How I Met Your Mother

Spoiler Alert! Jennifer Morrison is back on the lot where she spent more than five seasons as House's Dr. Cameron — but this time she's in a new role that showcases a killer comedic side we never knew she had. Jennifer joins CBS' How I Met Your Mother on October 18 as Ted's new love interest, a mischievous architecture nerd named Zoey Van Smoot — the most likely candidate yet to be the titular mom.  

"Without giving anything away, it's a very, very big character who influences Ted's life quite a bit, so we were being very picky with who we cast," reveals creator Craig Thomas. "We'll see Zoey become a fixture of this group's world."

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During a break in filming with Josh Radnor (Ted), Jennifer tells me, "It feels natural to be here." A rabid HIMYM fan, she campaigned hard for the role. "I was in Dallas playing a delusional killer on an episode of [NBC's] Chase [costarring real-life boyfriend Amaury Nolasco] when they called for me to come read with Josh." Adds Josh, "She was the unanimous choice" for the part.

Zoey and Ted hit it off when they meet on the streets of Manhattan and start talking architecture. But the budding flirtation sours when she discovers he's been hired to design a new building in the place of the historic one she's protesting to preserve. "She'll be making his life hell," assures Thomas.

But it turns out Zoey isn't all Ted first believes her to be, with one whammy revealed in her first episode. "That complicates things," says Josh. An additional surprise comes a few episodes later when Ted attends a gala event at the American Museum of Natural History and encounters a woman in a sparkling ball gown who turns out to be Zoey. "He gets a completely different version of this girl," says Thomas. "Maybe there's a little rich princess side to her."

So what's the chance of Jennifer becoming a series regular? "I wouldn't rule anything out," says Thomas. "There's something very kindred about them. In the middle of the season, this takes a big, interesting turn. We will be flashing forward to Ted's wedding day throughout the season. We're talking about seeing Zoey's house, and she'll become part of Ted's Thanksgiving Day, much to his chagrin. And I can tell you she's in our season finale. But whether Jennifer's the mother, I just can't say."

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