Sadie Leah Klein
Stage mothers can have a bad rep, thanks to being immortalized by such iconic figures as Mama Rose – but stage fathers, in many ways, are so much worse. And stage fathers who have failed youthful acting aspirations and have made a living as second-rate talent managers for those with more starry-eyed Broadway dreams than actual talent to back up those dreams? Those are the worst of all.
Let's be clear: neither David nor Rachel Klein were exactly fit to be parents – she was far more invested in travelling all over the world in her job as a photographer than settling down at home to work at cultivating a stable family life, which left her husband more or less in charge of their two girls, and his idea of childrearing was to push them into the spotlight as soon as they could walk, in the hopes of fanning any sparks of artistic talent into flames. Fortunately for him (and unfortunately for his girls), neither proved to be tone-deaf nor cursed with two left feet, and any inherent shyness was soon worn down to a studied polish by ceaseless rehearsing.
So this was how Sadie had made her debut on Broadway as Young Cosette in Les Misérables – not because she liked acting or singing or putting on costumes and stepping onto a stage beneath the blinding lights, but because that's what good girls did, and if you do anything enough times then you get reasonably good at it, and she did like being good at things. It was this sense of routine and that desire to be good at things that made Sadie absolutely willing to follow daddy's directives to audition for a spot at the highly competitive LaGuardia High School: she was aging into that awkward period of early adolescence that straddles "adorable little moppet" and "wide-eyed young ingénue" for which there weren't many roles, and if she couldn't act then she might as well "hone her skills".
To the surprise of absolutely no one who knew her, Sadie booked a spot. Boy, what a mistake that was. It turned out that the hyper-competitive environment would indeed spur Sadie on to hone her skills as an actress, sending her shooting up to the top of all performance-based classes and making her a fixture in school productions. It also became painfully apparent that she didn't know how to forge and maintain friendships that can withstand the tensions of competing for the same role or the awkwardness of having to stage-kiss another girl's boyfriend. The more successful she was on the academic and performance-based side of things, the more isolated and lonely she became.
But if high school was a nightmare, then Juilliard was veritably the ninth circle of Dante's Inferno.
Sadie landed her first film role before her first semester was finished; it was as a glorified extra, true, but she could count Julia Roberts as a costar as a result. Successful auditions trickled in with surprising regularity even though the majority of her focus was still on school, and a year later, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind took the world by storm as an instant modern classic – and promptly made her famous, a legitimate It Girl who young men fantasized about and magazines wanted to photograph. A lot of people would have killed to have had her luck; she in turn had a stress-related breakdown in the middle of an Alexander Technique group session, which gained her sympathy from approximately none of her peers. The isolation she had learnt to deal with grew to take on a more malicious edge as she kept working throughout her four years, and as a coping mechanism, Sadie became increasingly focused on achieving professional success in her burgeoning career as one of the only things in her life that she could control, once she unceremoniously divorced herself from her father's influence.
Within two year of graduating, like a true Cinderella story, she had Tony and Oscar nominations under her belt, a steadily rising profile in Hollywood as a serious young talent, and a deal with Chanel as the new face of Coco Mademoiselle. And if she was an emotionally volatile, hypersensitive, insecure bundle of raw nerves beneath the chic outfits and enviable CV, well, what of it? So what if she was a walking stereotype of a high-strung Hollywood starlet? At least her professional reputation remained commendable and esteemed directors were happy to work with her. At least she kept doing exemplary work. At least it was easy to get people to recognize and admire her for her talent and her looks and her willingness to make cute Funny or Die videos, even if it was harder to get them to like her as a person.
It didn't ever really seem to be a question of if Sadie would ever get an Oscar, but more a question of when and for what role. As it turned out, the role would be for a project that serendipitously hearkened back to the very beginnings of her career as an actress: Les Misérables. For all that the media glibly claimed that she threw herself into the role of Fantine with the dedication of someone gunning hard for the Oscar, the truth was that she did it with the devotion of someone who had indelible emotional ties to the show from early childhood, as someone who didn't know how to hold anything back. So she got her statuettes, and she got roundly mocked for uncontrollably crying through her Oscar acceptance speech, and for a brief period in early 2013, it became en vogue to irrationally dislike Sadie Klein because she just tried so hard at everything.
But winning that Oscar seemed to have turned a corner in bolstering her self-confidence, because for the last year, Sadie has seemingly... mellowed. Her interviews are funnier and more lighthearted, a long and fruitful working relationship with Noah Baumbach sees her becoming a screenwriter and producer with Frances Ha, and for the first time in a long time, she seems to be comfortable in her own skin. Because let's face it: haters can hate all they want – she has the world at her fingertips, and all before the age of 30.
name: Sadie Leah Klein birth date (age): 5 November 1984 (29) occupation: Actress/Writer/Producer place of birth: Bridgeport, CT current residence: New York, NY family: DAVID (father, 54, talent manager), RACHEL (mother, 53, photographer), NAME (sister). sexuality: Heterosexual (Kinsey 1) relationship status: Single constant companion: Russet
Film IN DEVELOPMENT: GET HAPPY .......... Judy Garland 2015: MIDNIGHT SPECIAL .......... Kirsten Dunst's role 2015: BLACK MASS .......... Catherine Greig 2014: UNTITLED PUBLIC SCHOOL PROJECT .......... Greta Gerwig's role, Co-Writer, Producer 2014: WHILE WE'RE YOUNG .......... Producer 2014: FOXCATCHER .......... Nancy Schulz 2013: FROZEN .......... Anna (voice) 2013: SIDE EFFECTS .......... Emily Taylor 2012: LES MISÉRABLES .......... Fantine 2012: FRANCES HA .......... Frances, Co-Writer, Producer 2011: W.E. .......... Wallis Simpson 2011: MARGARET .......... Lisa Cohen 2010: GREENBERG .......... Florence Marr 2009: THE OTHER WOMAN .......... Emiilia Greenleaf 2009: ADVENTURELAND .......... Lisa P. 2008: RACHEL GETTING MARRIED .......... Kym 2008: GET SMART'S BRUCE AND LLOYD OUT OF CONTROL .......... Agent 99 (uncredited cameo) 2008: GET SMART .......... Agent 99 2007: STARDUST .......... Yvaine 2007: MARGOT AT THE WEDDING .......... Maisy Koosman 2007: HOTEL CHAVELIER (SHORT) .......... Jack's Ex-Girlfriend 2007: THE DARJEELING LIMITED .......... Jack's Ex-Girlfriend 2006: SUPERMAN RETURNS .......... Lois Lane 2005: THE SQUID AND THE WHALE .......... Sophie Greenberg 2004: ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND .......... Mary 2004: MYSTERIOUS SKIN .......... Wendy 2003: CAMP .......... Fritzi Wagner 2003: MONA LISA SMILE .......... Art History Student
Television 2012: THE CORRECTIONS (pilot, not picked up) .......... Julia Vrais 2009-2012: THE SIMPSONS .......... Jenny / Princess Penelope (3 episodes) 2008-2012: SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE .......... Herself / Host (3 episodes) 2011: THE 83RD ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS .......... Host
Stage 2015: I'M GONNA PRAY FOR YOU SO HARD (OFF-BROADWAY) .......... Writer 2014: YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU (BROADWAY) .......... Alice Sycamore 2013: HOW TO MAKE FRIENDS AND THEN KILL THEM (OFF-BROADWAY) .......... Writer 2013: THE LAST FIVE YEARS (OFF-BROADWAY) .......... Cathy Hyatt 2011: THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK) .......... Portia 2010-2011: ANGELS IN AMERICA (OFF-BROADWAY) .......... Harper Pitt 2008: REASONS TO BE PRETTY (OFF-BROADWAY) .......... Steph 2006: THE LIEUTENANT OF INISHMORE (BROADWAY) .......... Mairead 2003: A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC (NEW YORK CITY OPERA) .......... Fredrika Armfeldt 1998-1999: RAGTIME(BROADWAY) .......... The Little Girl 1995-1996: LES MISÉRABLES (BROADWAY) .......... Young Cosette
Miscellaneous 2007-PRESENT: CHANEL COCO MADEMOISELLE .......... Spokesmodel 2014: JIMMY FALLON: BROADWAY VERSIONS OF RAP SONGS .......... Anne Hathaway's role 2012: FUNNY OR DIE PRESENTS: THE SAD-OFF WITH SAMUEL L. JACKSON AND SADIE KLEIN .......... Anne Hathaway's role 2012: DO IT ANYWAY (MUSIC VIDEO) .......... Secretary (Anna Kendrick's role) 2010: FUNNY OR DIE PRESENTS: PROTECT INSURANCE COMPANIES PSA .......... Olivia Wilde's role 2008: FUNNY OR DIE PRESENTS: SADIE KLEIN DOES IT EARLY .......... Olivia Wilde's role 2007: STOLEN (MUSIC VIDEO) .......... Girl (Olivia Wilde's role) 2005: WAKE ME UP WHEN SEPTEMBER ENDS (MUSIC VIDEO) .......... Girl (Evan Rachel Wood's role) 2005: AT THE BOTTOM OF EVERYTHING (MUSIC VIDEO) .......... Girl (Evan Rachel Wood's role)