Sarah Shahi Talks ‘Reverie’ And Storytelling Ambitions: “I Want To Touch People”

Reverie - Season Pilot
Sarah Shahi as Mara Kint -- (Photo by: Sergei Bachlakov/NBC)
In the new series Reverie, Sarah Shahi is Mara Kint, a former hostage negotiator turned professor who gets a huge opportunity to help other people. Affecting change is part of Reverie’s fabric, and in the video below Shahi discusses how storytelling has made a lasting impact in her life. 

Kathryn Morris as Monica Shaw, Sendhil Ramamurthy as Paul Hammond, Sarah Shahi as Mara Knit, Jessica Lu as Alexis Barrett, Dennis Haysbert as Charlie Ventana — (Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/NBC)

Mara Kint’s mission is to rescue people from an all too addictive virtual reality program that has taken over their daily existence. In real life, Sarah Shahi would lose herself (in a positive way) with an abiding love for cinema (one of her biggest influences is director Robert Altman). She also explains why, even after 15 years of steady work in the entertainment industry, she is “just as excited as when” she first started (transcription of the video is at the end of the post):


“I feel like I’m at the very beginning of my education in this business. I’ve been doing this for 15 years now and I go on set every day and that overwhelming sense of ‘Oh my God, I’m in Hollywood I get paid to do this – I’m doing this.’ I’m still just as excited as when I first started. I’m just as eager to learn and I want to touch people. That was always my goal.

I remember being a little kid and watching Sophia Loren movies, Julia Roberts movies, whatever it was and I just remember being swept away by the story. And the feeling I got as a little girl and I wanted that. And that’s all I’ve ever cared about. I want to give someone else that warm, fuzzty feeling in their hearts.

As a kid, for me, it meant so much. Growing up with a single mother, I had an abusive father. We spent some time at a women’s shelter. There was a lot of stuff that went wrong. I had to grow up really quickly and my escape truly became those actors and actresses that I was watching. They made me feel something that nobody else could make me feel. That was always my goal – I wanted to make other people feel the way I felt.”

Reverie premieres Wednesday, May 30 on NBC (10 pm et/pt).

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