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Glenn Close didn't know much about 'Woman in the House' cameo, but did have a specific request

The mystery woman in Seat 2A has big Cruella de Vil energy.

By Josh Weiss
The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window 101 PRESS

Who exactly was the mystery woman sitting in Seat 2A in the final episode of The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window? Don't ask Glenn Close, because she doesn't have all the answers either! "Everyone else has a story, except for this mystery woman," she said while speaking to Entertainment Weekly. "Her backstory is a mystery even to me."

In fact, the actress' decision to take on the surprise cameo was a last-minute development. "They approached me out of the blue. And I was out in L.A., which is kind of rare," Close recalled. "I had enough time in my schedule to do it. So I said, 'Why not? Sounds like fun.'" The opportunity to work with star Kristen Bell was just too good to pass up, but Close specified that she'd only agree to take on the gig if her character could "have gloves and look fabulous." The request was granted and Close even got to keep the costume once the shoot was over.

The unnamed woman — who barely has a minute of total screen-time — sits next to Anna (Bell) on a flight to New York. She's allegedly traveling to the Big Apple on "business," but her suspicious tone and frosty attitude — coupled with a few ominous notes on the soundtrack — allude to something out of the ordinary. When pitched the role, Close only knew two things for certain: 1) that she was "glamorous" and 2) that she was caught up in "something sinister." She continued: "My imagination could go crazy, but I think they wanted it to seem a little sinister and [for her to be] short and very succinct. She didn't want to fall into a conversation at all."

During a separate interview with EW, showrunners/executive producers Rachel Ramras, Hugh Davidson, and Larry Dorf admitted that Close was on the top of their casting wishlist due to her penchant for portraying dangerous women like Alex Forrest (Fatal Attraction), Teddy Barnes (Jagged Edge), and Cruella de Vil (101 Dalmatians).

"I don't know if I had heard that," Close said when asked if that rationale was made apparent to her. "But certainly, if I come on screen with a certain attitude, people always expect me to be the bad one. There's a lot of baggage that [comes] if I act in a certain way, where people say, 'Uh oh, something bad's gonna happen.' I played women that people think are truly evil. But for me, it's only Cruella who's truly evil."

Several hours after her icy introduction to Miss 2A, Anna gets up to use the restroom and discovers the woman's bloodied corpse in the cramped lavatory. When she tries to show a flight attendant (Community's Jim Rash), however, the body seems to have vanished into thin air. What's more: the flight attendant states that no one was sitting in 2A. Our protagonist might have been able to chalk it up to exhaustion and a travel-sized bottle of vodka if not for the mystery woman's compact mirror wedged in the seat. While billed as a miniseries, The Woman in the House now has room to maneuver itself into a second season if Netflix decides to hand down a renewal.

All eight episodes of The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window are now streaming on Netflix.