January 21, 2018 07:02 PM

Allison Janney had a very different career in mind when she was younger.

The I, Tonya actress revealed on the E! red carpet ahead of Sunday’s Screen Actor’s Guild Awards that she originally wanted to pursue figure skating — just like Tonya Harding. She’s nominated for best supporting actress for playing Harding’s mother, LaVona Golden, in the film.

“That was my first dream, to be a figure skater. I wasn’t very good,” Janney, 58, said. “I was actually very graceful but it’s really an acrobatic sport. I’m 6 feet tall. I maybe could’ve been an ice dancer, but I could maybe do two double jumps, but that’s it. You have to be compact and small and a gymnast almost. It just wasn’t my thing. That’s the short answer.”

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But Janney did end up being tied to figure skating thanks to her role as Tonya Harding’s mother in I, Tonya. The nominee — who already picked up a Golden Globe and Critic’s Choice Award for her performance — said that she was nervous to play a real-life person.

Allison Janney as LaVona Golden and LaVona Golden
Neon; Steve Slocum/AP/REX/Shutterstock

“When I was working on this role, we couldn’t find the real Tonya’s mother,” she said. “That let me off the hook, because I was nervous to play a real-life person, someone you’d have to do an imitation of. I felt like I could create who I wanted her to be and who she was to me.”

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The 24th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards are broadcast live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on both TNT and TBS starting at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday and catch PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly and TNT’s live red carpet show starting at 5:30 p.m. on PeopleTV — found on your favorite streaming devices.

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