A random interview from a few years back...
-First off, you should know that the gays love it when you turn up on Popular.
Well, I should hope so! Cherry Cherry taps into all my specialties: big hair, fun clothes, big makeup, beauty queen--and it doesn't hurt that she was the town's wealthiest woman. The funny thing is, Ryan Murphy, the show's creator, loves to read Cherry Cherry in the run-throughs, and he has her down perfectly. So I just try and copy him as best I can.
-Were you popular in high school?
No. They didn't know what to make of me because I was always doing pageants. I would wear hairpieces to school, and for Christmas I wore my Santa elf costume with thigh-high red boots. I'd cut school to go for beauty queen appearances, and my mother would write funny notes to explain my absence, like `Delta's been kidnapped,' because the teachers all knew that I was cutting a ribbon somewhere.
-In your new series, DAG, you play the first lady. Did you base your character on any real first ladies?
No, I just went with a good, sturdy Republican hairdo, which I can say because I'm a Republican. I didn't get to do my eyeliner like I love so much--with the wings--but you cope.
-You raise some serious hell in your upcoming movie, Sordid Lives, as a gun-toting white-trash housewife. What appealed to you about the project?
It was my kind of writing. I love that kind of humor, and working with [openly gay writer-director] Del Shores was a wonderful experience. I mean, I don't go around with no makeup on, letting my white-trash upper arms show, and in hair curlers for just anybody.
-Would you ever do a Designing Women reunion movie?
Oh, sure. [Creator] Linda [Bloodworth-Thomason] still calls, and she's thinking about the idea, so you never know. I still watch the reruns any chance I get. Those characters still make me laugh out loud.
-What's this we hear about your doing a movie with Mel Gibson?
Yeah, it's a comedy called What Women Want. I'm his dingy ex-showgirl secretary. Because my career's always been television, I felt like I was in my 20s, getting my first part. I showed up on set with a big or grin on my face, and the guy who's making me up, he made me up on [the made-for-TV movie] Charleston, which was my first big job, 22 years ago. That's a good sign, I think.