “It’s everything to a curly haired girl, because you don’t have to blow it out, you don’t have to do all these things to it — nothing. It can be wet and you can walk out the door and it looks good.”

And it especially comes in handy being a busy mom: “It’s a life-changer, and a time-saver,” she says. “There’s no time to brush your teeth, let alone blow dry your hair!”

Source: http://people.com/

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Can Keri Russell spy a victory against Elisabeth Moss & Claire Foy?

In the red-hot race for Best Drama Actress, most of Gold Derby’s Emmy experts are split between Elisabeth Moss (“The Handmaid’s Tale”) and Claire Foy (“The Crown”). However, one expert — Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes) — goes rogue in predicting that Keri Russell will win for her long-running character of Elizabeth Jennings on FX’s Russian spy drama “The Americans.” It took four years for Emmy voters to nominate Russell, Matthew Rhys and “The Americans” in the drama races, and now increased buzz and attention could bring Russell her first victory.

In Russell’s favor is the fact that she’s constantly going undercover as Elizabeth, so she gets to play many different versions of the same character. That’s like catnip to Emmy voters, who love seeing performers show their range and versatility. Just last year fan favorite Tatiana Maslany (“Orphan Black”) won for playing multiple clones, with different looks, accents and personalities. With Maslany out of contention this year, might Russell benefit? Eighteen of our 20 experts think that Russell will at least be nominated, though only Lordygan forecasts that she’ll win.

Source: http://www.goldderby.com/

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The Americans’ EPs Talk ‘Action-Packed and Emotion-Packed’ Final Season

As FX’s critically acclaimed drama “The Americans” heads toward its final season, the show’s creators Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields came to the ATX TV Festival to discuss their approach to the last ten episodes, but managed to artfully evade revealing too much about the fates of Philip and Elizabeth Jennings and their family.

Fields and Weisberg admitted that with all the talk of Russia in the news, they often devoted lunch hours to talking politics, but current events didn’t spill over into the plotlines. “When we write the show, we’re in a bubble,” said Weisberg, in the panel moderated by Variety‘s executive editor of TV Debra Birnbaum. “We don’t want people watching and thinking those clever writers put something there about Donald Trump.”

Fields said that the recent headlines of Russians spying on Americans and tampering with elections did impact them. “We’ve spent years learning how good the Russians were at this kind of spy craft,” he said “To see it play out on the news now at this high level is staggering.” Weisberg added, “When the show started, things were peaceful with Russia. We thought we’d humanize people who were thought to be our enemy, and now, a few years later, people are foaming at the mouth about them.” Continue reading The Americans’ EPs Talk ‘Action-Packed and Emotion-Packed’ Final Season

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The Americans Creators On Slower Season 5 Pace & Action-Packed Final Season 6

Following the recently wrapped season 5 of FX’s spy drama The Americans, Creators/Eps Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields hit up Austin’s ATX Television Festival and offered a bit of insight into what’s to come in the sixth and final season.

Though no specific plot details were revealed, Weisberg teased that it will be “action packed and emotional packed.”

“A lot of pieces hanging out there, a lot of stories,”he said, adding, “threads to who these people are and how their lives are gong to end up… we’ve got 10 episodes to pull that all together.”

The duo said they’ve known early on how the show would end. “Our stories sometimes change a lot, we write pretty far ahead and we’ll have ideas written down in pretty extensive thoughtful form earlier on and then some will stay with us,” said Fields. “The ending itself has stuck since middle of season 2”

Season 5 left off with Elizabeth (Keri Russell) and Philip Jennings (Matthew Rhys) having to put a hold on their plans to return to the Soviet Union with their children. Continue reading The Americans Creators On Slower Season 5 Pace & Action-Packed Final Season 6

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Look for some new faces in the drama acting categories at the Emmy nominations

LEAD ACTRESS DRAMA

Elisabeth Moss, “The Handmaid’s Tale”

Claire Foy, “The Crown”

Keri Russell, “The Americans”

Viola Davis, “How to Get Away With Murder”

Robin Wright, “House of Cards”

Evan Rachel Wood, “Westworld”

Prime contenders: Christine Baranski, “The Good Fight”; Claire Danes, “Homeland”; Mandy Moore, “This Is Us”; Carrie Coon, “The Leftovers”; Taraji P. Henson, “Empire”; Rutina Wesley, “Queen Sugar”

Analysis: Russell, Davis and Wright — all nominated last year — should return, and you can’t completely discount the chances of Danes or Henson repeating too, as both women have strong followings. And Baranski has 15 Emmy nominations, including six for playing the Diane Lockhart role that she’s reprising on “The Good Fight.” She can’t be taken lightly.

Source: http://www.latimes.com/

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The Americans and its stars forge on — who knew Russian spies could be so relevant?

One thing that makes FX’s lauded Cold War drama “The Americans” so compelling is the chemistry between Keri Russell, who starred in four seasons of “Felicity” in her early 20s, and Welsh actor Matthew Rhys. As Elizabeth and Philip Jennings, Russian spies living as Americans in 1980s suburbia, they make their kids’ lunches and then slip away to don disguises, seduce sources and break necks for the Motherland.

But Russell and Rhys’ electricity on the show, created by former CIA officer Joe Weisberg and just having finished its fifth season before a 10-episode sprint to a series finale, is nothing compared to the sparks they throw off in real life.

Settling into the series’ writers room in gritty Gowanus in New York’s Brooklyn, surrounded by whiteboards with scribbled plot points and grainy show stills, the couple, who have an infant son (Russell also has two children from a previous relationship), are clearly simpatico — finishing each other’s thoughts and cracking each other up.

Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings and Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings on “The Americans.”
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Keri Russell Is Very Satisfied With How the Final Season of The Americans Ends

Together onscreen and off! Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are gearing up for the sixth and final season of playing spies Philip and Elizabeth Jennings in The Americans.

While catching up with Us Weekly at the 10th annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Jersey City, New Jersey, on Saturday, June 3, Russell, 41, said that she knows how the FX series concludes and that she’s “very satisfied” with the ending. “They’ve done such a good job so far — the writers — so I’m willing to give it up and let them do what they want,” she said.

Although the real-life couple, who welcomed son Sam in May 2016, will miss working together every day, Rhys, 42, is looking on the bright side. “The glory is we will be with each other every day,” he told Us.

It’s not all business when they’re filming together, though. The actress revealed that the duo goof around on set while transforming into the different personas as their characters go undercover. “What’s cool about doing all these crazy disguises is that it takes time with the different clothes and the weird hair, and we make fun of each other,” Russell said.

Rhys added, “It’s what we’ve kind of come to enjoy most about the show is the diversity it throws up and those daily challenges of playing three people in the morning or eight people in a day.”

Rhys also said it’s been fun to go back in time for the 1980s-set show — and that the young actors are amazed by the old-school technology. “I remember when Keidrich [Sellati, who plays his son, Henry] came into the living room for the first time, he went up to the VCR and went, ‘What is that?’ He’d never seen a VHS eject a tape,” Rhys joked. “He thought it was witchcraft.”

Source: http://www.usmagazine.com/

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