The White Lotus Characters and Cast Guide: Who Stars in the HBO Dramedy? - VRGyani News and Media

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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

The White Lotus Characters and Cast Guide: Who Stars in the HBO Dramedy?

The White Lotus, an HBO limited series written and directed by Mike White (School of Rock, Freaks and Geeks) follows the experiences of the eclectic guests staying at the Hawaiian resort The White Lotus. The series is unique in a lot of ways, one being the fact that it doesn’t have one defined lead. Instead, it is made up of actors that are mostly known for their time on screen in supporting roles, making them ideal candidates for this ensemble-centric adventure. This approach elevates all of these performers, giving them each a chance to shine brightly in the spotlight.

Here’s a look at some of the stars, who they play, and the other places you might have seen them.

Jennifer Coolidge

Comedy veteran Jennifer Coolidge plays the mysterious Tanya McQuoid (“McQuoid'' is one syllable and don’t you forget it). Tanya goes solo for her Hawaiian vacation. Well, she does have her mother’s ashes with her, which she desperately wants to spread in the ocean. While we don’t know as much about Coolidge’s character as we do about some of the other guests, one thing is for certain: Tanya loves massages. In fact, the majority of her vacation is spent tracking down and befriending masseuse Belinda, who gave her the best massage she’s ever had and cured her pain from her herniated disk. One can never predict what Tanya is going to say next, as she opens up to strangers at the resort and delivers deliciously complicated monologues. If the role seems like it was written for Coolidge, that’s because it was, as Collider's Christina Radish recently learned in an interview with her.

Playing an eccentric character like Tanya is Coolidge’s specialty. She’s been a scene-stealer in several Christopher Guest projects, such as Best in Show and For Your Consideration, along with fan favorites American Pie, Legally Blonde, and Zoolander. She’s done voiceover work and appeared in a number of television shows as well, such as The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Glee, Seinfeld, Frasier, and 124 episodes of the comedy series 2 Broke Girls. She recently starred as Carey Mulligan’s mother in Promising Young Woman and will reprise her role as Paulette Parcelle in the announced Legally Blonde 3.

Natasha Rothwell

Writer, performer, teacher, and all-around comedy pro Natasha Rothwell stars as Belinda, the smiley spa manager at the resort. Hiding behind her welcoming smile is a woman who still grieves the death of her mother from a few years ago. Her spa appointment-turned-therapy-session with client Tanya is one of the more poignant moments of the series, as the two bond over the pain that comes with losing loved ones, growing closer through various healing exercises and Hindu chants. With Tanya’s encouragement, Belinda shifts her focus from her manager duties to the development of her own wellness center.

Rothwell is well known and respected in the comedy scene, performing for UCB, writing for Saturday Night Live, and starring in projects including Love, Simon, The Characters, Insecure (which she also writes and produces), and A Black Lady Sketch Show. She’s currently developing her own project at HBO, and can be seen in the upcoming sequel to Sonic the Hedgehog.

Steve Zahn

Actor Steve Zahn plays Mark Mossbacher, a well-intentioned father and husband whose Hawaiian getaway with his family isn’t going as smoothly as he’d like. He has a new lease on life after he finds out that he doesn’t have cancer, and tries to remind his ornery children that they need to enjoy every minute. He spends most of his time on vacation forcing moments of bonding with his family, trying to get his children away from their screens and instead focusing on the clean Hawaiian air.

As a graduate of Harvard, where he received a Master of Fine Arts, Zahn has charmed audiences for years, and continues to prove himself as both a comedic and dramatic actor. He played a lovable goofball in Daddy Day Care, and starred in other comedies such as the Diary of a Wimpy Kid movies, Modern Family, and The Ridiculous 6. As a dramatic actor, he’s appeared in projects such as The Good Lord Bird alongside his Reality Bites co-star Ethan Hawke, Captain Fantastic, Dallas Buyers Club, Cowboys, Uncle Frank, and Sunshine Cleaning. Next he can be seen in Gringa with Judy Greer, 8 Bit Christmas, and the animated film Robodog.

Connie Britton

Actress Connie Britton plays Nicole Mossbacher, a refined and “take charge” woman who is busy corralling her husband Mark, and three moody teens on their beach getaway. She cannot help but exude her pretentious nature, despite doing her best to relate to her daughter Olivia (Sydney Sweeney) and her friend, Paula (Brittany O’Grady). She’s the CFO of POOF (a GOOP type company, perhaps?) and according to hotel resident Rachel Patton (Alexandra Daddario) she’s “kicking the corporate world’s ass.” But the vacation is more stressful than fun, as she is tirelessly bugging her kids to wake up and get excited about the beach and breakfast buffet (which they already paid for). In between all of that, she’s rearranging the hotel furniture (or as she puts it, “improving our space”). Since they will be at The White Lotus for an entire week, she emphasizes that she’ll need “nice feng shui,” a Chinese term referring to the flow of energy. The family seems pretty unphased by her controlling behavior, as Olivia drily sighs, “Dad, she’s having another manic episode.”

Connie Britton has had recurring roles in some very popular shows, including Spin City, The West Wing, 24, Friday Night Lights, Nashville, American Horror Story, and Dirty John. She’s been nominated for several Emmys for her work on Friday Night Lights as well as Nashville, along with a Golden Globe nomination for her work on Dirty John. She is a regular in movies as well, appearing in projects such as The To Do List, This Is Where I Leave You, Bombshell, Promising Young Woman, and Joe Bell. She’s currently filming Luckiest Girl Alive, which she will star in alongside Mila Kunis.

RELATED: Connie Britton & Steve Zahn on the Complicated Marriage at the Heart of 'The White Lotus'

Jolene Purdy

Actress Jolene Purdy plays Lani, a new worker at The White Lotus. She has a lot to juggle, as she is busy pleasing and assisting new residents, learning the ins and outs of the resort, and keeping her pregnancy under wraps.

Jolene Purdy got her start as Cherita Chen in the cult-classic Donnie Darko. Since then, she’s been in several television shows such as Glee, Under the Dome, Orange is the New Black, Superstore, The Magicians, and WandaVision.

Jake Lacy

Actor Jake Lacy gets lei'd in this series as newlywed Shane Patton. Shane’s a young, arrogant, and entitled real estate agent whose vacation is up-ended when he realizes they were put in the wrong hotel suite. Rachel, his new wife, doesn’t understand what the big deal is, but Shane just cannot let it go, whining, “We’re supposed to have our own plunge pool and a private patio.” His preoccupation with switching hotel rooms and securing the upper hand over manager-turned-nemesis Armond (Murray Bartlett) takes the focus away from his stay. His determination to get the proper room is more about winning than it is about getting what he paid for, as the trip is already covered by his wealthy parents. In one of the later episodes, his over-the-top mother, played by comedic genius Molly Shannon, crashes the honeymoon.

Jake Lacy (better known by The Office fans as “Plop”) has built an impressive resume, having recurring roles in Girls, Fosse/Verdon, High Fidelity, Mrs. America, and the aforementioned The Office, playing Pete Miller, a love interest for Erin Hannon (Ellie Kemper). He’s also appeared in movies such as Miss Sloane, Carol, Obvious Child, and How to Be Single, where he shined alongside actresses Leslie Mann, Dakota Johnson, Alison Brie, and Rebel Wilson. He can next be seen in the upcoming film Being the Ricardos, which is written and directed by Aaron Sorkin and stars Nicole Kidman as Lucille Ball and Javier Bardem as Desi Arnaz.

Molly Shannon

Superstar Molly Shannon plays Shane’s theatrical mom, Kitty Patton, who interrupts her son’s honeymoon, much to the dismay of Rachel. After talking to a sad Shane on the phone, Kitty takes a detour from her spa week at the Mauna Kea (it was Cathy Clements’s idea!) to spend time with her son and daughter-in-law. Shane is genuinely thrilled his mother popped by and welcomes her with open arms. Right away, the friction between Rachel and Kitty is evident, as Shane’s mom exclaims, “I can’t believe my baby boy is married! And Rachel, you were such a beautiful bride. But also very pale. But now you have a little more color, and it looks great.” Who knows how long she will third-wheel the trip, as she giddily says, “I’m here one night, maybe two nights. I’m crazy. I’m so sorry. I’m totally crazy. I know.”

Molly Shannon has been making audiences laugh since her early days as a Saturday Night Live cast member from 1995-2001. She’s best known for her outrageously cringey characters, such as Catholic school student Mary Katherine Gallagher, Sally O’Malley, and co-host of NPR parody sketches alongside Ana Gasteyer. Shannon also has had scene-stealing roles in several television shows including Seinfeld, Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, The Other Two, Divorce, and Will & Grace. In addition, she’s had memorable performances in movies as well, both comedy and drama, including Life After Beth, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, The Little Hours, Promising Young Woman, and Horse Girl. She can next be spotted in Jeff Baena’s Italian-set comedy Spin Me Round, where she will reunite with her The Little Hours co-stars Aubrey Plaza, Alison Brie, and Fred Armisen, lending her voice to Hotel Transylvania: Transformania, and the upcoming series I Love This For You, alongside fellow SNL alum Vanessa Bayer.

You can keep checking into The White Lotus, which airs Sundays on HBO, with episodes available as well on HBO Max.

KEEP READING: ‘The White Lotus’ Review: Mike White’s Return to HBO Is a Hysterically Bizarre Miniseries With a Phenomenal Cast



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