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Ozark's Jessica Frances Dukes On Working With Jason Bateman And Laura Linney - Exclusive

Netflix's "Ozark" recently returned for the first part of its fourth season, and no one was more excited about that than actor Jessica Frances Dukes. Dukes plays FBI agent and new mom Maya Miller in the series, and Season 4 Part 1 gave her an extremely tense and mildly terrifying storyline. 

While "Ozark" follows Marty and Wendy Byrde (Jason Bateman and Laura Linney) and their descent into the drug trade, a complex cast of characters has quickly become woven into the story. Hot on the trail of the Byrdes' boss Omar Navarro, Miller attempts to take down the show's infamous cartel boss while also raising a family at home. It goes without saying that the latest episodes of "Ozark" are intense, and the show's talented cast continue to keep us enthralled every episode.

Looper sat down with Jessica Frances Dukes to find out what it was like working so closely with Jason Bateman and Laura Linney on "Ozark" Season 4 Part 1.

Having no cool around Laura Linney

Understandably, joining Netflix's "Ozark" was pretty much a dream job for Jessica Frances Dukes, who previously appeared on "Jessica Jones." "I walked on the first day and I was with Laura Linney, and [she] is everything to any actress coming up. She's just epic," Dukes told Looper. "To have her on the very first day ... it was absolutely magical. I've learned so much from both Jason [Bateman] and Laura and Julia [Garner] and the whole cast."

In fact, working with Linney was particularly excited for Dukes, as she revealed, "Laura is ... a queen and it's just epic. I learned so much from working with her." And just like the rest of us would, Dukes found it impossible to keep her cool around the iconic actor. "Every time I saw her, I was like, 'I'm going to not be weird next time. I swear, I won't be weird. But you're Laura Linney. I'm going to be weird.' She's Laura Linney." 

Dukes explained, "There is no word in the dictionary. Every actor that's in this business, especially if you come from theater, that's the goal, to be able to trick the mind. There's so many times that I talk about Laura and I'm like, 'Did you see that [movie]? You know she was in that?' And they're like, 'No she wasn't.' You forget every time she's on screen." Season 4 Part 1 of "Ozark" is no exception, and continues to be the perfect vehicle for Linney's unmatched talents.

Jason Bateman is 'nuts'

As well as getting to act opposite Laura Linney, Jessica Frances Dukes also has the pleasure of working with Jason Bateman, who straddles the worlds of comedy and drama so seamlessly. "Jason's nuts and I love everything about him," Dukes told Looper. "We're both Capricorns. We've all been watching Jason for so long, and you don't know what you're going to get when you walk on the set." 

Unsurprisingly, Bateman was just as fun offscreen as he is onscreen. "He is this ball of joy on this dark show, and he's constantly throwing out jokes, but he is also smart," she explained. "He has so many wonderful thoughts and input and this and that. I love the fact that he never was too busy to engage or answer a question or to have a conversation. It wasn't just work."

Summing up her time on Season 4 of "Ozark," Dukes said, "I went to set even when I wasn't called because I wanted to absorb as much as I could from these people. It was magical."

"Ozark" Season 4 Part 1 is now streaming exclusively on Netflix.