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What would you do if everything in your material world, everything you take comfort in, was suddenly ripped away from you? How would you behave? That’s the theme of the hit Netflix series Orange Is The New Black where a young middle-class character named Piper Chapman find herself doing time in prison for carrying a suitcase full of drug money.
While it hardly compares to dodging a toothbrush shank, Taylor Schilling, who plays Chapman on Orange, had her own share of setbacks early in her career. Her first role was in a film called Dark Matter, starring Meryl Streep, but it got buried when the story too closely resembled a real-life tragedy. Her next role was the lead in the network medical drama Mercy, but it was cancelled after one season. Then all her lines were cut from the film Argo.
But just like her Piper character, Taylor has stuck it out. In the new Canadian/Irish film Stay, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, she plays a woman whose past informs her future. It’s a theme that’s echoed in Taylor’s own life off-screen.