Natasha Lyonne just might be the first female Philip Marlowe.
The “Russian Doll” Emmy nominee channeled the iconic fictional detective for the upcoming Peacock series “Poker Face,” premiering January 26. Produced by Rian Johnson, “Poker Face” follows private eye Charlie Cale (Lyonne), who travels across America to solve bizarre crimes.
“I’d always been obsessed with all iterations of Philip Marlowe,” Lyonne told Nylon about her inspiration for the role. “And I’ve long admired and imitated some of our great mumblers who were often noir types. [After] ‘Russian Doll’ came out, I guess people were noticing that aspect of my personhood.”
Lyonne directs an episode of the series and also executive produces the show, which features guest stars Adrien Brody, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Cherry Jones, Tim Meadows, Nick Nolte, Rhea Perlman, Ron Perlman, Jameela Jamil, Judith Light, Chloë Sevigny, Hong Chau, Lil Rey Howery, Stephanie Hsu, Tim Blake Nelson, Charles Melton, Luis Guzmán, Ellen Barkin, Clea DuVall, and Benjamin Bratt.
“What [creator Johnson] does is just beautiful, and his work also is nothing but heart,” Lyonne said of the “Knives Out” director. “I guess ‘Russian Doll’ really is ‘outsider art,’ for lack of a better term.”
Lyonne has a cameo in Johnson’s “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” to which she stated, “I’d never really been embraced or put at the center of something that was potentially quite so welcoming and universal.”
Raymond Chandler’s fictional character Marlowe has been played by Elliott Gould, Humphrey Bogart, James Garner, and Robert Mitchum in classic noir films like “The Big Sleep,” “The Long Goodbye,” and “Lady in the Lake.”
“Poker Face” creator Johnson previously said in a press statement that the series is a “character driven, case-of-the-week mystery” that is an ode to the “goodness I grew up watching. It’s my happy place.” The trailer for the upcoming series shows Lyonne grappling with cases and her personal life.
In addition to “Poker Face,” Lyonne has been preparing for a “secret movie” in which she will star in and produce.