Posts Tagged ‘Parks and Rec’

Metro Canada: Aubrey Plaza is all about the brains in zom-com Life After Beth

zombieBy Richard Crouse – Metro Canada

Aubrey Plaza, star of the new zombie rom com Life After Beth, is a liar.

When asked if it is possible to overthink her approach to a character she says, “I’m not very smart to begin with so I can’t overthink anything. If I’m thinking about something, that’s a big deal for me.”

Liar, liar, pants on fire.

Actually, the New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts graduate, best known as April Ludgate on Parks and Recreation, is a secret smarty-pants with a well thought out career path.

“Most scripts I read feel wrong to me just because they’re not good,” she says. “I tend to try and do things that are scary to me because otherwise I’ll just get offered the same thing over and over again, and who wants to see that… except for everyone.”

Life After Beth offered up something different and a little scary. Plaza says the story of Zack (Dane DeHaan) and his recently deceased girlfriend Beth (Plaza) who refuses to stay dead is a metaphor “for a break up and how when you break up with someone it’s like they die. Then you try to get back together with them and you only remember the good things. Or you turn that person into a monster. There’s all kinds of ways you can look at the movie.”

The thirty-year-old actress says, “I like make-believe which is why I like movies and like making them and making people believe that I am good at that,” adding that she always had “grand delusions” of a career in film.

“I had really weird taste when I was little,” she says. “I was really into Judy Garland and Bette Midler. I had a sophisticated gay man’s taste at an early age.”

Plaza was also obsessed with Saturday Night Live, particularly with the female cast members like Molly Shannon, Tina Fey and her current Parks and Rec co-star Amy Poehler, a person she now calls a “close friend” and the nicest and funniest person in the room. “She is like a glowing orb of light.”

Her take on Poehler is believable, but when asked about her movie’s message, she lies again.

“I want people to see zombies in a whole new light and think before they shoot them in the brains,” she says. “If the zombie apocalypse happens I want the world to remember, ‘These were humans at one point…’ No, I think they should just shoot them. Immediately.”

How Jason Ritter got into the mindset of a suicidal man for About Alex

ritterBy Richard Crouse – Metro Canada

Jason Ritter, son of the late John Ritter and star of the new film About Alex, doesn’t call himself a method actor, but he used some tricks to prepare for his latest role.

“There are certain times when I try to help myself get into a mindset by trying to create circumstances around me that mimic certain feelings,” said the 34-year-old actor.

The action in About Alex begins with the drained looking titular character (Ritter), feeling cut off from his closest friends, sending a farewell tweet before attempting suicide.

“I felt like Alex might have spent some sleepless nights, haunted and alone, so I spent a lot of time just wandering around my house. I made myself coffees and tried to stay up all night. Basically not giving my brain a chance to rest. It was just about transferring that over into a more extreme version, helping me get into a mindset of someone who doesn’t see any other solution and who wants the pain to end.”

The actor, who has a recurring role on the show Parenthood, says, “it would have felt a little bit strange to me if I had gotten a great night sleep, woken up, had a big breakfast and then had to jump into the scene. I guess I don’t trust myself enough to be able to jump straight into something that heavy.”

The movie takes on a Big Chill vibe as Alex’s best friends — played by Parks and Rec’s Aubrey Plaza, Maggie Grace of Lost, Max Minghella, Non-Stop’s Nate Parker and The New Girl’s Max Greenfield ­— gather at an upstate New York home to support him.

“I basically fell in love with every single one of the actors there,” says Ritter, who used the remote shooting location as another chance to get into his character’s head.

“We all really created friendships on that set but then they would all go away every weekend,” he says. “They’d go back to the city and see family and friends or hangout and I would just stay up there and really feel their absence. It was like a microcosm of what it would feel like to be Alex. He feels, even though it’s not true, that he’s been abandoned by his close friends.”

That desertion, in part, comes from social media. Alex’s cries for help via twitter “get lost in the sea of tweets,” so Ritter hopes people walk away from the film, “feeling like, ‘You know who I should call right now? This person.’ Call, don’t tweet.”