Anne Hathaway’s First Role Was An Underrated TV Series With Jesse Eisenberg That Can’t Be Watched Anywhere

By Rick Gonzales | Published

anne hathaway

Anne Hathaway has come a long way since her 2001 feature film debut in Disney’s The Princess Diaries. Since that time, Hathaway has won an Academy Award, a British Academy Film Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Primetime Emmy Award.

But did you know that Hathaway’s career didn’t start with her Disney film? She actually made her onscreen debut in a little-known, yet underrated, television series called Get Real. And her co-star was Jesse Eisenberg, who was making his onscreen debut as well.

Anne Hathaway Gets Real

Anne Hathaway’s introduction to Hollywood came in 1999 with the comedy-drama, Get Real. The series, created by Clyde Phillips (Parker Lewis Can’t Lose), tells the story of the Green Family, a dysfunctional bunch consisting of Mitch and Mary Green and their three children, Meghan, Cameron, and Kenny.

Mitch and Mary became parents first while they were teenagers and life for them now has become stagnant. Jon Tenney played Mitch and Debrah Farentino played Mary.

Get Real debuted in 1999 with Anne Hathaway and Jesse Eisenberg as castmembers.

Anne Hathaway plays Meghan, a go-getter who has been nominated for class valedictorian and who also has been accepted to UC Berkeley. While things look to be going well for Meghan, she decides to shock her parents by telling them she no longer wants to go to college.

Eric Christian Anderson plays her slacker brother Cameron. He does his mother no favors by not only being a slacker but also by bringing home girls to stay the night with him.

Anne Hathaway
Anne Hathaway and Jesse Eisenberg in Get Real

In his onscreen debut, Jesse Eisenberg plays the youngest, Kenny Green. Kenny is immediately an awkward sight and often finds himself the target of bullies at school. Christina Pickles also stars as Elizabeth, Mary’s mother. Elizabeth also lives at the Green residence, finding a room there after her husband passed away.

Get Real lasted only one season and 22 episodes on Fox. It was slated for 24, but the network canceled the series before the final two episodes could air. The series was actually fairly well-received critically but was set up opposite The West Wing and it struggled to find an audience. As the first season progressed, its ratings continued to tumble, forcing the network to revoke Get Real’s privileges.

Get Real’s first season was canceled before the entire run of episodes could air

As for Anne Hathaway, she quickly showed signs of the actress she would eventually become. She handled the role well, often looking into the camera and delivering sarcastic lines to the television audience. This style was something that Phillips loved to employ as he used it in a prior series of his, Parker Lewis Can’t Lose.

Life Gets Really Real for Anne Hathaway

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The cancelation of Get Real did not deter Anne Hathaway from her desire to be a full-time actress. She showed her grit when she endured her audition for The Princess Diaries during a 26-hour Los Angeles layover.

Juliette Lewis was initially offered the part, which she turned down, opening the door for Hathaway to walk through. She did though it wasn’t easy. Not only did Hathaway have to go up against Lewis, but she also went up against other notables such as Reese Witherspoon, Kirsten Dunst, Alicia Silverstone, Jessica Biel, Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Brittany Murphy, and Katie Holmes.

Anne Hathaway would eventually land the lead in The Princess Diaries

Apparently, nerves got the best of Anne Hathaway during her audition with director Gary Marshall to the point where she fell out of her chair. That simple, yet clumsy, act somehow impressed Marshall to where he hired her to play Mia Thermopolis.  The Princess Diaries was just the beginning and Hathaway would reprise her role as Mia three years later.

Anne Hathaway appeared in a number of family films before venturing into more mature material with 2005’s Brokeback Mountain. In 2006 she played Andy Sachs opposite the devious Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada and her career was off and running. She would then see her career alternate between fun and funny films to the more dramatic.

She Is Still Considered One Of Hollywood’s Premiere Actresses

2012 was a nice year for Anne Hathaway as she first got a starring role in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises as Catwoman/Selina Kyle before taking on the role of Fatine in Les Misérables. It was this role as the prostitute dying of tuberculosis that brought her much attention, taking home the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Anne Hathaway would reunite with Nolan two years later for Interstellar opposite Matthew McConaughey as a researcher in outer space looking for a new planet for humans after Earth becomes uninhabitable.

The 40-year-old Anne Hathaway has continued to do stellar work. She was last seen in two features; Eileen and She Came to Me and has numerous projects she is working on. It was just announced that she will be starring in a Netflix original, Eclipse Convergence. Unfortunately, the one project fans will not be able to see is her very first one, Get Real.