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Kristen Schaal talks sex and fame

Oh hey guys! Stalk Mel here.

by gezyka » Thu Oct 29, 2009 3:17 pm


Kristen Schaal talks sex and fame
By Mark de la Vina
for the Mercury News
Posted: 10/29/2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Updated: 10/29/2009 09:57:06 AM PDT

You can't miss Kristen Schaal.

With an infectious laugh, those big, trusting eyes and a voice that often swerves toward exuberance, Schaal stands out — whether in a small role in the movie "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant" or as the women's correspondent for "The Daily Show."

Though she is best known as obsessive, unnerving fangirl Mel from HBO's "The Flight of the Conchords," Schaal is a likable stage performer who uses her veneer of innocent affability in a bait-and-switch style of stand-up informed by the likes of Andy Kaufman. She visits the Punch Line Comedy Club in San Francisco next Thursday through Nov. 7.

Schaal spoke by phone about her upcoming "incredibly filthy" tome on sex, how no film role is too small and why she needs to take a page from "Bonanza" star Dan "Hoss" Blocker's book on fan engagement.

Q You were recently filming your role in "Dinner With Schmucks," the comedy starring Paul Rudd and Steve Carell.

A Yes and no. It was telephone acting. I was trying to chat on the phone with Paul Rudd. I was really nervous, because I had never met him before. Over the phone, I never feel confident, so I wish I would have said that I am way more charming in person. I'm playing Paul Rudd's assistant, so it's another assistant role. That's my expertise.

Q You have often landed those kinds of roles — like the switchboard operator in "Mad Men." I'm sure that's preferable to when you first moved to New York as a young performer and your career hadn't quite taken off.

A I'm not complaining about the roles. I really enjoy them. There's no small part. That's what my mom told me. She probably got that from Oprah. She loves Oprah.

Q I keep reading about a book you're working on described as both a collection of short stories and a romance novel. Which is it?

A It's a collection of short stories. It's sort of taking on a unique form. I'm cowriting it with my boyfriend, who works on "The Daily Show" — Rich Blomquist.

If you've read (Jon Stewart's) "America (The Book)" (which Blomquist cowrote), it's a collage of different kinds of styles. I wouldn't say it's a self-help book. It is, and it isn't. It's an essay here, a letter there. A collection. It's about sex and it's incredibly filthy and raunchy and has been fun to write.

Q When you first wanted to pitch the book, you considered writing this under pseudonyms but realized you couldn't sell it if you didn't identify yourselves. Was there trepidation because readers would assume you did the raunchy things you wrote about?

A There still is. He's a little more nervous about his parents reading it. I realized this weekend as we were writing that this might hurt us from becoming teachers. Well, it is a really dirty book, so it was just a funny revelation. It's a funny book, it's been fun to write and it's also very graphic.

Those graphic parts are my favorite things to read in all of the Harlequin romance novels, so I just wanted to put in as much of that as I can. It's called "The Sexy Book of Sexy Sex."

Q You've said that you don't think your comedy comes from a place of being brave, but from a lack of self-awareness or a place of not really understanding how people judge you. But surely that's changed as people recognize you from "Conchords" or "The Daily Show."

A When "The Flight of the Conchords" came out, I became aware that there are people in the audience who now know who I am. I used to really love doing material about made-up stuff about me, like at my office job, which I could because nobody knew any different. I had different monologues that I had to drop because no one buys it any more. So I've had to come at my material from a different angle.

Q Does that throw you off? How do you react to people recognizing you or calling you Mel?

A It first happened when I was onstage in Chicago and someone yelled out, "I love you, Mel" when I was in the middle of my bit. I was like: "That's not my name." It doesn't really happen during performances. It happens on the street pretty much every day. It depends on what mood I'm in.

If I'm drunk, we're going to take pictures and we're going to really chat, but if we're not drunk, and if you yell my character's name and we didn't make eye contact, I just hurry up on my way. I feel like if you yell my character's name, I have a pass to not say "hello." But then my mom said she thought this is not right. She was like — what's the fat guy's name from Bonanza?

Q You mean Hoss?

A She was like, "If I was on the street and I saw Hoss and I yelled 'Hoss!' and he kept walking, I would be heartbroken." So she was comparing me to Hoss. She didn't think that was right. Mel is such an abrasive character, so you don't want to be labeled her every day.

Q So your mother expects you to model your career after Dan Blocker's?

A My mother loved Hoss. It was her crush as a girl, and she even wrote him a fan letter and he sent her a head shot. Maybe I'm just ungrateful. Not ungrateful. I'm just shy.

Kristen Schaal

With: Kurt Braunohler and Matt Morales
When: 8 p.m. next Thursday-Nov. 7, 10 p.m. Nov. 6-7
Where: Punch Line Comedy Club, 444 Battery St., San Francisco
Tickets: $20-$22.50; www.punchlinecomedy

Source: http://www.mercurynews.com/music/ci_13652468

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gezyka
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by chrissycubana » Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:30 pm

i think this belongs here:

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i cannot WAIT to read her book!!! ;D




(i know it's a re-tweet, but still! [*lunchboxes ;) ])
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"If there's one thing I can't stand, it's plagiarism."

"Suddenly, playing with yourself is a scholarly pursuit."
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by chrissycubana » Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:34 pm

that reminds me...

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is also relevant!
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"If there's one thing I can't stand, it's plagiarism."

"Suddenly, playing with yourself is a scholarly pursuit."
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chrissycubana
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