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As She Approaches 70, Annie Potts Is Done Playing by Anyone Else’s Rules

Updated: Aug 28, 2022

The actor, best known for her roles in Designing Women and Ghostbusters, was dealing with a “career slump” when she was offered the role of Meemaw on Young Sheldon. Here, she opens up about her storied career and what she’s learned along the way.

By Jessica Radloff March 31, 2022

Annie Potts may not realize it, but a chat with her is like reading Chicken Soup for the Soul. In her almost 70 years on earth, she’s picked up enough life lessons to turn into several self-help books and doesn’t mind sharing her wisdom. Not in a demanding “Honey, you need to do this” way, but with the kind of soft-spoken insights that creep up on you later, when you realize the gift you’ve been given.

On this particular morning the actor, best known for playing Mary Jo Shively in Designing Women, an ’80s sitcom too ahead of its time, is Zooming with me from her home in Los Angeles when I comment that we’ve both embraced the pinstripe shirt. “I’ve got 10,000 stripes going on,” she says with a laugh. “I now believe in a design theory that says everything goes with everything and it doesn’t really matter. I like it.” Born in Nashville and raised in Kentucky, the Stephens College grad says acting was the only thing she wanted to do growing up. “There was no plan B. Nothing. I have no other skills. Luckily that worked out.”

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