Maxim Interview: Lake Bell

The actress talks about her directorial debut, In A World…, voiceovers, and Childrens Hospital. Plus: She’s down to do another season of How To Make It In America, should the opportunity arise.

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Your new film, In A World…, explores the tight-knit world of voiceover artists, and your character, Carol, is the daughter of a famous voice actor who is trying to launch a career in her own right. Is it true that you did some voiceover work when you first came to Hollywood?
No, that is actually incorrect. I tried to get into the voiceover industry, and I looked at it as an aspiration, but I was never accepted into it because it was such a damn clique, and so hierarchy-based, and there’s not a lot of ladies who do it. It was one of those things where I was like, “Oh, yeah, I know how to do voices, I’m so talented, maybe I’ll be able to break into the voiceover industry and I won’t have to be a waitress and I’ll just hit it big,” – you know, because I went to drama school, and I had this voiceover demo, and I had all these dialects. And then it turned out that you can’t just roll into someone else’s industry and think you’re gonna conquer it. I was like a crazy person – totally naïve. So, obviously, I became a waitress.

What’s the worst job you ever had before you found success as an actress?
Probably the worst job I ever had was being a promotional girl at a tech conference where I had to wear like a skimpy, dumb, space outfit and show people where the bathroom was and how to work a cell phone. Yeah, it was really lame-o. And I was kind of treated like a moron. It was not fun. I mean, it was funny in hindsight, but at the time I felt like a total turkey.

Read my entire interview with Lake Bell at Maxim.com.

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Maxim Interview: Joel McHale

The actor and comedian talks Klondike Bars, The Soup, and Community. He’s also open to sexual reassignment surgery. Don’t worry about it.

Joel McHale

Joel McHale

You’ve been hosting E!’s The Soup (formerly Talk Soup) since 2004. What is it like being on both sides of the aisle, as both a celebrity gossip commentator, and a sitcom star? 
I’m the male version of Chelsea Handler. She does the same. I would liken it to a comedian that also acts. I see The Soup as kind of like a long late-night monologue that has a lot of clips in it. I took The Soup because—or rather, they offered it to me and I accepted—not just because of money, but because of the Greg Kinnear pedigree, where he transitioned from Talk Soup into acting, though at this point I’m not transitioning, I’m doing both (thank God). And when people see me on Community, I think they see that I can do both. I don’t think they’re like, “I don’t get it! He’s supposed to be telling me about the Kardashians! He’s not Jeff Winger!” But now, with the movie I’m doing now, it’s no joke. It’s not a comedy.

You’re talking about Beware The Night, with Erica Bana?
Yes, it’s heavy, dark, and violent. And really, it has some not-so-pleasant themes. Obviously Eric Bana brings serious cachet to the movie, and Edgar Ramirez is in it, and Olivia Munn.

Do you ever find that celebrities that you encounter off-screen are afraid that they’ll become targets on The Soup?
No, I mean no celebrity’s ever come up to me and said “How fucking dare you!” I mean, I would justify that by saying, well, don’t drive backwards on the highway while high and then I won’t make fun of you. I’m pretty sure Bruce Jenner’s not a fan of mine, and that’s fine. But The Soup doesn’t break stories – it’s the same thing as a late-night monologue. It’s not like “News flash!” People think that because we’re on E! that’s what happens. It’s just like with Chelsea [Handler] – she doesn’t break stories, she’s just commenting on them.

Read my entire interview with Joel McHale at Maxim.com.

Maxim Interview: Chris O’Dowd

With his smash hit UK TV series Moone Boy now available in the US via HuluBridesmaids’ Chris O’Dowd cements his place as the hardest-working man in show biz. I spoke to Chris about his roughly 4,000 ongoing TV and film projects (including Girls and Thor 2), and subjected him to the same 10 questions Maxim always asks everyone.

Chris O'Dowd

Chris O’Dowd


Moone Boy is semi-autobiographical, and you play the imaginary friend of a young boy growing up in a big Irish family. Did you have an imaginary friend as a child?
I didn’t, unfortunately, and I wrote this show just to have that opportunity. I grew up in a house where there were seven of us and we just really didn’t have room for an imaginary friend in our little bungalow.

Do you come from a dysfunctional family?
Not at all, I think it’s the most functional family. I think it’s a family of misfits that work together perfectly, like a scrambled egg sandwich.

How does a kid from Boyle, Ireland, end up in show biz? What were some of your comedy influences?
God, that’s a good question, I don’t really know. I came to comedy much later. I went to drama school and was like a Shakespearean actor for a couple years. But in terms of like the small town…we had one celebrity when I was growing up. Very old, a woman called Maureen O’Sullivan and she was the first Jane in Tarzan. And I remember when I was around 7 or 8, she came back from living in Hollywood all of her life, and she was in her 70s, and they threw her a parade. And as a 7-year-old I must’ve thought, “Wow, she must’ve done something special to get a parade. I want a parade. What do I have to do to get a parade?” And my life’s been basically a journey to get a parade.

You have been quoted as saying that you think women are not offered enough good roles or good opportunities as writers in the comedy world. Do you think that has begun to shift a bit since Bridesmaids? Is that part of what drew you to that movie?
Definitely. To be honest, throughout my career, it’s just been my experience that I seem to work with a lot of female directors, definitely a lot more than the normal percentage of female directors that are out there, and I always enjoy it, because I think the characters are awesome and written better. But I do think things are shifting, it certainly seems that way, and I certainly hope so, with the likes of Kristin [Wiig] and Annie Mumolo, Lena Dunham, and [Friends with Kids director/star] Jennie Westfeldt, all of whom I worked with in the last 18 months. There’s so many amazing women out there, as soon as we get a shift in what male-to-female producers and executives are out there, I think it will come along even quicker.

Read my entire interview with Chris O’Dowd at Maxim.com.

Maxim Interview: Jason Schwartzman

The indie comedy wunderkind talks Moonrise Kingdom, Bill Murray, tequila, and more.
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You’ve worked with director Wes Anderson on many films, including Rushmore, The Darjeeling Limited, and Moonrise Kingdom. Are you guys real-life besties?
Well, Wes is 10 years older than me; I met him when I was 17. I was a musician making an album, and had never really thought about being in movies. But I met this casting director who asked if I’d ever been an actor, and I went to this audition [for Rushmore], just really thinking it would be more of a good story to tell people—hey, I auditioned for a movie!—but I got the part, and that’s the first time I met Wes. And I would say that from 17 until now, he’s been one of the most important people in my life.

You and Wes often work with Bill Murray. Do you have a favorite Bill Murray movie?
That’s really difficult. That’s like asking if I have a favorite Beatles album. Stripes is great, and so is Groundhog Day, and I loved him in The Man Who Knew Too LittleMeatballs,Ghostbusters… I am also a huge fan of Scrooged.

And What About Bob?
HUGE What About Bob? fan. My good What About Bob? story is that for a summer I worked at this small tennis center, and on the weekends they would show a movie in the rec room—which was a huge room with a film projector—and I tore tickets for the whole summer. But because it wasn’t like a professional theater, it wasn’t like a new movie was out every week, so What About Bob? played for whole month, and I took tickets and would watch the movie. I love that movie. It’s a deep, deep, deep love. And actually one of his best performances is also in Tootsie.

Read my entire interview with Jason Schwartzman at Maxim.com.

Details Magazine Interview: Bill Paxton

"The Hatfields and the McCoys"
AFTER A BRIEF hiatus from television following last year’s bittersweet finale of HBO’s Big Love, actor Bill Paxton, 57, returns to prime time in Hatfields & McCoys, the History Channel‘s first scripted miniseries, about the most infamous family feud in American history.

Paxton plays Randall McCoy, a Kentucky-bred Civil War veteran who becomes embroiled in a dispute with a former comrade and neighbor, Devil Anse Hatfield (Kevin Costner), which escalates into a bloody and tumultuous civil war of its own.

Or, to put it another way, there’s a lot of sex, violence, and booze. And also Tom Berenger, who plays Hatfield’s crazy uncle.

I spoke to Paxton about his role in Hatfields & McCoys (and that beard!), his Big Love wives, working with director James Cameron, and the likelihood of a Twister 2.

Read the full interview at Details.com.