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Nava Mau starred in this hit TV show before Baby Reindeer

Nava Mau starred in this hit TV show before Baby Reindeer

If you love her in Baby Reindeer, you'll love her previous work.

Yes, it may have come out almost a month ago, but Richard Gadd's Baby Reindeer is still all we can think about — especially that heartbreaking, understated performance from breakout star Nava Mau.

Mau, a Latina trans actress, plays Teri in the show. Teri, an American therapist, dates Donny in the show and although she initially seems to be a good influence and a voice of reason for Donny. However, he falls back into bad habits and eventually leaves Teri on the tube before sinking back into unhealthy patterns with Martha.

Nava Mau starred in this hit TV show before Baby Reindeer

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For Mau, Teri felt eerily close to home. “I had to work pretty hard to find the differentiating line between me and Teri,” she told us at GLAMOUR recently. “I related to her so much, and I deeply understood the dynamic between her and Donny, it was very familiar to me, from my own life, and from the people I know.”

While Baby Reindeer is Mau's breakout role, she did appear in another groundbreaking show as a fascinating trans woman. Back in 2021, she landed her first big role as Ana in HBO's Genera+ion.

Nava Mau played Ana in Genera+ion

Genera+ion followed a group of American high schoolers in California as they navigated relationships, sexuality and growing up in the modern age. Following in the footsteps of shows like Euphoria and Sex Education, the show tackled complex identity issues with a light, smart touch.

As Ana, Mau portrayed the transgender aunt of Greta, who had a tendency to get a little too involved in her neice's friendships and relationships.

Nava Mau starred in this hit TV show before Baby Reindeer

Once again, for Mau, playing Ana was another important chance to explore her own journey. In fact, that's the only reason why she accepted the job.

“I only ever want to perform a character that I feel connected to in my heart, and I have to let that lead me,” she told us. “So if that means that, I actually don't work that often, and this is the end of the story for for my acting career, then I will have done enough, because I've done what my heart needed to do. If that has created a sense of representation of queer characters, that are nuanced and genuine, then I feel like it's it's really because it comes from the heart.”

Fans of the show were, unsurprisingly, blown away by Mau's performance. She “makes me die of laughter every time she’s on screen” one fan wrote on Twitter.

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Wrote another, “I'm so loving Nava Mau on Genera+ion. It's so refreshing to see her character presented so naturally, honestly, humanly, beautifully.”

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What else has Nava Mau appeared in?

Although Baby Reindeer and Genera+ion have been two of Nava Mau's biggest projects to date, she has also appeared in a number of groundbreaking short films. Her first, Waking Hour, which she also produced and directed, was released in 2019.

Similarly to Baby Reindeer, the short film tackles the question of what it's like to date as a trans woman. “Ultimately, I hope that new message for future generations is that trans people are not dangerous, and there's nothing to fear,” said Mau of her intentions behind the short. “When it comes to dating, we'll be able to build relationships – however fleeting they may be – from a place of understanding, openness and consent.”

Mau went on to act in Feminina, Sam's Town and Work, three more shorts. Her next short film, All the Worlds But One is due to premiere in Maryland this week.

It's clear that for Mau, acting is all about spreading awareness and sharing her own experiences of the world — she's more interested in the art than the fame that comes with it.

“I'm so glad that my introduction to the world of film was through independent film and through projects that I had a lot of agency over, because it showed me why we do this," she previously told Elle. "It's about telling stories that come from the heart and that can reach other people's hearts. So when I finally got it together to create this short film, it…I don't know how to explain it. I had never really been able to see myself fully. I got to fall in love with myself in a new way, and I got to fall in love with this art form. And I have yet to fall out of love.” .