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Interview: Lisa Ann Walter on Infusing Melissa Schemmenti with Authenticity in ‘Abbott Elementary’

There are few personalities stronger in the fictional world of Abbott Elementary than Melissa Schemmenti. Played memorably by actress Lisa Ann Walter, Melissa is a rough-and-tumble Sicilian who is fiercely loyal to those she likes and not shy about calling out those who piss her off inside and outside of the classroom.

Awards Buzz spoke with Walter about some new developments for Melissa in season three and the chance to work with her exceptional costars. Watch the video above to hear about how she continues to inject pieces of her own life and upbringing into the character.

Lisa Ann Walter is eligible for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series at this year’s Emmy Awards.Seasons one through three of Abbott Elementary are available to stream on Hulu, with season four set to return this fall on ABC.


  • Abe Friedtanzer

    Abe Friedtanzer is a film and TV enthusiast who spent most of the past fifteen years in New York City. He has been the editor of and since 2007, and has been predicting the Oscars, Emmys, Golden Globes, and SAG Awards since he was allowed to stay up late enough to watch them.

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