Jane Lynch, Lovespring International
Who put the overly amorous boss from The 40 Year Old Virgin
in charge of a dating
service?! Part of the credit goes to Will & Grace
's Eric McCormack
, one of the executive producers of the Lifetime series Lovespring International
(premiering tonight at 11 pm/ET). In this improv comedy, Jane Lynch
plays Victoria, the head of an "elite Beverly Hills" dating service... based out of Tarzana
, California... whose staffers are as pathetic as its pretend pedigree. At the risk of having her "haunt our dreams" — because word has it she can
— TVGuide.com called Lynch to discuss this and her many other hilarious gigs.
TVGuide.com: Is this the hardest-working woman in show business?
Jane Lynch: Indeed it is!
TVGuide.com: Did I get your title right there?
Lynch: You sure did. That is correct.
TVGuide.com: Seriously, you're everywhere. Do you ever stop?
Lynch: It feels like I don't work a lot though. A day here, a day there — it just all seems to play at the same time, giving the people the impression that I am omnipresent. [Laughs] I sit around a lot and watch Hardball and HGTV, thinking, "God, will the phone ever ring again?"
TVGuide.com: Is your series now called Lovespring International or just Lovespring?
Lynch: It is Lovespring International.
TVGuide.com: I thought maybe they had changed it to keep it from sounding like an infomercial.
Lynch: [Laughs] No, it started out as just Lovespring, but now it's Lovespring International.
TVGuide.com: What is Victoria's own romantic status?
Lynch: They haven't said, but I'm imagining she's widowed. She was married to a really rich guy, probably a little bit older, and he died in a freakish accident.
TVGuide.com: Lord knows her employees aren't in healthy relationships!
Lynch: Oh, none of us are, hence the irony.
TVGuide.com: I like the gal who boasts she has been in "a committed relationship for 20 years...."
Lynch: "But he won't leave his wife." [Laughs] Yeah....
TVGuide.com: It's a great cast — Sam Pancake, Jennifer Elise Cox....
Lynch: The six of us, we've been guest stars on sitcoms where we'll come in and do the funny scene and leave, but we don't have name recognition, just a bit of face recognition. But Sam, I watched the first three episodes yesterday and he's frickin' brilliant. I've known him a long time, and the world is going to know what the big deal is about Sam Pancake after this show airs. And I might have to kill you if I told you who, but we've got some really cool people coming as guest stars.
TVGuide.com: Sam's character reminds me of Waiting for Guffman's Corky.
Lynch: [Laughs] Yeah, he has a little of that "I'm not at all in touch with my own sexuality, but I walk around like a big flamer."
TVGuide.com: Shortly before I called you, I had interviewed one of your Virgin costars, Paul Rudd.
Lynch: Oh, no kidding! Speaking of a flamer.... [Laughs]
TVGuide.com: He said to ask about "that time she went down to Mexico and killed a man with her mind."
Lynch: [Howls] Oh, he's a funny guy. You saw 40 Year Old Virgin, right? He improvised all that stuff. Remember that scene where he's watching The Bourne Identity, and he's like, "Y'know, I always thought that Matt Damon was like a Streisand, but he's rocking the s--- in this one"? Every take, Matt Damon was something different. The weirdest one was the one they used.
TVGuide.com: I haven't seen the DVD's outtakes, but I figure you're in there somewhere, right?
Lynch: Seth [Rogen], who played Cal, and I have a 12-minute scene talking about how I'm going to leave Smart Tech and start working at Home Depot, and by the end of it we're talking about what I'm going to try to steal during the first week, how I'm going to smoke weed in the garden center.... It's really fun.
TVGuide.com: Your famous "I will haunt your dreams" line — was that all you, or in the script?
Lynch: You know, the role was written for a guy, so I went in with kind of a loose script and they said, "Now go off the script," and I turned it into, "Hey, if you really want to lose this virginity, my door is always open, so to speak...." [Director-writer] Judd [Apatow] transcribed that and put it into the movie. The line that you brought up — "haunt your dreams" — was mine, but I tell you, Judd was throwing stuff at me a lot, too. He doesn't claim any credit for any of our improvising, but he was very, very helpful.
TVGuide.com: If you could only do Christopher Guest films for the rest of your career, would you be happy?
Lynch: Yes, yes. If I died after Best in Show, I would have been at the pearly gates going, "This was a great life."
TVGuide.com: What can you say about his next film, For Your Consideration? Everyone's so hush-hush about it.
Lynch: Are they? Well, I'll tell you everything you want to know! I have a small part in it, but I get to be with Fred Willard.
TVGuide.com: He's playing an Access Hollywood-type host on the Academy Awards' red carpet, right?
Lynch: Yeah, and I play his cohost. I didn't get a word in edgewise. Catherine O'Hara came up to me and said, "You've just been Willarded," because she knows how it feels, having done Guffman. Chris apparently told Fred, "Don't let Jane get a word in," and Fred said, "Shouldn't we tell her that?" Chris said, "No." [Laughs] But Fred's a rambler and it's all gold, so you've got to let him ramble. I knew it would all be about how I react to it.
TVGuide.com: Lovespring has a Guest-film feel to it. Lots of awkward moments.
Lynch: I love that. That's the gold that the directors dig out. We shoot and we shoot and we shoot, and they come up with that stuff. One of the things [executive producer] Guy Shalem likes is for us to have absolutely no agenda, and that terrifies me. Even if for the Christopher Guest films I have no lines and I'm supposed to improvise, I have an idea of what I'm going to do. I don't show up empty-handed. But Guy doesn't even want that, so I was taken aback and uncomfortable for most of this shoot. [Laughs] Now that I've seen the episodes, I have so much faith in him! I am so ready to go back and do more.
TVGuide.com: Is it safe to say that some of the top-secret guest stars are people we've seen you work with before?
Lynch: Uh, yes!
TVGuide.com: You play Will Ferrell's mother in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (opening Aug. 4). In what universe are you Will Ferrell's mother?
Lynch: Ha-ha! The one where I'm wearing a long gray wig. I'm also his 17-year-old mother, in flashbacks. I'm spanning the years in that film!
TVGuide.com: Based on the people I've spoken to who are in it, it's high on my list of must-see summer films.
Lynch: I haven't seen it yet, but I ran into Sacha Baron Cohen [who plays Ferrell's race-car-driving rival], and he saw it and was thrilled — and I have a feeling he doesn't get thrilled easily!