AP: How does this award help the cause?
Close: It's huge. You don't see that many things about mental illness. ... That shows that mental illness is not a comfortable thing for people to talk about, and the fact that they are giving me this award and my family — my sister, two of her children and my daughter are going to come up with me — because I think the image of a family together surrounding and supporting their members who have mental illness, there's no words for it. That's where I'm so moved and honored by this recognition and excited, actually, that we can put that image on television.
AP: What's next for you?
Close: I'm very excited. I'm going to be doing, starting in February, a movie with Nick Nolte. We play kind of a rock 'n' roll couple. He's an iconic rock 'n' roll guy, singer-songwriter out of the Troubadour/Laurel Canyon tradition ... that whole incredible generation of singer-songwriters, and he's of that ilk, and I've stuck with him through thick and thin, and I won't tell you the plotline, but I was very, very moved by the story. I think it's timely and really well written. I think it's going to be a lot of fun and it will have great music in it.
AP: What's it called?
Close: 'Always on My Mind.'
AP Entertainment Writer Sandy Cohen is on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/APSandy .