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Envelope Emmy Week: Bringing personal experience to the role and not knowing what direction their character might go [video]

June 9, 2011 |  6:15 pm

As part of the Envelope Emmy Week and Screening Series, we gathered a group of actors to participate in an Alternative Families panel earlier this week — Jennifer Carpenter of "Dexter," Peter Krause of "Parenthood," Cloris Leachman of "Raising Hope," Denis O'Hare of "True Blood," Emmy Rossum of "Shameless" and Katey Sagal of "Sons of Anarchy" — to talk about how each of their shows, in their own weird ways, involve the bonds of family, and the intimate relationships those bonds can bring.

In the hourlong conversation moderated by Times television critic Mary McNamara, the panel, in the clip below, discusses what they bring of their selves to their character, like Sagal's fierce maternal instinct, or how the cast and crew themselves become a sort of family and when someone is written off the show there's a weird emptiness, says O'Hare. Rossum and Carpenter agree that everyone has the experience they need; whether it's pain or happiness, there is something they can draw on. 

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— Elena Howe

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