The limited 10-episode series is directed by True Detective, Beasts of No Nation, and newly confirmed Bond 25 director Cary Fukunaga. Additionally, Stone also played as its executive producer.
"To be there from the very beginning, at the ground level, was not something that I'd really experienced before. It made me very excited to talk to people about the seed of an idea and develop it from the beginning," she said, adding that she considered it as a beautiful process.
When the show was undergoing its planning stages, the La La Land actress met with its co-creators Patrick Somerville and Fukunaga, who were still imagining what kind of make-believe worlds they would put in the show.
The Dark Comedy Show
In the show, she plays Annie Lansberg, a woman who is on board a pharmaceutical drug trial that is envisioned to replace therapy.
Maniac is loosely based on a Norwegian show of the same name but in the original show, there was no character like the one Stone portrays. However, Fukunaga was hell-bent on having her on board.
Furthermore, he claimed that when producer Michael Sugar asked him who he wanted to cast as part of the show, the first celebrity he said was the Easy A star.
Aside from giving the audience amazing visuals, the show also scrutinizes family bond, mental illness, and drug dependency.
"I think the idea of delusions and opening up the genre pallet even wider to do something with a more humorous tone, all of that made it attractive," stated Fukunaga.
Emma Stone's Elf Character
In Maniac, Stone co-starred with Jonah Hill. The actor plays Owen Milgrim, who went through a psychotic break. The two are seen having different hallucinations on the drugs administered by the company including Hill portraying a gangster with long hair, the two playing a couple, and Stone as an elf.
Notably, Fukunaga said in an interview that Stone did not like elves. This inspired him to make the episode.
Stone said that she absolutely loved the element of the elf who was so proud of being part human and tried to cut her ears off. She thought it was fun to be aware of the character's personal bad experience.
However, when reminded of the director's statement, she stated that she just does not want to play as an elf because she does not think that it is in her skill set despite liking fantasy.