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How The Dropout Director Francesca Gregorini Made Her Emmy Dreams Real

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Francesca Gregorini knows that in order to reach your dreams, you have to chase them.As a director on the Hulu limited series The Dropout, Gregorini got to explore the life of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes (Amanda Seyfried), helming two episodes that take place at pivotal moments when Holmes is at the top of her fictional world and just about to start falling.The Dropout has a total of six Primetime Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Limited or Anthology Series and Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for Seyfried.

Another one of the nominations went to Michael Showalter, who also directed several episodes of the show.Gregorini directed two episodes – “Flower of Life” and “Iron Sisters,” – the latter of which earned her the Emmy nomination and features a Kubrickesque party scene full of Elizabeth Holmes masks, the most uncomfortable serenade you’ll ever see, incredible dance moves, and scenes of Holmes fumbling while trying to film a commercial with famous director Errol Morris.Those commercial scenes were some of her favorites to direct, as it allowed her to get deep into the psyche of Holmes.“They're not the actual commercial, they're sort of the outtakes, when she's messing up and trying to think of an answer.

And it's just such an opportunity to start seeing the cracks within Elizabeth,” Gregorini says. “And then of course, Sunny (Balwani, Holmes’ boyfriend and business partner played by Naveen Andrews) comes into the side and tries to manage the situation.

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