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How Rachel Brosnahan Went From Witty Call Girl To Comedian

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Photographed by Jonathan Grassi

‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ premieres on Amazon later this year

The following feature appears in the September 2017 issue of NYLON.This fall, a slew of new and returning series are hitting the airwaves and popping up on streaming services. Here, we spotlight some of the breakout stars that make those shows must-see TV. To read more from this series, click here.

Rachel Brosnahan’s road to stardom was pretty typical: scores of ill-fated auditions, a handful of bit parts that eventually led to a clutch supporting role on a buzzy show (House of Cards, in which she portrayed a sharp-witted call girl), followed by an Emmy nomination. But Midge Maisel, the aspiring comedian whom the 26-year-old plays in Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino’s upcoming comedy The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, had a less traditional path to the top.

Born And Bred Bookworm: “I’ve always been a voracious reader. I’m half British, so my family always spent a lot of time between the U.K. and the U.S. Every time I went to England, I’d pack an entire carry-on just filled with books, then I’d leave them at my grandparents’ house and fill that same carry-on with different books to bring home with me. I think that’s where I caught the bug to act, when I was imagining a world bigger than ours. Reading creates the sense of empathy you need for acting.” 

I’m Dying Up Here: “I’ve never done comedy before, so the idea of playing a stand-up comedian was literally my worst nightmare—but in the most exciting, satisfying way. I was all about living this nightmare. It’s good to scare the bejesus out of yourself every now and then.” 

A Strong Stance: “I don’t love the term ‘strong women.’ What does that mean, really? It’s a very masculine trait that we assume is a good thing when ascribed to female characters. I like what it means, that women can be strong, but I think women are inherently strong. But there are so many different types of women being represented on TV. From what I understand, to be a comedian, you’ve got to have some real shit going on deep down.” 

Take-Charge Women: “I fuckin’ love Amy. She steers a tight ship with crystal-clear vision. I was a huge Gilmore Girls fan growing up, so working with her was like a dream I didn’t even know I had—she packs so much into every script. This has been the most demanding shooting process I’ve ever been a part of. I’ve never worked with a team of women like this, with Amy and Dhana [Gilbert] as producers, women assistant directors, women in grips and electric, and on a show about an extraordinary woman.” 

Styled by Heather Newberger. Hair by David Cruz for Kevin Murphy at Art Department. Makeup by Anne Kohlhagen at Artlist for Christian Louboutin Beauty. Jacket and pants by Marni. Top by Kenzo. Earrings by Swati Dhanak.

Photo by Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images.

It marks her third duet with Nas

Here are some words that I never expected to read or hear again: There is a new song with Amy Winehouse. But here we are in 2019, and Salaam Remi has granted me a wish. On Valentine's Day, the Grammy-nominated producer and frequent Winehouse collaborator (also responsible for hits like Miguel's "Come Through & Chill") released "Find My Love" which features rapper Nas and that powerful and haunting voice that I have come to love and cherish so dearly.

Representatives for Remi said that the Winehouse vocals were from an old jam session the two had. Remi was a producer on both of Winehouse's albums, Frank and Back to Black. "Find My Love" marks the third time Winehouse and Nas have done duets under the direction of Remi. They were previously heard together on "Like Smoke," a single from her 2011 posthumous album Amy Winehouse Lioness: Hidden Treasures, and "Cherry Wine" from Nas' 2012 album Life Is Good. Winehouse died of alcohol poisoning on July 23, 2011, before they could complete production on her third album. My heart is still broken about it as she is by far my favorite artist.

"Find My Love" is set to appear on Remi's Do It for the Culture 2, a collection of songs curated by him. Check it out, below.

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Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images

"In the midst of chaos there's opportunity"

Following the travesty that was Fyre Festival, Ja Rule wants to take another stab at creating a music festival. Good luck getting that off the ground.

On Thursday, the rapper spoke to TMZ, where he revealed that he was planning to relaunch Icon, an app used to book entertainers, which is similar to Billy McFarland's Fyre app. He told the outlet that he wanted to create a festival similar to Fyre to support it.

"[Fyre Festival] is heartbreaking to me. It was something that I really, really wanted to be special and amazing, and it just didn't turn out that way, but in the midst of chaos there's opportunity, so I'm working on a lot of new things," he says. He then gets into the fact that he wants to form a music festival. "[Fyre] is the most iconic festival that never was... I have plans to create the iconic music festival, but you didn't hear it from me."

Ja Rule actually doesn't seem to think he is at all responsible for what came from Fyre Fest, claiming in a Twitter post that he was "hustled, scammed, bamboozled, hood winked, led astray." Even if that's his feeling, he should realize that anyone involved with Fyre shouldn't ever try their hand at music festivals again.

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