Nia Vardalos My Big Fat Greek
Steven Taylor for Variety

Writer-actress Nia Vardalos charmed audiences in 2002 with surprise hit “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” and now she’s back with older and wiser life lessons in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2,” due out from Universal on March 25. In the new film, she tackles issues concerning her large and eccentric Greek family that also touch her fans: mothering a teenager, finding time for one’s spouse, and dealing with aging parents.

You are tuned into what your fans are dealing with now, 14 years later.

Women are so many things. We’re sisters, mothers, wives. There are so many things we encompass. I wanted to write a movie for us too.

There are a lot of strong women in the film.

The dearth of female roles is disgusting. Instead of whining about it, I wrote the female roles with a lot of strength and depth — and knowing that Andrea Martin and Lainie Kazan could hit it out of the park. Women have to write for each other; we have to hire each other.

Do you see change ahead?

My [young] daughter walked out of “The Boxtrolls” and told the manager it was because there weren’t enough female characters in it. We got our money back and spent it on candy. There’s a whole generation coming up that will demand change.

Michael Constantine, who’s 88, is a real treat in the sequel.

John Corbett called me before we started shooting and asked, “How are Michael Constantine and Lainie Kazan doing?” We got on set, and they were partying. John’s like, “I think we have to worry about ourselves.”

The movie feels like revisiting family.

Someone said to me that watching the trailer was like getting a warm hug from your family. I wish I had said that.

What’s next?

I am doing a series for Epix next year, “Graves,” in which I get to play a well-written role, written by a man.

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