How did Emmy Rossum manage to embody someone who she herself describes as an “enigma”?

The short answer? A lot of research and one amazing dinner.

Rossum stars as Angelyne, the real-life figure who loomed large over Los Angeles in the ’80s—literally, with billboards across the city—in Peacock‘s new series of the same name. “She was all anybody could talk about,” Rossum told E! News’ Daily Pop in an exclusive interview. “I think she’s absolutely a fascinating icon. She’s the original influencer…the first person to say, ‘I’m going to be famous for who I am, not something that I do.'”

But even as Angelyne and her pink corvette rose to notoriety in L.A., the woman herself remained a mystery. “There are so many wild, often very contradictory stories that exist about her,” Rossum said, “so our show is a very, very unconventional look at all of the different mythologies that are surrounding this trailblazer.”

In order to sort out all the stories, Rossum went to work. Luckily, she’s a “nerd when it comes to stuff like this.” 

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