Deidre Hall on trading “Days of Our Lives” drama for “Hacks” laughs — and those sparks with Christopher Lloyd

Deidre Hall on trading “Days of Our Lives” drama for “Hacks” laughs — and those sparks with Christopher Lloyd

The daytime legend plays herself — and Jimmy's mom — in season 3 of the Max comedy, and had an "immediate fascination" with Lloyd's character.

Deidre Hall has a son you didn't know about.

Turns out, the Days of Our Lives star, who has played Marlena Evans for more than 45 years on the soap, is the mother of a Hollywood agent — at least in the fictional world of Hacks.

Until the Max comedy's third season, Paul W. Downs' Jimmy — whose late father was a big talent manager himself — had never revealed his mom's identity. But we finally hear him drop her name in episode 2, when Jimmy and his assistant Kayla (Megan Stalter) — who sings the praises of Deidre's "incredible body" and "perfect ass" in front of her embarrassed son — try to find a guest to join Deborah Vance (Jean Smart) when she fills in for a sick late-night host. Deidre (the character) is up for it, Jimmy tells the late show's EP (Dan Bucatinsky), but she wants to know if she can have a car service with a driver and keep it after her appearance. We also find out the daytime icon is always camera-ready.

<p>Courtesy of Max/Jake Giles Netter</p> Deidre Hall on 'Hacks'

Courtesy of Max/Jake Giles Netter

Deidre Hall on 'Hacks'

"Are you insane?" Hall replies, laughing, when asked if that's true. "That was such a funny thing for him to say. Maybe he's talking about his actual mother, who was the one who thought that I should play her. But let's just say, yes, I'm always camera-ready."

Hall credits Downs (who co-created the series with his wife, Lucia Aniello, and Jen Statsky) and his real-life mom's love of her NBC-turned-Peacock sudser for the casting decision. The chance to portray a version of herself excited the 76-year-old actress. "I love comedy. I adore comedy. I get very few chances to do any," she tells Entertainment Weekly. "The offer was just: Would you come and play the legendary Deidre Hall? I thought, 'Oh, that's hilarious.'"

Related: J. Smith-Cameron unpacks that emotional showdown with Jean Smart on Hacks (Exclusive)

Hall can rarely work on other projects because her Days schedule is "so set in stone," but lucky for her the soap happened to be dark when Hacks came calling. In season 3, episode 7, when we finally see her for the first time, Jimmy and Kayla show up at her house for Christmas dinner with a special guest: Larry Arbuckle, grandson of silent film star Fatty Arbuckle, whom they're trying to woo to get the film rights to Fatty's life story, which Kayla has learned is the dream role for Deborah's late-night-host competition and would tempt him out of the running.

<p>John Johnson</p> Deidre Hall (left) and Christopher Lloyd (right) on 'Hacks'

John Johnson

Deidre Hall (left) and Christopher Lloyd (right) on 'Hacks'

Emmy winner Christopher Lloyd plays Larry — and the sparks between him and Hall were instant.

"We had written some things that were flirty, but the chemistry was palpable," Downs recently told EW.

Hall couldn't agree more. "I didn't have a backstory with [his character] because my son is introducing us," she explains of the stars' interaction, "but I could play an immediate curiosity, an immediate fascination — and then he picked up on that and that's what we played."

Related: 2024 Emmy nomination predictions: Outstanding Drama, Comedy, and Limited Series

Lloyd, she says, made that part easy. "We were all awed by him," she recalls. "He's been so larger than life to all of us. I was excited to work with him and have my scenes be with him, and he doesn't disappoint. He comes to play."

Adds Hall, "At one point I said, 'This is a single woman, and her son is bringing somebody home for supper, and maybe we can read more into that.' He said, 'Yeah, I like that!' So we played into that a little more.'"

<p>Jake Giles Netter/Max</p> Paul W. Downs, Megan Stalter, Deidre Hall, and Christopher Lloyd on 'Hacks'

Jake Giles Netter/Max

Paul W. Downs, Megan Stalter, Deidre Hall, and Christopher Lloyd on 'Hacks'

The showrunners have teased that they're talking about doing more with the guest stars, should the series get renewed.

"I didn't know that," Hall says, surprised.

But given that fans are used to seeing her immersed in the big drama of Days' Salem (Hacks gets in one apropos nod to a classic Marlena storyline), she now finds herself wondering, "How do they like me doing comedy?"

Read the original article on Entertainment Weekly.