I recently got the chance to talk to Joanne Baron about her role in ‘This Is 40’. Here, Joanne talks about what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set and how she got into acting in the first place…
What’s the general plotline surrounding the film?
The plot is about how love and family, even when we don’t feel like it is, is the thing that makes life full and meaningful.
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
I play the Vice Principal at the school where the main characters played by Leslie Mann and Paul Rudd’s daughter attends school and another parent played by Melissa McCarthy demands a meeting about her son being bullied by them. She says they attacked her thirteen year old son.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
I auditioned for Allison Jones for a few roles and happily I got cast as the Vice Principal.
How would you say this film is different and unique?
Its a big comedy with the artfulness and soul of an indie film. It’s fresh and unique with it’s own voice.
The film stars Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow, Jason Segel, Annie Mumolo, Robert Smigel, Megan Fox, Charlyne Yi and Hugh Fink – with Judd Apatow onboard as director – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set? Any good anecdotes?
I had the most fun ever! Paul and Leslie and Melissa were so awesome and funny and Judd Apatow has this unique creative process. He creates an improvisational collaborative environment that is fantastic!
My main anecdote is we couldn’t stop laughing! I remember Judd saying we had to stop laughing that it wasn’t funny if we all kept laughing ourselves through our performances, but it was just so crazy funny it was hard to stop!
Let’s talk a bit about you Joanne. What made you want to get into the acting industry in the first place?
I don’t think I wanted to get into the industry, I just wanted to act. The need was a need to escape into another world and I’m sure the desire for approval. But although these motivations were the initiators, with training came a deep appreciation and love of the craft.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to pursue a career in the industry?
Make sure you are prepared, that means fully trained and armed with the confidence that only comes from competence.
You’ve been in a number of different films and TV projects – which actors/actresses have been your favourites to work with and why? Any good stories?
I just worked with Robin Wright and it was deeply meaningful to me as it was on my web series and she has always been one of my favourite actresses in the world.
What’s currently on your I-Pod right now?
I see every new film I can and go to New York and see plays as often as I can but I’m not an I- Pod girl.
If you could have dinner with three guests – (living or dead), who would you choose and why?
Meryl Streep for having the time with a sheer genius Lena Dunham for the same reason and C.S.Lewis for divine inspiration.
Which film was your favourite of 2012 and why?
I loved ‘Rust And Bone’ for its unsentimental take on love and it’s incredible acting.
What’s coming up for you in 2013? You’ve got a fair few projects coming out…
I am in the pilot ‘Rake’ with Greg Kinnear that the great Sam Raimi directed and my own comedy web series produced by Warren Littlefield – (known for ‘Friends’, ‘Frasier’, ‘Seinfeld’).
Thanks for the interview!