Making the Rounds With Lisa Edelstein

By Kathy Blumenstock
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, September 3, 2006

Returning for its third season, "House" stars Hugh Laurie as Gregory House, an antisocial but gifted surgeon who specializes in solving baffling medical mysteries.

Among his foils: hospital administrator Lisa Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein), who clashes with House over his medical duties even as she acknowledges his results. Edelstein recently talked to TV Week about her role and the new season:

In what ways has your character changed since the show began?

She's a more complete human being than when we started. Cuddy has been at her job long enough that now she's trying to look at the rest of her life, trying to have a child, and it will change her even more.

How would you describe the relationship between Cuddy and House?

They are naturally at odds with each other, but I don't think he drives her crazy any more than she expects or wants to be driven. He is a pain in the [rear] to deal with but he is usually right, and that doesn't go past her. I don't know where their relationship is going. I love the chemistry between them, but I think it would be more interesting if it didn't work out. I don't have a vision for how they would knock down those walls that exist between them and the outside world. They have very different tasks. His is to solve all the cases, and hers is to see that he solves all the cases without bringing the hospital down.

Do you get caught up in the hospital's life-or-death situations?

Well, we're not doing "Marcus Welby." It's not about the good doctor who's so warm and so caring. This guy House knows what he's doing. He cares deeply and is committed to what he's doing, but does he care because there's a human being he's helping, or because it's a puzzle? I think House would say it's about the puzzle, but I'm not sure that is the truth.

What's the most fun for you about playing Cuddy?

Working with Hugh Laurie, who's an incredible actor. And I like being on a show that is smart and funny and that I am not embarrassed at being on. It's fun to have the same job for a few years, to develop a character. I enjoy my outfits, although my shoes aren't the most pleasant thing to experience.

What can viewers expect in the new season?

There will be some new situations and turns, some good characters and a chance to dig deeper into the people you see every week.


Season premiere Tuesday

8 p.m.


Fast Facts

Born : May 21, 1967, in Boston

TV : "House," "The West Wing," "Ally McBeal," "The Practice," "Seinfeld," "Wings"

Theater : "Positive Me," an AIDS-related musical

Pets : Three dogs (Wolf-E, Sandwich, Bumpa); one cat, Bug. "They get along great, because my cat's got such a sense of entitlement,"Edelstein said. "The dogs are just objects in her way."

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