Cristin Milioti on ‘The Resort’, ‘Made for Love’ and Going Phoneless

Cristin Milioti regularly leaves the house without her phone. The custom started a few years ago, when the actress had plans to meet a friend in New York City and she forgot to bring her cell phone. “I got on the train and I panicked,” she recalls via Zoom from Puerto Rico, where she is filming her next comedy, bar, and mystery series. The station. “I was like, what am I going to do? What if something happens?

But panic finally gave way to peace. “We were together for nine hours and it was a blessing,” says Milioti. “Really [was] a day off, and I was really impressed, ‘What does that mean, a day off?’ Shouldn’t every day be like this? I got home and had a few missed calls and a few texts, but everything was fine.”

Inspired by the writer Virginia Woolf, Milioti decided to make the unexpected episode an intended recurrence. “I read a quote where he talked about how important it is to go for a walk alone at night,” says Milioti. “I really try to, at least a couple of times a week, let [my phone] at home, take my dog ​​for a walk and disappear into the world.”

Deepak Chopra has referred to the state of not being present as “time sickness”. Time sickness requires healing through self-awareness practices like meditation, journaling, or, in Milioti’s case, ditching her phone to go for a walk. Many people have likely been suffering from weather sickness as a result of the pandemic, but even before COVID-19, intense homesickness had the ability to trigger weather sickness symptoms. It makes sense that those concepts are on Milioti’s mind as he shoots his latest project, The stationwritten by Andy Siara, the writer behind Palm Springsstarring Milioti opposite Andy Samberg.

“[The Resort is] about time and the toxicity of nostalgia,” says Milioti. “At certain points in my life, I looked back and thought, ‘If only I could go back to that time that was golden.’ You romanticize a certain period of your life and you are not present. We have this obsession to go back to when we were younger, when things were better. Every generation has it, not wanting to be where we are now.”

Siara’s participation in The station, along with co-stars William Jackson Harper and Ben Sinclair, piqued Milioti’s interest in joining the project. “I think [Siara] he’s immensely talented and I love the way he tells stories and the way his brain works,” he says. “[The director is] Ben Sinclair, who did everything high maintenancewhat, I’m a big superfan. [And I did a play with] William Jackson Harper years ago.

But the underlying theme of nostalgia in The station particularly intrigued by Milioti, who, like many Millennials, watches (with great curiosity) Gen Z’s current obsession with early Aughts. “The whole Y2K trend is crazy. Here I am looking at people wearing the stuff I wore in high school and saying, ‘Isn’t that cute?’” he says. “We were romanticizing the 1970s then. Or, I don’t know what we were doing.”

On April 28, HBO Max released the second season of made for love, in which Milioti plays Hazel Green, a young woman whose reality has been rudely manipulated by her husband, a tech entrepreneur who invented a tracking device and implanted it in her brain. “We explored a lot this season about who we would be without our trauma and baggage,” says Milioti. “Would we get out of our own way, finally, or are we predestined to be who we are? There’s a lot of interesting stuff in there about the things we do for love and the ways we often do terrible things to the people we love in the name of not wanting to let them go.”

In a break from acting, Milioti, who was once a Tony Award nominee, released a cover of Bon Iver’s “715 Creeks” last year. Shortly after, it became known that he was working on a debut album. But when he is asked about that album, Milioti admits that he has put the recording sessions on hold. “I got in my own head and didn’t finish it, which I should probably address,” she says. Meanwhile, she’s been listening to singer-songwriters like Kacey Musgraves, Phoebe Bridgers, Caroline Polachek and Mitski lately. “Everyone shares a galaxy,” she adds. A cosmic whale or something.

Milioti says she’s a huge fan of Fiona Apple in particular, so much so that a production designer once made her a custom t-shirt that featured the singer giving her famous acceptance speech during the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards. During this interview, in fact, Milioti wears this very shirt, and speaks at length about the speech, clearly taken with its existential message. “It’s unbelievable. She’s like, ‘This world sucks,'” Milioti says. “‘This is all lies. This is all PR. Don’t do what we say is okay. Follow yourself.'”

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