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By Krista

Max Greenfield

Interview with Max Greenfield of "New Girl" on FOX 1/4/13

I really liked listening to Max answer all the questions, although I was disappointed I didn't get to ask him my questions. I had planned to ask him about his differences/similarities to his character of Schmidt on the show.. He was very funny and just a really nice guy.

Final Transcript
FBC PUBLICITY: The New Girl Conference Call
January 4, 2013/11:00 a.m. PST
Max Greenfield – New Girl
Todd Adair – FBC Publicity

Moderator Welcome to the New Girl Conference Call with Max Greenfield. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. Later, we will conduct a question and answer session. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded. I would now like to turn the conference over to our host, Mr. Todd Adair; please go ahead.

T. Adair Thank you for joining us today, and Happy New Year. New Girl returns with new episodes for 2013 on Tuesday, January 8th at 9:00 Eastern/Pacific. Joining us today is Max Greenfield, who was also recently nominated for his first Golden Globe award for supporting actor in a series, with the ceremony being held next Sunday the 13th. We’ll now begin questions for Max; thanks for joining us.

M. Greenfield Thank you for such a lovely introduction, Mr. Todd.

T. Adair I spent all holiday doing that.

M. Greenfield Well, you couldn’t have done any better.

T. Adair Thanks. We’ll start our first question.

Moderator Our first question comes from the line of Reg Seeton with The

R. Seeton Let me ask you this. What were you doing when you heard the Golden Globe nomination, and how does it feel to be recognized?

M. Greenfield Well, it feels wonderful especially in such a kind of odd category, where they have people from movies and miniseries and dramas. And all of a sudden they’re like well, the nominees are Ed Harris and Schmidt from New Girl. So, to hear that was kind of— I don’t know, it felt really nice.

It always feels nice to be recognized for the work that you do, and especially in such a kind of cool and big awards show like the Golden Globes, it’s going to be a lot of fun just to participate in an event like that.

As far as where I was, it was five in the morning and I was very much asleep.

R. Seeton Let me follow up with this. In the upcoming episode, can you talk about the white guilt that Schmidt is feeling and what Winston does to help him out with it?

M. Greenfield Sure. I think he sees Winston out and he’s hanging out with a bunch of other African-American guys and I think Schmidt kind of—in his own naïve sort of way, somehow assumes that he’s being held back in the loft and is not feeling comfortable around white people, such as Schmidt and Nick and Jess, and doesn’t feel like he can fully be himself. So he tries to, in his most idiotic of ways, tries to give Winston an opportunity to really spread his wings within the loft and Winston quickly realizes what he’s doing and how stupid he is, and kind of plays along with him and gets Schmidt really riled up and it turns into quite a wild adventure.

Moderator Our next question will come from the line of Alexandra Hurtado with Us Weekly.

A. Hurtado I have three questions for you. First, in the last episode Schmidt and Cece seemed to have smoothed over any hostility. So I wanted to know, is there any chance of them to get back together? And do you want to see them together?

M. Greenfield I think there’s always a chance. And personally, yes, I’d like to see them back together. You try to play the character and make it as personal as possible and at this point, Schmidt is working so hard to get back with her that I think I personally kind of want to just win already.

A. Hurtado And you also performed a sexy lap dance for Nick last episode. Where did you learn those moves?

M. Greenfield I was actually—I don’t want to say a stripper because that’s not the right word, but an exotic dancer for quite some time. That’s not only Channing Tatum’s story, but it’s mine as well. It’s a shame that he was so much more famous than I was at the time the story came out. And now it’s like, I don’t want to feel like I’m copying him so—you’re the first to hear that so if you want to break that story, that’s on you.

A. Hurtado Oh, awesome. It’s an exclusive.

M. Greenfield Yes, it’s totally exclusive. I feel like it might be weird though.

A. Hurtado Awesome. Thank you so much. And then last but not least, you seem to play Schmidt a little too …. Have you ever done anything to warrant putting a dollar in the douche bag jar?

M. Greenfield Oh, sure. Plenty of times.

A. Hurtado Any examples?

M. Greenfield It’s usually just dumb things that my wife will just be like, “What’s wrong with you?”

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Breanna Hare with

B. Hare So, I wanted to ask you a few questions today. First of all, speaking of the douche bag jar, I wanted to know what your definition of douche-baggery was. Or what makes a douche bag?

M. Greenfield Oh, geez. I don’t know that it can quite be defined. I think it’s anytime you see someone out in life who is just trying just a bit too hard. I saw a guy yesterday driving around LA—and I don’t know if you’re out in LA or not, but it’s on the cooler side out here. I mean, we don’t live in Minnesota but it’s not exactly 90 degrees out here. And I saw some guy driving around his Porsche and he had the top down and his Marlboro was like billowing out of his car and I was like, just …. Anytime you can look at somebody and go, “We get it” – that’s, I think, the definition of a douche.

B. Hare What made you decide to take the role of Schmidt? Did you know when you first read for it that this was a role that was going to be a breakout part, or what kind of—

M. Greenfield Oh, I was just happy that I got to audition for the show, let alone get the role. It’s so funny when people ask me about like—that I had some sort of like choice or hope to—oh, I read the material and really responded. I was so excited to get the audition and just hoping to give a good read for people like Liz Meriwether and Jake Kasdan. And then to get the job, I was like, “You’ve got to be kidding me.” And then it certainly worked out wonderfully.

B. Hare Then my last question for you is how much do you improv as Schmidt, if at all?

M. Greenfield We definitely improv a little bit, but it’s the type of thing where you come into a scene, you do it as scripted, and then certainly if it’s working you want to then open it up a bit and—I don’t know. It’s never like, oh, let me come in and have an improvisational workshop on set. So many of our writers are always on set—and producers, and it’s sort of like a collaborative improvisation sometimes where people are throwing things in and sometimes other actors are throwing things in. When it’s working correctly, it’s just unbelievable.

Moderator Our next question will come from the line of Leah Baker with NiceGirlsTV.Com.

L. Baker I have a question regarding Schmidt and Cece. I know it looks like they’ve kind of found a comfortable place at the end of the Christmas episode, but I assume that does not mean that Schmidt is going to let this whole—her being set up go off without a hitch.

M. Greenfield He’s not. I think it’s every time they kind of make up, they get back to like—it seems as though he’ll go after her, he’ll totally screw it up, and then they’ll find a place in friendship, and once they get settled into like a normal friend/relationship, he feels the need to then go after her again.

L. Baker So we can definitely expect more hijinks.

M. Greenfield Oh, yes.

L. Baker Oh, good. And this has been a year of incredible guest stars. You guys had Olivia Munn, Jamie Lee Curtis, Rob Riggle. Is there anybody you would like to see guest star on New Girl?

M. Greenfield We get asked this all the time and all of a sudden I’ll see something on TV and I’ll be like, “Oh my God. I want him to be on the show.” So many people.

L. Baker How about anybody who’s going to be a guest star that’s coming up that you’re really excited to work with?

M. Greenfield Who’s coming back. Nelson Franklin comes back and he’s always a joy. Dennis Farina came on to play Nick’s dad.

L. Baker He’s awesome.

M. Greenfield He’s wonderful. We’ve been really lucky. The people who do our casting, Anya Colloff, is great. We end up getting some really good people.

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Kirsten Coachman with Blogcritics Magazine.

K. Coachman You’ve had some really pretty hilarious moments on the show. Is there a certain scene or a line that stands out to you as a favorite?

M. Greenfield I guess I quite enjoyed the flashback scene this year, how Nick and Schmidt met in college, where he just showed up in his dorm room, and Schmidt was eating Ramen.

K. Coachman Brooklyn Decker’s going to be coming up as another guest star that you guys are competing for. Is she just there for the one episode, or is that something that your character and her are going to continue for a little bit?

M. Greenfield As far as I know, she’s there for the one episode. She was fantastic. She was so good. She was with us all week, and she was just—she was really, really, really funny and sweet and just so much fun to have on the show.

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Emily Gagne with TV Guide Canada.

E. Gagne I wanted you to take me through the process of getting ready to be fat Schmidt. How much time do you have to spend getting ready to put on that lovely fat suit that you have to wear?

M. Greenfield It’s about two hours in total. But the makeup artists that do it—this guy, Matthew Mungle, and then sometimes Clinton, his partner, they’re just the best. And it’s kind of nice. I just enjoy kind of hanging out with them. It’s like going to dinner or having coffee with a friend every couple weeks. Like, Mungle … up, and I’ll be like, “Hey, Matthew. How’ve you been, man?” And they’re always working on some cool movie. Like they just did this Lee Daniels movie—I think in Atlanta. I’m always, “So tell me about it. How’s Forrest Whitaker?” It’s just fun.

E. Gagne Is there going to be a lot more of fat Schmidt coming up in more flashbacks to Schmidt in the next couple episodes?

M. Greenfield Not that I remember. No.

E. Gagne Okay. Cool.

M. Greenfield But I mean, there might be some coming up. I just don’t know about it.

Moderator Our next question will come from the line of Colleen Pinto with the Voice of

C. Pinto Do you have any plans for the Golden Globes, or are they just sort of by the seat of—?

M. Greenfield Well, I like to dress up. I like to put on a spiffy outfit. So that I’m excited about. I’m excited about when the show starts to end, and you can kind of loosen up your bowtie and unbutton like the first two, and let the bowtie hang loose. That’s always a cool look. Like you’re on the cover of the mover Diner. That’s exciting.

It’s going to be a great night. You get to celebrate the fact that you have a job and that you’re working; that it’s going well and that people are responding to you. I plan on dancing quite a bit.

C. Pinto Awesome. You have serious moves?

M. Greenfield I just have some party moves. Just straight up party moves.

C. Pinto Nice. Well, everyone in the cast really has a lot of chemistry. Is there anyone that you click with more, or that you enjoy doing scenes with more than anyone else?

M. Greenfield I certainly enjoy all the stuff I do with Hannah. We have a really good time together. And Jake Thompson and I are always really happy to be together, just ‘cause—for whatever reason, we’re not together a lot on the show. We don’t have a lot of storylines where it’s just me and him. We usually do like—maybe two or three a season. So, when we get the opportunity to kind of just have a one-on-one scene it’s a lot of fun.

C. Pinto Nick and Schmidt are my husband’s two favorite characters; he pretty much only watches for you two. Like literally, he’ll be like sitting there in like a catatonic state and all of a sudden you guys will be on, and he’ll be like—on the floor, crying laughing. I think there should be more Schmidt and Nick.

M. Greenfield I’m with you.

C. Pinto It’s a bromance made in heaven, really.

M. Greenfield I’m with you. It’s the Odd Couple.

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Monique Jackson with

M. Jackson I have two quick questions. Your character, Schmidt, can you relate to him in any way?

M. Greenfield Of course. I think I definitely can. I think there are and there have been many moments in my life where I’ve tried just a bit too hard, and I think Schmidt is kind of settling into himself. And I think anybody can kind of relate to that. And he’s having difficulty kind of being comfortable in his own skin and as a result, puts a little too much effort into everything.

M. Jackson And another quick question is—does comedy, being so funny on the show, does it come easy to you? Or is more difficult to be funny?

M. Greenfield I think the writing is so good that it’s not terribly difficult. I approach every scene just as an actor, and luckily they write really funny scenes so I just kind of go in and play the scene and then we … a comedy which is not very difficult with these people.

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Dani Lyman with

D. Lyman Well, I have just a couple questions for you. The first one – Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, so what kind of dating or love advice do you think Schmidt would give to people who are single on the holiday?

M. Greenfield Listen, no more—wait, what would Schmidt do? What would Schmidt say?

D. Lyman Yes, what would Schmidt say? Yes.

M. Greenfield Oh, gosh. Well, I think—we did an episode last year about Valentine’s Day where it was like, he thinks it’s for the amateurs. It’s amateur day. He doesn’t even go out on Valentine’s Day. But I suppose if he were going out, I would say – today is the day for ultimate honesty.

D. Lyman That’s what he would tell people who are single? Looking for a date?

M. Greenfield Yes.

D. Lyman Ultimate honesty. Okay.

M. Greenfield Ultimate honesty. I think that’s a good move. You go out, you go—listen, I can’t believe I’m out on Valentine’s Day and I’m single. I’m out because I want to meet somebody and I feel like there’s probably other people who are out who want to meet people, too. And that’s why we’re both out together, and maybe we can go out again later this week and we could maybe have a date.

D. Lyman That’s good advice.

M. Greenfield And then that date turns to another date, and then all of a sudden you’re engaged and then you’re having babies and then you’re married, like me.

D. Lyman Speaking of which, what does a typical date night for you and your wife look like?

M. Greenfield Well, lately it’s been—if we’re lucky we get the baby down at about 8:30-8:45 and then we get into the Screeners, into the Academy Screeners, and we watch all the movies. And that’s heaven. Especially if you’ve got a good movie. Man.

D. Lyman And you’re such a charmer on the show, does that translate usually—like does that translate from your real life? Are you that way naturally, or do you need a little help with the ladies?

M. Greenfield Charming?

D. Lyman Yes. Obviously, right now you’re charming. Growing up, were you the same?

M. Greenfield I don’t know. You’d have to ask somebody else.

Moderator Our next question comes from the line of Kristen Maldonado with Fanhattan.

K. Maldonado My first question is, I was wondering if you could tell me a little bit about your new film, They Came Together, that you filmed this past summer?

M. Greenfield Oh my God. I’m very excited about this. David Wain and Michael Showalter wrote it. David directed it. It stars Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd who were about the biggest dream I could ever ask for to go work with. I would find myself in scenes with them and I would be like, just watching. I realized—I was like, you probably should pay attention to where you’re supposed to be in the scene and not just be going, “How are they doing this?” They just were two of the funniest people I’ve ever worked with. I played Paul’s brother, and it’s just one of the funniest movies. I had such a good time on it. It was a real blast.

K. Maldonado Do you know when it’s coming out?

M. Greenfield I don’t know. But I’m really excited about it. I hope soon.

K. Maldonado So, working on this film and, of course you work on New Girl, so what would you say—I don’t know if you would have a preference. Do you like working on TV shows better or working on film better?

M. Greenfield I don’t know. A lot of it’s all the same. I think the best days are the days where everything is clicking and it’s working and you’re having fun and you’re with the people that you really enjoy working with, and those days—whether it’s on a film or TV, are just heaven.

K. Maldonado Now, what do you watch on TV?

M. Greenfield What do I watch on TV? Well, we finished Homeland. And now, I’ve been trying to catch up on all the movies right now.

K. Maldonado What movies are you trying to catch up on?

M. Greenfield All the Academy movies. I’ve got to be knowledgeable about the awards, with award season. I can’t go into award season not knowing what these films are.

K. Maldonado Is there any one that you’re particularly like—I need to watch this! I need to watch this right now!

M. Greenfield Right now—I mean, we’ve watched a lot of them. So we’re deep in. I want to watch Rust and Bone. I have to watch Lincoln. I have not seen Lincoln yet. That’s about it. I want to watch Amour. I know it’s going to be devastating, but I’ve got to get in there.

K. Maldonado What about when you were younger? Did you have any favorite TV shows that you just always watched?

M. Greenfield Sure. Seinfeld. Friends. Seinfeld. I loved Cheers when I was younger. Still love it. Frazier. Frazier is a great show. Everybody Loves Raymond. Everybody Loves Raymond—now that I have a wife and a child, that show’s on a whole other level of genius.

K. Maldonado Yes, that show’s really awesome. In fact, the guy who created that actually went to my college, so he has all these references to my college throughout the show.

M. Greenfield Phil Rosenthal?

K. Maldonado Yes.

M. Greenfield Yes, he’s kind of a genius.

T. Adair That concludes our conference call with Max. Max, thanks for taking the time to do this this morning, and best of luck next weekend at the awards—

M. Greenfield Thank you.

T. Adair As a reminder, New Girl returns with new episodes Tuesday, January 8th at 9 p.m. Eastern/Pacific. Thank you and have a great weekend.

Moderator That does conclude our conference for today. Thank you for your participation and for using AT&T Executive Teleconference Service. You may now disconnect.

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