You probably recognize the adorable Alison Brie from her TV roles on Mad Men and Community, but the star was at the Sundance Film Festival this year to promote her new movie Save the Date. We sat down with the actress to talk about the film and her other wedding movie, The Five-Year Engagement. Though Brie kept mum about what we can expect from season five of Mad Men, she did give us an idea of how Community could come to an end, should this be the final season.
Each year there seems to be a reoccurring theme that pops up in films at the Sundance Film Festival. 2011 was all about religious fanatics, and 2012 seems to have been heavily influenced by ‘Bridesmaids.’ ‘Save the Date’ is one of the many great R-rated female-centric comedic dramas at Sundance this year. Lizzy Caplan stars as an aspiring artist who has to take life’s changes in small steps. As if moving in with her boyfriend wasn’t traumatic enough for her, when he proposes to her in front of a large crowd she freaks out and ends the relationship right there. Alison Brie plays her sister, the encouraging and supporting figure in her life. Halfway through the festival, Alison sat down with me to talk about ‘Save the Date’ and the uncertain fate of her network series ‘Community.’
HDD – Luke Hickman: So how has all the media been?
Alison Brie: I love the movie and I forgot how fun it was going to be to talk about it. We haven’t been talking about it every day since we shot it – it’s not like we call each other on the weekend and talk about it. (laughs)
HDD: When did you shoot?
Alison Brie: Recently. Summer. Like the end of July.
HDD: Playing sisters, did you and Lizzy know each other before shooting the film?
Alison Brie: We did not. We got together and had dinner once before [shooting] and had one rehearsal. We did one sort of crash-course rehearsal with just the two of us and [the director] in a plain room, mapping it out. And I don’t even think we rehearsed every scene, just the key scenes – outside the bridal shop and outside the club in the beginning where Lizzy first gets proposed to. We talked through the dialog to make it our own. It was more about making sure that we were all on the same page about what was happening in a scene. It was more talking it out than reading it and working at it.
HDD: Well, it works really well. You two are great together.
Alison Brie: Thanks! And you saw [the movie]!
HDD: Of course I saw it!
Alison Brie: It was funny doing the interviews on the first two days when people were like, (in a low dumb manly voice) “Soooo, what’s it about?” Which is fine, just funny because people were asking us about something they knew nothing about.
HDD: You’ve seen the movie, right?
Alison Brie: Yeah!
HDD: I spoke with Mark Webber a few days ago about ‘The End of Love’ and we talked about him having three movies up here this year and he said he hadn’t seen one of the movies yet. I can’t remember if it was this one.
Alison Brie: It must be ‘For A Good Time, Call …’ because we had a “cast screening” [of 'Save the Date'].
HDD: And it’s a very funny movie!
Alison Brie: There were laughs in places where I didn’t expect them to be, like when it shows my character’s mom at the bridal shower. Everyone cracked up [at the premiere] and I thought, ‘That is kinda funny,’ but when we were in it, it seems to have more depth and to be more dramatic because we were just playing the reality of these scenes. We weren’t (in a vaudevillian voice) “playing it for comedy.” We weren’t bringing that (in a vaudevillian voice again) “comedy razzle dazzle.” (laughs)
HDD: I’ve got to ask – any word on the return of ‘Community?’
Alison Brie: Hmmm.
HDD: We need it back.
Alison Brie: Thank you! We’re still shooting episodes, so we’re finishing up the rest of the season. We have three more episodes to shoot and [NBC] keeps on saying vaguely, “It may come back in March or April.” It’s going to depend on what’s going on with other shows. They really want to air the rest of the season. We’re all feeling optimistic because it’s better to feel that way than – uhh – the other way. The fans have been really great about it. The flash mobs have been awesome -
HDD: – the beard pictures -
Alison Brie: – the beard pictures! People have been sending in a lot of letters to the network. It’s been really awesome. I feel like – I’ve never been prouder of our show than witnessing how it’s affected all these other people.
HDD: I interviewed Brit Marling about ‘Another Earth’ and she talked about how great it was to appear on ‘Community’ because the writers have had the freedom to do whatever they want.
Alison Brie: Yeah! They do! [Creator] Dan Harmon really fights for that. He’s got such integrity when it comes to his work. The network had been great to let us get away with a lot, but they also take a lot of prodding from Dan let him get the things that he want onto the show. [NBC] is such a great place for supporting really creative shows.
HDD: What else are you working on right now?
Alison Brie: I have a movie coming out in April called ‘The Five-Year Engagement’ with Jason Segal and Emily Blunt and Chris Platt.
HDD: I love that cast.
Alison Brie: Yeah! It’s another wedding movie. It’s all about wedding movies right now, it seems like. (goofy voice) Girls be getting married.
Young Hollywood sits down with the stars of ‘Save the Date’, Alison Brie and Lizzy Caplan, at Sundance to get their thoughts on the film, the delicious awkwardness of sex scenes, and whether it’s better to be a producer or actor at Sundance. We also quiz them on real-life relationship questions, like online dating, break-up texts, and going out with a friend’s ex.
Alison Brie (Mad Men, Community) talks with Ross Mathews about her new film Save the Date.
Greendale Community College’s doors might be closed at the moment, but that doesn’t mean class isn’t quietly in session inside.
Late last year, NBC pulled the critically acclaimed but criminally under-watched “Community” from its schedule, with a return date yet to be announced. Some fans were so outraged by the network’s decision that they staged a flash mob outside of NBC’s 30 Rockefeller Center headquarters earlier this month, but to no avail — the show remains on the sidelines to this date.
Still, progress is being made on the “Community” set itself, at least. Actress Alison Brie, who stars in the series as the beautiful but quirky Annie Edison, told MTV News that work on the NBC comedy is ongoing despite the show’s disappearance from the network’s schedule.
“We’re still wrapping up ‘Community,’ our third season,” Brie told us at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, where she was appearing in support of her new film “Save the Date.”
Asked about when the show might return, she claimed: “I don’t know! It’s in the air! It’s America’s biggest cliffhanger! I don’t know what’s going to happen, but we’re still shooting the third season, so hopefully it’s going to air in March or April.”
Meanwhile, if “Community” fans are looking for more Brie in their lives, they don’t need to tune into NBC. Chances are high that the actress will reprise her role as Pete Campbell’s wife, Trudy, on the upcoming season of AMC’s “Mad Men,” returning to airwaves for the first time in over a year on March 25.
“You may [see me in more 'Mad Men'],” Brie assured us about her probable return to the Emmy-winning drama, now entering its fifth season. “You should definitely tune into ‘Mad Men’ this season, because I hear it’s going to be very good.”