Meryl Streep is one of those actors who has a career so huge that her name transcends above simply another big Hollywood name. The name Meryl is just about synonymous with endless heaps of talent, and she has the accolades to prove it. Streep holds the record for the most nominated actor, with 21 Oscar nods and three wins. But did she live up to her name on the set of Netflix’s musical The Prom?
According to Kerry Washington and Ariana DeBose, hell yes she did! The actors play mother and daughter in Ryan Murphy’s splashy musical, and were a part of many scenes next to Meryl Streep. The top-tier actress plays fictional Broadway has-been Dee Dee Allen, who travels with her squad of glitter-wearing performers to Indiana to help a teen get her wish and go to prom. Meryl’s most show-stopping number in The Prom is in the beginning of the movie for “It’s Not About Me.” Hamilton actor Ariana DeBose reflected on watching Streep do her thing:
My first day on set was watching her film the number and that was a treasure trove of joy and lesson in acting… and I have to say, working on Broadway for such a long time, it takes stamina to do shows eight times a week and to do numbers eight times a week. And that’s a huge number. Ms. Meryl was belting full out for hours on end. Kudos to her and she sounds fabulous.
Not that age would stop her anyway, and it doesn’t really matter, but for those, wondering Meryl Streep is 71 years old and beyond fabulous apparently. While Ariana DeBose, who played the Bullet in Hamilton and will be Anita in West Side Story, was on set, she sat in awe of Streep’s amazing stamina throughout the filming of The Prom sequence. Similarly, Kerry Washington was mentally dropping her jaw. Here’s what she said:
I just kept waiting for her dance double to step in and I just kept waiting for her to stop singing at full voice. I was like, ‘at what point is she going to pull Meryl Streep rank and be like, I’m just going to lip sync this next one and I’d like the dance double to do the next take?’ Never happened. Never happened.
Kerry Washington gushed about Meryl too, talking about how she wouldn’t blame the actress one bit if she had decided to bring in a dance double or rest her voice for the shoot. But apparently, she just kept going and going. It sounds magnificent really. The “It’s Not About Me” number is the moment when Streep’s Dee Dee Allen makes her grand entrance to the Indiana school to protest the prom Washington’s Mrs. Greene has cancelled because she does not approve of Jo Ellen Pellman’s Ellen of taking a female student as a date to the prom. It's part of the scene referenced here:
During the sequence, Kerry Washington’s character has to vocally ask Dee Dee to stop her performance and show some serious disgust for her beautiful barge-in. As she told CinemaBlend, it was some of the “hardest” acting she had to do because she was absolutely enraptured by Meryl Streep’s performance. You can check out The Prom streaming on Netflix now.