Images by Jan-Willem Dikkers
“Every audition, every role, they’re all something I can mold and make unique.
It’s so fun to play pretend for a living. I’ve been able to visit
so many places and meet so many interesting people because of it.”
— GENEVIEVE BUECHNER
From Vancouver, Canada, Genevieve Buechner is an actor featured in Lifetime’s hit show UnREAL (2015-). Buechner has appeared films such as The Final Cut (2004) and The Hollow Child (2017) and TV series including The 100 (2014-16) and Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce (2014-).
Genevieve Buechner is best known for her portrayal of Madison on Lifetime’s hit show UnREAL. I photographed her at an Airbnb in Glendale while she was in Los Angeles doing promo for the new season of UnREAL.
Where are you from?
I’m from Canada. I was born in Edmonton, Alberta, but grew up in Vancouver, British Columbia. Half of my life in a city, and the other in the prairies outside and around Edmonton! I’m still not sure which I prefer, farm or city!
How did you get started as an actor?
I started when I was very young. I was nine years old and begged to be allowed to try acting. My parents said, “Ok, we’ll try it out,” and obviously, it stuck! I was lucky, and booked a film pretty quickly and fell way more in love with acting than I expected. I still love it just as much.
What do you like most about your line of work?
It’s always different. Every audition, every role, they’re all something I can mold and make unique. It’s so fun to play pretend for a living. I’ve been able to visit so many places and meet so many interesting people because of it.
What about your character on UnREAL do you identify the most with?
Honestly, we are so vastly different (another reason I love my job). Her morals are a little out of line in my opinion. She’s super fun to play and it’s always exciting to see what crazy thing she’ll do next when I get the scripts. I suppose if I have to pick something we have in common, we are both super passionate, but in our own ways. She’s also pretty stubborn, which I absolutely can be.
What projects are you most drawn to?
I’ve really been missing the science fiction genre. It’s been a while since I’ve done anything like that, and I’ve always had a great time on those sets. Being on a fake spaceship is pretty cool. It’s also fun to see all the creativity that goes into the sets and wardrobe. But I just love being on set no matter what, it’s always exciting. I’ll never get bored of it. It’s always changing and surprising.
Who inspired you most growing up?
My family. I look up to everyone in my family for different things and their support meant (and means) the world to me. Also books. I loved stories and when I was little I would put myself in the characters places. It’s the same now, reading has a huge impact on how I feel and how inspired I am.
Do you recall your first favorite t-shirt?
I still have it actually! It’s this horribly ugly t-shirt that belonged to my mother when she was a kid. It’s a really thin white ribbed cotton t-shirt with blue and pink flowers? I’m not sure if they are flowers actually. I think they are, but it’s an odd pattern. The collar is boatneck and stretched, and it’s full of holes. It just looks the worst, but it’s so comfy and I love it.
What do you like to do when you are not working?
Watch movies, read, paint, make things! I draw on everything. EVERYTHING. I have way too many art supplies. Every time I see something I haven’t tried I become obsessed with that medium until I have the chance to try it out. I used to sew a lot, but I don’t have a sewing machine at the moment. I can be a little introverted sometimes, and I really love just sitting at home and reading.
What are some of your interests beyond acting?
Travel. I love seeing new parts of the world and learning about how other people live. It’s fascinating and important. Learning how other cultures work helps me keep an open mind and reminds me that there is always room for improvement. There are so many places on my list and hopefully, I’ll manage to check them all off!
What’s next for you?
I’ve been so busy with UnREAL that I haven’t put too much thought into it. I’ve enjoyed working with the cast and crew so much I haven’t really found myself wondering about the future. Right now I’m just super excited for people to watch season 3 (and season 4) and to find out what they think! I’m also super excited to see the episode of X-Files I got to do. I’ve always been a fan of the show and I was so happy I got to work on it. But for now I’ll be spending some time in LA and maybe something fun and interesting will come up!