Interview with Noureen DeWulf of "Anger Management" on FX - Primetime TV Show Articles From The TV MegaSite

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By Suzanne

Noureen DeWulf

Interview with Noureen DeWulf of "Anger Management" on  FX 8/14/12

This was an excellent interview! Not only was DeWulf very nice, but she handled my question about Charlie Sheen very easily. I'm sure I'm not the first person to ask about him, but still, I wasn't quite sure if I would get in trouble for asking it or not. There was no problem from her at all. She's quite a good actress, too, which you know if you watch the show.

Final Transcript
FX NETWORK: Anger Management
August 14, 2012/10:00 a.m. PDT
Noureen DeWulf, “Lacey” / Anger Management
Kristy Silvernail, FX Media Relations Manager

Moderator : Good day, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for standing by. Welcome to the Anger Management Conference call. At this time all participants are in a listen-only mode. Later, we will conduct a question and answer session and instructions will be given at that time. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded today, Tuesday August 14th, 2012. I would now like to turn the conference over to Ms. Kristy Silvernail from FX. Please go ahead.

K. Silvernail : Good morning, everyone. Welcome to the Anger Management conference call. Before we get started, I wanted to take a brief moment and thank all of you for participating and especially the lovely Noureen DeWulf for sharing her time with us. Thank you. As you all know, Anger Management airs on Thursdays at 9:30 p.m. Eastern and Pacific followed by Wilfred at 10:00, Louie at 10:30, and Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell at 11:00. With all that said, let's get started.

Moderator : Ladies and gentlemen, our first question is from the line of Karen Moul with Please go ahead.

K. Moul : Hey, Noureen. Thanks so much for being with us today. We all appreciate it.

N. DeWulf : Absolutely. My pleasure.

K. Moul : Anger Management, it's a comedy and “Lacey” is pretty over the top and a crazy character. I know you've said in interviews that you don't have a ton in common with her. You've never shot anybody. How do you relate to her and make her real?

N. DeWulf : Well, a lot of sitcom is the jokes. So I try to keep a balance between hitting the joke and keeping her grounded. It's a precarious balance but it's a sitcom format. So that's what I do.

K. Moul : The anger discussion group…sort of ensemble. How are you enjoying working with the rest of the gang in the group?

N. DeWulf : I adore every single member of our group therapy. Barry Corbin and I eat lunch together everyday. It's such an unusual pairing. Actually, in this week's episode coming up we have a solo scene together which I think turned out pretty well. I love him. Derek [Richardson] and Michael [Boatman], I just couldn't say nicer things about them. Then, of course, Charlie [Sheen] leading our group…it's amazing because he is such a sitcom legend.

So we all look at each other and just feel like, wow. You know, we're working with Charlie Sheen, that's really cool for actors in a sitcom world. So we're excited. I personally, just adore our group. I feel the closest to them of our cast, I feel, because I spend most time with these guys. I love them.

K. Moul : Great. Well, I'm going to hop off and let someone have a chance. Thanks a lot.

N. DeWulf : Thank you.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is from the line of Suzanne Lanoue with The TV Megasite. Please go ahead.

S. Lanoue : Hi. How are you today?

N. DeWulf : Good. Thanks. How are you?

S. Lanoue : Pretty good. I read that you're from Georgia. I was wondering what part of Georgia you're from?

N. DeWulf : I'm from Stone Mountain, Georgia.

S. Lanoue : Is that near Atlanta?

N. DeWulf : Yes. It's near Atlanta. It's home of the largest freestanding piece of granite in our country.

S. Lanoue : I've been there, yes. I actually live in Columbus. I'm calling you from there. It's about two hours from there. I was wondering, did you have any kind of worry or trepidation or anything before taking a role and working with Charlie Sheen with all the press and everything?

N. DeWulf : Yes, because you never know what you're walking into. Charlie did have an amazing crazy last year with so much media attention. But when there was a discussion of Charlie Sheen…his big comeback to TV, I knew that Charlie, of all people, probably had the best odds of making a comeback, and successful one. I wanted to be involved in his comeback on any level. It's an honor.

I was excited because no matter what he's an eccentric guy. He's interesting. I knew it was going to be an awesome experience for me to have personally and professionally. I think it turned out for the best. Our premiere episode opened…it debuted higher than any other cable premiere ever had. So that's the risk I took and it was an amazing one. I'm so glad I jumped on board with him.

S. Lanoue : All right. Thanks a lot.

N. DeWulf : Thank you.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is from the line of Amy Harrington with Pop Culture Passionistas. Please go ahead.

A. Harrington : Hi. Thanks for your time today.

N. DeWulf : Absolutely.

A. Harrington : So, obviously, the show’s about dealing with anger management. So what gets you angry in real life?

N. DeWulf : Well, gosh, I don't know what I can say to that because there's specific things that do, obviously, make me angry. Probably things I've been warned not to talk about like politics and religion.

A. Harrington : Fair enough. So let's talk about something happier then. You Tweeted recently while you were watching the Olympics and you talked about watching your husband win a medal in hockey.

N. DeWulf : Yes.

A. Harrington : So could you just talk about what that experience was like seeing him win?

N. DeWulf : Yes. Honestly, I cry every time I see somebody medal in the Olympics. I generally do. It's crazy. I've watched the sport. I have no idea anything about handball and all of these obscure sports, mental biking or whatever that biking is when they keep turning around and looking back. I just think it's such an amazing honor to be the best in the world at something or one of the three or four best in the world.

For me, I was just dating my husband at the time, Ryan Miller. I watched him play and he said, "You know I'm going to be in the Olympics." So he would call me every day. I went up and surprised him at the gold medal game. I didn't tell him I was there until after because I was actually working here in L.A. and I didn't think I would be able to go. It was amazing. It was on my birthday.

I can't describe it but I was just touched. It's amazing to see somebody work from the time that they are three to the time that they’re 30 or I think he was 29. But he worked for so many years to get to the point where he's at and then they gave him the medal. He was disappointed it was silver, but I think it's team sports and they do everything they can.

A. Harrington : Absolutely. Well, thanks for your time too. We really appreciate it.

N. DeWulf : Thank you.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is from the line of Earl Dittman with Wireless Digital Journal. Please go ahead.

E. Dittman : Hi. How are you this morning?

N. DeWulf : Good. How are you?

E. Dittman : Doing great. I have to say I really, really enjoyed the show. I went to the show thinking I don't know if I'm going to like this or not. I absolutely fell in love with it. A lot of it had to do with the acting. All of you are really, really great. Did you all go through a lot of rehearsals before the show started or did they just kind of throw you in and see how you all work together or how does that all go about?

N. DeWulf : We don't really rehearse that much on our show. We shoot at such a rapid pace that we pretty much shoot the rehearsal. I mean there is no rehearsal, essentially. We just shoot. So everyone is just kind of being very instinctual. I think it works the way they cast the show. The actors have kind of shown that these characters exist inside of them. They've played similar things before or they're characters that we can all live with. We kind of just run with it.

E. Dittman : Yes. Is that good for you as an actor to be almost in a way to do it like that or would you rather be more well scripted or you to follow a script I assume?

N. DeWulf : We do follow a script. It's just we don't follow the traditional sitcom format of shooting. Typically, you would get the table read on Monday and then you would rehearse Tuesday, Wednesday; Thursday and Friday shoot in front of a live audience. On our show we shoot one episode on Monday and Tuesday. We have a table read on Wednesday and we shoot the next episode on Thursday and Friday. So we're working twice as fast and we don't have a live studio audience. So it does provide an interesting, not dilemma, but it does provide a challenge, I think, to all of us actors because you know we do want to tell and nail these jokes at the same time. There's a certain kind of confidence that it does build in you and a freshness that I think is pretty unique. So we all try to focus on that and just give it our all every day that's what we have to do.

E. Dittman : So that must be a lot of fun.

N. DeWulf : It's a blast. Working with Charlie is amazing. You can't ask to work with a more interesting person, honestly.

E. Dittman : That's great. Well thank you so much. I appreciate it.

N. DeWulf : Thank you so much.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is from the line of Karen Moul with Please go ahead.

K. Moul : Hi again. I didn't think I'd come around that fast. You recently signed on to do a new movie with Paul Rudd.

N. DeWulf : Yes.

K. Moul : I'm wondering, is that going to shoot during hiatus and can you tell us anything about it yet?

N. DeWulf : Yes. Absolutely. It stars Paul Rudd and Amy Poehler. It's directed by David Wain who is responsible for Children's Hospital and Wet Hot American Summer…. I play Paul Rudd's secretary. It’s very similar to the role that I played in Ghosts of Girlfriends Past alongside with Matthew McConaughey but this time I'm speaking in that role. The movie is kind of a spoof of romantic comedies. So it's interesting. I'm playing a character by the same name, “Melanie.” I actually already shot it. I went to New York and shot it in our earlier part of our hiatus.

K. Moul : Do you know when it's coming out?

N. DeWulf : I think they told me it would be out next year in 2013 but they haven't said yet exactly the date.

K. Moul : How much fun was it getting back to doing movies again? Do you prefer movies or TV or enjoy both?

N. DeWulf : I enjoy both. Honestly, it was really fun. You forget how fun it is. Obviously, Paul Rudd is so–I just can't say nicer things about him. He is so lovely and he's hilarious. Watching him and Michael Ian Black improv. I felt like I was learning. I felt like I was just around the best of the best. I just was kind of blown away by how amazing they are at improv, so it was fun to kind of tag along and their scenes and just add when I could.

Yes, I mean I love that. I love working on movies because of that, you know, and especially in comedies where we can improv and stuff. TV is amazing too and this is my first time as a series regular even though I've worked for so long, I've never really been a regular on a show. It's awesome to me because every Thursday night I get to watch at least a couple of jokes that I'm doing or something that I didn't. That's awesome for me as an actor to have that. To be able to say, oh yes, I'm on the show. So that's pretty cool too and be in people's homes. I think that's a nice thing.

K. Moul : Well, cool. I can't wait for the film to come out. Maybe we'll talk to you again when that comes out. Thanks.

N. DeWulf : Thanks.

Moderator : Thank you. We have another follow-up question from the line of Earl Dittman. Please go ahead.

E. Dittman : It's me again. You said that you liked going back and forth to television and film. Is that something that you like doing in your career? Does it improve your acting or does it help you as an actress in anyway?

N. DeWulf : Yes. I definitely, I love to go back and forth because there are such different mediums that it's fun to remind yourself how to be more thorough, how to be less thorough, how to punch a joke, how to not. Usually, I'm going back and forth in comedic television and comedies. Honestly, that's really what I do. But I learned from Charlie Sheen. I learned from Paul Rudd.

I feel like every acting job I've gotten has been with someone legendary. I don't know why. I'm so lucky to stand in the scenes with them. I've learned so much from my costars. They're better acting lessons than I ever could take in a class in L.A.

E. Dittman : Yes. So you're ready to do 90 episodes when they finally say yes ...

N. DeWulf : I hope so. The fact that they said they're not going to tell us until all the episodes have aired. They said that along the way. We're all hoping and our fingers and toes are crossed that we will get picked up and have a chance to kind of come back and do more and have more storylines. I'm excited about the possibility and I hope it happens.

E. Dittman : Well, America seems to really enjoy the show. Really, they have clung on to it really, really quickly. I think that's a great sign. I think it says something to a little of all of us. We need that kind of episodes, to laugh here and there in our lives.

N. DeWulf : Yes. I hope so.

E. Dittman : That's great. So one last thing and I'll leave you alone. Charlie, when he kind of ignores some of those tabloids things and everything. Does he just kind of laugh at them whenever they come up on the set or somebody brings a magazine or anything like that?

N. DeWulf : Oh, totally honestly with you, we don't even talk about it because honestly right now his press is so much about our show that all of our discussions related to press revolve around the show. We're like, oh, this is great. We're going to be in this magazine. But it's mostly just positive back and forth about the show. It really doesn't have to do with his past.

E. Dittman : That's fantastic. I'm glad to hear that.

N. DeWulf : Yes.

E. Dittman : Well, thanks again. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed the show and your acting. Thanks so much.

N. DeWulf : Thank you.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is from the line of Chris Smith with Twitter. Please go ahead.

C. Smith : Good morning. This is Chris. Anger Management from Twitter.

N. DeWulf : Hi. How are you?

C. Smith : Good. I have nearly 36,000 followers out there that keep rooting for the show. They're really enjoying it. Not only in the United States but around the world, Australia, U.K. to be released soon. One of the questions that I've fielded from one of my followers. Are we going to see any storylines with you outside of the group therapy setting?

N. DeWulf : Actually, in this upcoming episode I have two scenes outside of the group therapy setting. One with Barry Corbin and one with Charlie. Those are dealing with my road rage issues. So I think that'll be my first kind of experience, at “Lacey's” first experience out of the house, out of the group therapy session. It still has to do with fixing her issues but that'll be the first time I get out of the house. I look forward to, hopefully, in the future having some more scenes. Maybe even in a bar or outside of the house more. This week's episode is a great one for that.

C. Smith : Very good then. Thank you.

N. DeWulf : Thank you. Oh yes, and they take place in a Fiat. I forgot to say that.

C. Smith : Wow.

Moderator : We have Karen Moul, again, with

K. Moul : Hi again.

N. DeWulf : Hi.

K. Moul : I read that you’re an American actress of Indian descent. Your parents were from India.

N. DeWulf : Yes.

K. Moul : There are just so many awesome Indian/American and British/Indian actresses right now. Maybe you're just an actress, is your heritage even an issue anymore? Or is the proliferation of Indian actors making it easier for you to get more mainstream kind of roles?

N. DeWulf : Well, when I first started in 2003, I felt like I was maybe one of five people. I've worked hard to get out of the box, out of the roles that are completely defined by my ethnicity. I don't want every line to be about the fact that my heritage is Indian or every joke to be about my race. So at the beginning of my career, I did have some of those.

I played a foreign exchange student, but as the years have gone by I've made a conscience effort to get out of the box and really fight for roles that are not ethnic specific, “Lacey,” for example, my character in The Goods a movie I did with Jeremy Piven. In a lot of films that I've been in have nothing to do with my race. That's really important to me. Yes, I think the more the better. The more diversity that we have in our cinemas is positive for everybody.

It represents the true diversity of our country. I think that's how film and TV should be. We should have some ethnic diversity in the cast. But my personal goal has always been to test against other actors that are not–I don't like to go into an audition and only see other Indian actresses. I much more want the roles that are not designed that way. That way I can serve my own self better and serve people who look like me better by not making everything focused on my race, you know.

K. Moul : Yes. “Lacey,” I think is certainly quintessentially American. Road rage is a very American construct I think.

N. DeWulf : Yes.

K. Moul : Great. Well thank you very much.

N. DeWulf : Thank you.

Moderator : Thank you. Our next question is a follow up from the line of Earl Dittman with Wireless Digital Journal. Please go ahead.

E. Dittman : You just can't get rid of me.

N. DeWulf : I like it.

E. Dittman : That was kind of the same question I was going to ask. You've obviously avoided the stereotyping that some studios and things like to do in putting the same ethnic, of any sort, into the same roles over, and over, and over again. So was it a big fight for you to do or was it fairly easy?

N. DeWulf : What was the last part? Was it a big what?

E. Dittman : Was it a big effort? Did you really have to push and make people understand that hey, I'm just not this. I'm an actress who can do anything. Or, was it fairly easy and people were understanding?

N. DeWulf : Well, I think once I started to kind of do good work playing some of the more stereotypical roles and kind of get some notoriety a little bit like that, I did a movie called American Dreams with Hugh Grant. I played a comedic role in that. It was a Persian role. I was part of a Persian family. I played... daughter. I did West Bank Story. So I played a character named “Fatima,” who was Palestinian. I kind of hopped round different ethnicities but yes, the ethnicity was important.

Then I think that after I did maybe five or six kind of bigger projects I started to get called in for more mainstream roles and more pilots. So, for me, it was kind of a process of going, you know what, I'm going to be forced into passing on that because I don't want to be always seen as that role. Then I established myself as being a good actress in some of those roles. Then, I think, I was able to be seen and kind of fight for the right to read for more mainstream roles.

E. Dittman : Yes. Well, that's fantastic. Do you have any other films coming up besides the one you just spoke about?

N. DeWulf : I'm in an animated film. It's Fantasia and it's about birds in Africa and I play a character named “Posie.”

E. Dittman : When is that coming out?

N. DeWulf : I think it'll be out next year. It stars Abigail Breslin and Samuel L. Jackson.

E. Dittman : Fantastic. Well, that's got to be a lot of fun. Well, thanks again for your time. I really appreciate it.

N. DeWulf : Thank you so much.

E. Dittman : Bye bye.

Moderator : I'm showing no further questions at this time. Please continue.

K. Silvernail : All right. Thanks, again, to everybody for joining us today and especially you, Noureen. As a reminder, Anger Management airs Thursday nights at 9:30 p.m. Eastern and Pacific. If anybody has additional questions I can always be reached at 310-369-3699. I hope you all have a wonderful Tuesday.

N. DeWulf : Thank you. Bye.

Moderator : Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude our conference for today. Thank you for your participation and for using AT&T's Executive TeleConference.

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