Barrymore As Zombie Mom? She Says The Wild Role In Her Netflix Series ‘Santa Clarita Diet’ Gave Her New Life

By Yvonne Villarreal
Los Angeles Times

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Drew Barrymore shares her experiences filming her new Netflix series the Santa Clarita Diet.’ Barrymore says the production provided her an opportunity to rejuvenate her life following a divorce from her husband of four years, Will Kopelman, last summer.


Drew Barrymore was in the middle of chaperoning a clamorous kiddie play-date, theme: Disney princess, at her Los Angeles home when the subject of vomit came up.

Fake vomit, to be clear.

It was a Friday afternoon and Barrymore was child-like in her enthusiastic description of the artificial puke she became intimately acquainted with during production of “Santa Clarita Diet,” her TV series headlining debut.

“Oh my God, you should have smelled it,” she said in her signature vocal cadence. “It smelled worse than vomit. Like something in the mixture was spoiled. It was so disgusting, but also so cool and fun. I wanted more of it on me!”

She realizes this is an odd thing to say. But not any more bizarre than learning her first lead TV series role is in a quirky comedy in which she plays a suburban wife and mom who becomes a zombie.

Barrymore, 41, has been a Hollywood mainstay since she was a youngster, coming from a legendary theatrical family and rising to fame at age 7 with “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” Over the last 18 years, she’s become synonymous with bouncy, girl-power-type characters (“Charlie’s Angels,” “Whip It,” “Going the Distance”) in which she starred and, in some cases, produced through her company Flower Films.

“Santa Clarita Diet” is in that vein, only with a bit more flesh and blood.

In the new Netflix comedy, which is available to stream starting Friday, Barrymore stars opposite Timothy Olyphant (in his follow-up TV role to FX’s “Justified”) as couple Sheila and Joel, real estate agents who live in the easygoing California suburb and whose lives are upended when Sheila dies, after a torrential gag-fest (hence, the barf talk), and is reborn as a zombie with special dietary needs for human flesh. The series, the brainchild of Victor Fresco (“My Name Is Earl,” “Better Off Ted”), tackles a variety of issues, such as the strength of love, narcissism and self-empowerment.

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