Sex/Life is a daring show for any actor. Luckily, that was part of the reason Sarah Shahi wanted it.
“I have always been trying to get into projects like this. I just never got hired,” the actress, 41, said on the “Watch With Us” podcast. “Everyone was always trying to hire me to be the tough chick and paid me to keep my clothes on. I’ve been wanting to be a bit risky and cry and show emotional vulnerability for a while now.”
The Netflix series, in particular, seemed like the perfect fit.
“I found out that this was a piece that was written by a woman, directed by all women,” the L Word alum explained. “It was just such an ability to stand for something, to stand for femininity, to be able to be a voice in a way that I felt was really important for women across the globe.”
Shahi, who shares three children, William, 11, and twins Violet and Knox, 6, with ex-husband Steve Howey, also wanted to share a prominent message as a mother.
“You can be a mom and still want to be the sexual goddess at the same time. The two don’t have to lose one for the other,” she told Us. “I’m a mother of three incredible children myself and having been in a long-term relationship in the past, I often found myself questioning some of the things that Billie was questioning — her desire for sort of this sexual freedom and liberation that she was feeling. Just that sense of where did that other girl go? It’s like, remember when I used to be fun? Those kinds of questions, like, before the long-term relationship and before the kids.”
The former Person of Interest star added that she also learned from Billie to “live life to the fullest” and focus on the little moments.
“She has such a large appetite for life and she wants so much and she doesn’t make any apologies for it, which I just think is so beautiful,” Shahi added. “What I learned from her was to really sort of dig into the truth of who I was and the stuff that I wanted and to not feel ashamed by them — whether it was something sexually that I wanted or if it was a goal or a desire that I had in my life. It’s like, I’m a working mom, and it was important for me to really sort of live the truth of who I am to be able to show my kids.”
For more from Shahi, watch the video above and listen to the “Watch With Us” podcast.
Sex/Life is now streaming on Netflix.