Create & Cultivate 100: Entertainment: Zoe Lister-Jones

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“I spend a lot of time in hair and makeup,” says Zoe Lister Jones.

This is something about her glamorous Hollywood job that the writer/director/actress/feminist badass wants people, especially young girls striving for perfection, to know. As the star of the CBS family drama “Life in Pieces,” Lister-Jones fumbles through new parenthood alongside her co-star and TV husband Colin Hanks. In “Band-Aid,” the feature film she wrote, directed, and starred in last year, Lister-Jones plays ½ of a 30-something married couple still reeling from the unspoken pain of a miscarriage. (She also employed an all-female crew.) 

Committed to “storytelling as a means of change,” the Brooklyn-born actress may need hair and makeup on set, but behind the camera she has no trouble making waves.

More from Zoe below. 

Name: Zoe Lister-Jones 

Instagram: @zoelisterjones

What matters most to you about your job?

Storytelling as a means of change

When you don't always know where your next job is coming from, how do you keep your drive and passion come alive?

I need to write to process questions and quandaries that perplex me, whether personal or global. So that's helpful in fueling the fire. Art as a cathartic act.

If you ran the world, what one law you would enact?

Women have equal rights and equal pay worldwide.

Where do you think good ideas come from?

Hard questions.

"Good ideas come from hard questions."

Tweet this.

What has been your biggest opportunity and at the same time your biggest challenge?

Probably directing my first feature lm. But the challenge was ultimately part of the joy.

What's something you'd like people to know about your job that they probably don’t?

I spend a lot of time in hair and makeup. Girls and women need to know that the impossible standards of beauty we are faced with every day in pop culture imagery are rarely attainable without a team of professionals, and airbrushing, and a whole bunch of other bullshit. We gotta start to love ourselves more completely just as we are. I struggle with it too. We all do.

We gotta start to love ourselves more completely just as we are. I struggle with it too. We all do.


What about your career makes you feel the most complete?

Creating my own work. Writing a story and seeing it come to life. The freedom I feel when I'm opposite a great actor and some unquantifiable magic occurs.

If you had to trade jobs with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

I'd trade jobs with Donald Trump just to get him out of office.

I put you on the spot the last time we talked and asked you to share the last thing you punned in a text. Gonna hit you with it one more time...

Don't want none unless you got puns hun.

At what point in your career did you find the confidence to really take charge and become the woman you are today?

Well directing was certainly a turning point, and required the confidence to believe I deserved to be in that position. I think I felt I had put in the work, and was excited by the possibility of doing something that scared me.

What's the best advice you've ever been given? Or your favorite piece of #realtalk?

Cheesy and cliched, but "The only person standing in your way is you."

What song do you sing in the shower when you’ve had a bad day?

"Dreams" by Fleetwood Mac.

Photo Credit: @davisfactor

Hair & Makeup: @SmashboxCosmetics @TheGlamApp @TheOuai