(AmySedarisRocks.com): What did you think of the movie?
Sedaris: I thought everyone was really good, and I couldn't believe the incredible acting. It looked great, too. I loved the direction. I love depressing shit! Because I was involved in the movie, I knew too much. Being in the movie you are watching can spoil the whole thing. It's hard to watch yourself and remember so much of what you did fifteen minutes before you shot the scene.
you read the novel by Stewart O'Nan on which the movie is based?
I haven't read the book, but I will now.
that you're known for your comedy, you seem like an unorthodox choice
for such a bleak, serious drama. How were you cast?
met with the director, David Gordon Green and I auditioned. I was
very surprised that he asked to see me.
Gordon Green actually sought you out?
they called and asked me to audition.
just seems so surprising. Do you know what made Green think to call
you and ask you to come in?
I don't know. I guess that would be a question for him*.
I was surprised by that, too. I have no idea. I guess I was kind
of surprised because I don't normally get called to do stuff like
is certainly the most serious role you've done in television or
film to date. Did you find it difficult?
was hard not to find the humor in it. My instincts are to do just
that. I still didn't have to cry or fight the rapist off of me,
but I did get to find the humor in it when I saw the movie. Me trying
to be serious or somewhat real on screen is funny to me.
when you were filming the movie, did you just pretend that you were
doing a Lifetime movie or something?
I just didn't have as much fun. When you're in the moment, and you're
there, and you're around stuff--if you're an improviser--you just
want to go with it, and play around, and make fun of stuff, and
laugh. But the energy wasn't like that. Sometimes it was like that
on the set, and I could [joke around] knowing they weren't going
to shoot it, but you just don't play in that mindset. You don't
go on set trying to find the humor in everything. It's just a different
reality. As far as energy on the set, the people would listen to
sad music and they'd be trying to stay in character.
often say in interviews that you don't think you have the chops
to do serious drama, but I think Snow Angels proves not only that
you do, but that you're also really quite adept at it. Would do
you do a part like this again?
if I could be naked.
said, if you were asked to do a part like this again, would you
seriously not do it?
would all depend on what it was. Like I said, in this movie it's
not like I had to be incredibly serious. It wasn't, like, so dramatic
and so hard. I was still kind of the comic relief in it. But I don't
I guess it would depend on what it was. I know what I
can do and can't do. If it was something where I was going to have
this huge dramatic scene--that's not something that I enjoy doing,
so I would know not to get involved in it. I have no desire to do
that in a movie. Those are the movies that I like to go see, but
that's because I can't do that. And when people say, "Oh, you
can take lessons and you can learn," it's like, I don't even
want to go there. I mean, I'm not saying that I wouldn't go there
in my apartment if I was with somebody, but I don't want to do it
on camera. Sometimes that can feel queer to me. That's too real.
That's why I love people who can do it.
though Barb provides some comic relief towards the beginning of
the film, Snow Angels definitely relies on your dramatic
skills more than your comedic skills. Did you approach this differently
than when you do comedy roles?
should actually approach them the same way.
comedy is based in reality. If people are dead serious and the situation
is funny, you're going to laugh. But if you're going to yuk it up
and add more to it, it kind of bends it a little bit and it's not
as funny. It's funnier when you take it seriously. With Jerri Blank
[in Strangers With Candy], for example: Even though we got
sillier as the seasons went on, we still tried to approach it seriously.
Jerri was a character being serious, but sometimes I would go overboard--but
it would always just look geeky that way.
Snow Angels, how much room did you have to improvise and
how much of your role was strictly following the script?
was scripted. I went off a little bit, but not too much.
more difficult: Having to approach a character realistically or
being completely over the top?
like to go over the top, and work with a director to pull it back.
I need to do both.
when you are playing a character that's kind of normal--not over
the top, like Jerri Blank--and you don't necessarily have anything
to hide behind, do you find it difficult?
like to have a hook
So I can feel like I can play around more.
Like a prop. Sometimes a prop can turn you into a whole different
character. You just go with it. Sometimes I just need to something
to convince me that I'm playing. It's like playing. That's what
I like to do.
memorable moments from the set of Snow Angels? Also, were
there any dicey moments running down that snowy hill?
was a pain the ass, literally. The restaurant was gross. It was
really dirty. Kate Beckinsale had never used a time card machine
before, which I thought that was interesting.
while I have you on the phone, I just thought of another question
ad. How did that happen?
just called my agent. They put together something based on the house
rabbit chapter in I Like You,
and they just said they had an idea and wanted to know if I'd be
interested. It was for their offices. It wasn't for TV or anything
like that. It was like, they were having some big meeting, and they
wanted to do something for their employees. I don't know anything
about Microsoft Word, but their idea wasn't bad, and Paul Dinello
and I kind of reworked some stuff in it. Paul got to direct it and
creatively get involved, and we hired our own team, so it was a
fun, creative thing to do.
I can't get enough of it. It is so cute!
paid really well, and it was an opportunity, and I mean, I love
shit like that. I would love to do commercials and things like that.
I think they're fun--as long as you have control. Because you think
they're fun, and then you get there and their idea is queer or they
want you to do something stupid. But if I could have creative input
like that, I would do a lot more--If they guaranteed that I could
have a little bit of control.
what I was wondering, because it looked like Microsoft gave you
total creative freedom over everything.
they were great. They never said anything to us.
I can't get enough of it. The novelty never wears off. I laugh so
hard every time I see that rabbit ring the bell, and then start
pounding on the keyboard at lightning speed!
know! My God. It's so funny! It was so funny.
the rabbit that peers up behind your shoulder and then goes back
down really slowly--I love that.
that was a fun one. They're so silly, those bunnies. Mary Cotter,
the House Rabbit Society lady, was manipulating all the bunnies
and doing all that stuff, because Paul just thought that they would
do everything that he wanted them to do. I go, "Paul, how long
have you known me?! Rabbits can't do that!" First of all, they're
going to freak out about being somewhere else. Dusty
(Amy's rabbit who appears in the ad) wouldn't do her
oatmeal trick. She does it all the time, and she didn't do it.
her oatmeal trick?
takes the lid off of the oatmeal container and she throws it. She
does it with this ceramic dish that I have, too. And she was supposed
to take that lid off when she's eating the jimmies, and throw it
across the room like she always does, and she did not do it.
see, she wasn't in her element.
she didn't feel comfortable enough. Rabbits are prey animals, so
home is very important. They have to know where they're at.
asked by New
York Magazine how he decided to cast Amy in Snow Angels,
director David Gordon Green said, "Wed auditioned a lot
of women for the role, and they were coming in acting like they
were Flo from Alice, that whole Kiss my grits
thing. Maybe thats how Id written it on the page, so
I can see how it might be interpreted as such. But it wasnt
right. Finally, my casting director said, You know what? Youre
not finding who you like, and you dont know what you want.
Thats one of those interesting points you get to as a director
every now and then. They said, Lets open it up, and
lets not be so specific about who were calling in. Lets
just call in people like Amy Sedaris. And suddenly I thought,
Why dont we just give it to Amy Sedaris? Thats exactly
who should play the part."