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By Suzanne

Interview with Jim Rash of "Community" on NBC 11/4/10

Jim Rash seems like a very nice guy, a regular guy. Granted he's not a big star yet, but he is very down-to-earth.  Honestly, he reminds me a bit of Andy Dick without the obnoxious streak.  Anyway, he does a great job on his show and this was a very exciting interview.

"Community" Airs Thursdays 8/7

NBC UNIVERSAL
Moderator: Leslie Schwartz
November 4, 2010 2:00 pm CT

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by. Welcome to The Community Press and Media Call with Jim Rash. At the question-and-answer session, if you have a question, please press the 1 followed by the 4 on your telephone keypad. And if ever you need to reach an operator, please dial star 0.
As a reminder, this conference is being recorded Thursday, November the 4th, 2010.
I would now like to turn the call over to Leslie Schwartz. Please go ahead.

Leslie Schwartz: Hi everybody. Thank you for joining us on todayís call with our favorite Dean Pelton, Jim Rash, and we will of course be talking about the Webisode which premiered this morning at NBC.com. And, I just wanted to ask you if you were referencing the Facebook site? Itís http://www.Facebook.com/NBCCommunity, and I will now open it up to questions for Jim.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder, to register for a question, please dial 1, 4 on your telephone keypad. And our first question comes from the line of Jamie Steinberg with Starry Constellation Magazine. Please go ahead.

Jamie Steinberg: Hey. Itís a pleasure to speak with you.

Jim Rash: Hi. And, itís nice to talk to you.

Jamie Steinberg: You have great comedic timing. Is it something thatís natural for you, or do you have to work at it?

Jim Rash: I wish it was natural. I donít know. Maybe it comes from you know, just growing up with - being super popular in high school, and you just learn to use it. As far as like training and stuff, I mean itís honing. And, I - you know, I got to Los Angeles.

Most everythingís sort of got honed I guess - got honed at the place at The Groundlings Theater. Iíve been there since - for like - Iíve been active at The Groundlings for like 11 years. So, that was probably my training outside of college and stuff.

But, I think it was probably instinctual at some point along the way.

Jamie Steinberg: Well, you make a lovely Lady Gaga. Do you have any...

Jim Rash: Oh, thank you.

Jamie Steinberg: ...input into the antics of your character?

Jim Rash: Iím sorry. What was that again?

Jamie Steinberg: I said do you have any input into the antics of your character?

Jim Rash: Of Dean Pelton?

Jamie Steinberg: Yes.

Jim Rash: Yes. He - one of the sort of fun things thatís been on this ride since the first season is sort of the added stuff theyíve sort of - to Dean, and sort of the secrets weíre starting to find out about him from Dalmatian fetishes to his over curiosity of Jeff Winger and - and seemingly I - as I understand down the pike, there should be some more fetishes that might come his way to add to it.

And then as far as the Lady Gaga fascination, I donít know if it was a fascination or just a chance to show off his legs; I donít know, or my legs.

Jamie Steinberg: And, a bit of an ABBA interest came out as well.

Jim Rash: Yes. Yes. And then, ABBA and clearly recording himself listing things he needed to do. But yes, an ABBA fascination. Yes.

I love the fact that weíre not quite sure what - yet what goes on in his personal life, but I look forward to one day having some kind of reveal to that. Whether we want to know it or not, I donít know.

Jamie Steinberg: Yes. He seems to be prone to TMI.

Jim Rash: Yes. Yes. Oh, definitely. I think heís got a very social awkwardness, meaning no ability to filter what comes out of his mouth and then catch himself on it. So, I hope thereíll be more of that.

Jamie Steinberg: And just real quick. Youíre a part of Twitter. Why is that social network important for you in the promotion of things like the Webisodes, and with things you do, and with interaction with fans?

Jim Rash: You know, itís the - when I did the Twitter thing, it came through - at Groundlings, where we set up our Twitter accounts for the cast members so it would come on our Web sites, and I just had no idea, you know until I started doing that.

And just - I remember like - I guess Tweeting very minimally in the beginning, and all the sudden I was getting - I came home and - I think it was like Gmail account was filled with like you know, 100 emails and I donít know that many people that would be writing me. Just the notifications that people were following it. It was just sort of overwhelming, and I just feel itís obviously a huge way that people get announcements or you know, links to stuff. Itís pretty incredible that - how people use it you know.

So Iím pretty much a novice to it, so I would have to say Iím sort of learning and watching as I go. There are more experts at it than I am, thatís for sure.

Jamie Steinberg: Great. Thank you so much.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thank you.

Operator: And, our next question comes from the line of Nancy Harrington with Pop Culture Passionistas. Please go ahead.

Nancy Harrington: Hi Jim. Thanks for your time today.

Jim Rash: Hey, how are you.

Nancy Harrington: Good thanks. How are you doing? Iím actually here with my sister Amy whoís my writing partner.

Jim Rash: Whatís that again?

Nancy Harrington: I said Iím actually here with my sister Amy whoís my writing partner.

Jim Rash: Oh, okay. Nice.

Nancy Harrington: And, weíre big fans of the show and of you.

Jim Rash: Oh, okay.

Nancy Harrington: So, we were wondering, besides the timing, what did you learn from your experience at The Groundlings that you applied to your work on Community?

Jim Rash: Well you know, certainly you know I started working at The Groundlings, and mainly to take improv classes, you know. And, I think those were beneficial not just with acting, Community, but also in writing because I enjoy doing that as well. I just - and then - and Community, even though I have to say itís like - you know, the writing staff is incredible and Dan Harmon had such a vision that although there is certainly always room for a little improv while weíre shooting, itís a lot on the page.

So - but, I would say that Groundlings has been definitely influential for me just across-the-board, you know, certainly in peoplesí fascination in the growing world of improv and that kind of stuff.

Nancy Harrington: Cool.

And weíve noticed on your Twitter that it seems like you get recognized as Moby quite a bit...

Jim Rash: Yes.

Nancy Harrington: ...so we were wondering if you talked to the producers about Moby coming on to play your evil twin, or if thereís any plans to...

Jim Rash: I donít know. I think that would be a great idea. I donít know when the - I guess when I started maybe shaving my head more, or something, but the Moby stuff started awhile ago, as well as - I also got some Steve Soderbergh once, if I have a hat on.

But yes, I - there was a long - not too long ago, there was a part on like I think How I Met Your Mother where they were looking for a Moby look alike, and then another Moby look alike that I know - a guy by the name of - an actor JP Manoux ended up doing it. So, there are a number of us out there, so hopefully it would be cool to see if Moby would even come to do that.

Nancy Harrington: That would be excellent. Well, thanks for your time today. Good luck with the rest of the season.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thanks so much.

Nancy Harrington: Thank you. Bye.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of David Martindale with Crown Features. Please go ahead.

David Martindale: Thank you. Hi Jim. I love your show.

Jim Rash: Hey. How are you.

David Martindale: Iím good, thanks. I love the show. Youíre really quite wonderful in it.

Jim Rash: Oh, thank you.

David Martindale: And actually, the character that you referred to that was in How I Met Your Mother, they called him not-Moby because...

Jim Rash: Oh, is that it?

David Martindale: ...he turned out that he wasnít Moby. And when you started up with Community, my girlfriend and I started referring to you as not-not Moby.

Jim Rash: Okay. Iím two degrees more away, or...

David Martindale: You bet. You are not-not Moby.

Jim Rash: Yes.

David Martindale: Not that that is important, itís just a (unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: No. But you know (unintelligible).

David Martindale: What were your expectations for this character when you were cast? Did you know that this - that the Dean was going to be this crazy? This weird?

Jim Rash: No. Itís funny just because I didnít - you know, when we shot the pilot, I was cast I think you know, pretty late in the - I think they had already started shooting. And at the time you know, it was just a guest star on a pilot that you didnít know whether it would be picked up. And then you know, they always talk as a possible recurring type thing. And then once the show got picked up, I just had no idea how much they would end up using the Dean.

And, nor did I know where we were going - you know, or what was going to - and I think it all sort of began the most when we - with the Dalmatian video as far as like getting into some weird stuff as soon as that You Tube thing and wondering if that was going to awaken something in me. I think that just sort of - they just ran with that a little bit.

And - but, I definitely think it evolved because even in the pilot, itís sort of funny if you actually look back at the pilot. In the very beginning - Iím wearing a wedding ring in the pilot, and I always said that sort of just disappeared by the second episode that I did. So either he was briefly married or he puts that on - the ring on just for a little bit - for peopleís first day of school. I donít know. But, heís definitely evolved and itís been a lot of fun.

David Martindale: Yes. And when you get a new script and you learn these new things about the Dean, do you find yourself saying you know, ďReally? Dalmatian costume? Seriously?Ē Or, do you rejoice because itís so silly, or both?

Jim Rash: I rejoice in anything thatís very fun and specific, you know. I think itís - I think thatís the fun of it you know, and seeing where youíre going. But, I canít say I donít have those moments when Iím like, ďWhat?Ē You know, but I think itís more a joyous what as in just along for that part of the ride.

So, I - no, I - you know, Iím always excited when thereís a surprise or something very specific theyíve started to get in their minds, because they you know, start to think of things and lay some groundwork for down the road, which sort of started with that video of the Dalmatians and ended with obviously the finale with Dalmatians in costumes. So, they let it grow.

David Martindale: Yes. And, what do you think of the fact that Community the TV show has embraced you know, these other - you know, this other medium -- the Internet -- to expand the - its viewership, or maybe not expand the viewership, but expand the fanís appreciation for the show that they already loved?

Jim Rash: Well I think you know, it becomes sort of instinctual, especially when you have like these - you know, a show that by all means you know, gets a cult following, and many shows out there.

And I think the Internet and various Web sites and this kind of community from blogs to everything is just - is ripe with people who become fans of stuff, and itís a great community to nurture for whatever it is - you know, for whatever show, and I think itís a powerful thing. And certainly to give a voice to shows that are - you know, are special and have a good solid following, thatís a great place to nurture them, you know.

David Martindale: Cool. So, thank you so much. Itís been a pleasure.

Jim Rash: Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Jamie Ruby with Sci-Fi Vision. Please go ahead.

Jamie Ruby: Hi. Thanks so much for doing our call today.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Absolutely.

Jamie Ruby: So, you started to talk a little bit about you know, the beginning and the pilot. Can you tell us kind of how you got involved in the very beginning in the project?

Jim Rash: It was nothing more than you know, I got an audition for it you know through an agent - through my agent. So, it really was like everyone else, just a chance to audition for them. So, it pretty much just worked out.

Jamie Ruby: Okay. Now, you were talking about all the different crazy things he does and is different - you know, idiosyncrasies and everything. If you could you know write something about him - about your character, what would you choose to have happen on screen?

Jim Rash: Oh. Interesting. If I could write something for him. Well, I would - I donít know if I know exactly what would happen, but like I said, I would like to see where this guy - where Dean - Iíd like to see his home life, because I - in upcoming episodes, Iím particular there late. Iím always curious if I go anywhere or do I end up just staying there? I donít know.

But, I would love to see and discover what his personal life is like if I were asked to write something. I donít know what I would go with though, because I do like it being sort of - you know, still sort of question everything about his personal life from what heís in to, to you know all that kind of stuff. So...

Jamie Ruby: Okay. Would you ever consider writing or directing for the show though?

Jim Rash: Oh, if theyíd have me. Oh. Yes. I would love it. I mean, I would love to certainly - to write down the road, and I certainly sort of - I definitely on the set sort of watch and try to learn from our various directors weíve had, just sort of observe. Because itís just a great opportunity when youíre shooting to sort of educate yourself on that stuff for down the road, for hopes for that kind of thing.

Jamie Ruby: Okay. Great. Thank you so much.

Jim Rash: Absolutely.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Matt Carter with Examiner.com. Please go ahead.

Matt Carter: Hey Jim. How are you doing?

Jim Rash: Good. How are you?

Matt Carter: Iím pretty great. Well on the show, Pelton kind of has this funny sort of - almost self-entitlement about him when it comes to his job, and sometimes when it comes to dealing with some of the students. I mean, how do - when you picture Pelton - I mean, how do you think he fancies himself? Do you think he thinks of himself as a sort of hero, crusader? I mean, what do you think?

Jim Rash: I think he does. I think he is a guy who at his core really wants this school to be successful. And, heís like - I think he fancies that this community college can be like any - as you know, he says said sarcastically last year, any of those real colleges that people choose to transfer to after two years.

I think he wants people to stay. I think he believes that this place can be just as great as the big colleges. So although, I think that you know obviously, makes a lot of missteps. I think that his heart is in the right place and his desire.

It was a while ago - well when we first started, I remember Dan Harmon, the creator, was sort of in his mind early on was - felt like I probably did go to some - itís possible I went to some Ivy League school and that Dean didnít have the college experience that he felt that he deserved. And has been you know, sort of hell bent on making Greendale - having his college experience the way he wants to have it. So, that was how he always saw it.

Matt Carter: All right. Well, how have you found shooting the Webisodes to be different than shooting the actual set with the full cast?

Jim Rash: It was the same in the sense of like you know, obviously on the same set. And actually, it was the most if not all the same crew was shooting that day, because we shot those during a hiatus week. So, that part of it felt the same you know. And it was fun obviously, because you know, Leonardís in one of those and - who I see quite a bit. I think heís on a number of episodes...

Matt Carter: Yes.

Jim Rash: ...and the Human Being. Even though Human Being sometimes - well, this time was a different person. It rotates. I think there have been two or three people who have inhabited that glorious costume to put - they always seem so comfortable in. But, it is a little weird, yes. You know, because weíre obviously - itís always going to feel a little different, but hopefully down the road we do some more and get some of the cast in there as well you know.

Matt Carter: Yes. Iíd love that. Well, if you ask any sort of Community fan what their - some of their favorite moments from the show are, theyíll either you know, tell you the paintball episode or even the Apollo 13 or (unintelligible) episode from last week. But just for somebody whoís not on the (unintelligible) any sort of specific episodes of moments that stand out for you?

Jim Rash: Well, I - you know, obviously those were a lot of fun to shoot. I think I would - yes, Iíd be partial to the - I just had so much fun shooting the Apollo 13 space bus episode personally. But I do - I will say that one of my favorite times - because it was only the second episode I was in after the pilot, was when - was the football one where I got to come in and ask Troy if he wanted to play football.

And, it was so much fun just because I - you know, that was the first time back for me, and you know - and having only - you know in the pilot I only appear in the beginning. So, it was fun to sort of - that - from that moment start fleshing out who that guy was. So, that one will always be something that was fun personally just to shoot - to explore that, you know.

Matt Carter: I do. Well, thanks a lot Jim. Really appreciate it.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Kristin Davis with Accidental Sexiness.com. Please go ahead.

Kristin Davis: Hey Jim. How are you?

Jim Rash: Good. How are you?

Kristin Davis: I am great. Thank you. Like yourself, I am from Charlotte, North Carolina.

Jim Rash: Oh, yes.

Kristin Davis: Yes. Woo. Exciting.

Jim Rash: But, thatís where Iím from.

Kristin Davis: Itís not - well, did you like it here?

Jim Rash: Well, I mean I grew up there and I - then I went to Chapel Hill and then I came out here.

Kristin Davis: Then you left.

Jim Rash: So, I have to - I love - I certainly like the nostalgia at least.

Kristin Davis: Thatís true. Itís not - itís gloomy today, but itís nice. We have four seasons and all, so you know - yes.

Jim Rash: Oh, yes.

Kristin Davis: Well, I wondering - since youíre from Charlotte, itís not - itís getting better recently, but itís not exactly a theater and acting friendly city. What got you started into acting and then theater and all?

Jim Rash: Well, other than you know what can only be called just super quality High School Theater which is did do. But, ended up doing - well, two things sort of for me started me towards what I wanted to do. One was a soon as I graduated from - I went to a school called Charlotte Latin School, in Charlotte...

Kristin Davis: Okay.

Jim Rash: ...and after I graduated from there, I really wanted to go to Chapel Hill. And, I just -- now the world will know -- my grades werenít great. Iíll confess that, and so I really wanted to - I went to a post-graduate year at a boarding school up in New Jersey called the Lawrenceville School.

And anyway, their theater program there was amazing, and I just sort of fell in love with that, and then carried through to Carolina. And then when I got out to L.A. with The Groundlings. So, it was sort that path I think was it really began, even though I did do some theater in - at Latin.

Kristin Davis: Okay.

Jim Rash: But, it really began probably for me up there at Lawrenceville.

Kristin Davis: Right. Right.

You had mentioned earlier like you'd enjoy if theyíd have you writing for Community. You did write recently, you and (Matt Saxon)...

Jim Rash: (Faxon), yes.

Kristin Davis: ...wrote The Descendents. (Unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: Yes. Well, it comes out - I think itís going to be next year...

Kristin Davis: Next year?

Jim Rash: ...next year around this time. I have a...

Kristin Davis: Itís got a few big name actors, right?

Jim Rash: Yes.

Kristin Davis: I think a guy named George Clooney?

Jim Rash: Yes. A little guy named George Clooney is in it. Yes, my writing partner (Matt Faxon) and I, along with (Alexander Payne), who actually also directed it, adapted this book called The Descendents, so that should come out next year. But yes, that was a great experience.

Iíve been writing - that also started with The Groundlings, and had written a couple of pilots and then a screen play as well as adapted one. So, thatís definitely a part of my life I want to continue and nurture outside of Community too, so...

Kristin Davis: Tell us how do you decide - like what made you decide to adapt just The Descendents, or how do you pick - like when you do something like adapting a book?

Jim Rash: Well, the - that - we - my - (Matt) and I had written a screenplay that got us noticed by (Alexander Payne) and his producing partner, (Jim Burke), and they actually just brought us in too, because they had optioned The Descendents. So, it really was like a read this book, you know come back and tell us what your take on it would be. And so luckily they liked what we had to say, so ended up writing and then working with (Alexander) on the final product. And, that was it.

So, it really - it was just something that sort of fell into our laps, you know.

Kristin Davis: Okay.

One more quick question. I know Community is only a 30 minute show, so itís great that theyíre doing these Webisodes because itís such a huge cast too, that...

Jim Rash: Yes.

Kristin Davis: ...you donít get to see a lot of them. Do you think maybe the Webisodes will go into the lives of some of the peripherals characters, like Star Burns and Leonard, and even more into your own?

Jim Rash: Yes. Well, I hope it will be a little bit of that, because I think one of the things thatís been really fun that Dan and everyone has put together is like even in little small things - I mean, even the larger parts of ancillary characters like you know, myself and Leonard, and Star Burns, and Rich is coming back. I think he was in the pottery class, he was in the Halloween again.

And then also like even little small parts here and there, you always notice the same people resurfacing, because they really wanted to feel like - obviously, like a regular school.

Kristin Davis: Right.

Jim Rash: You know, how you see some familiar faces. So, I think the Webisodes - at least so far, you know obviously Leonard is in one, and hopefully thereíll be some introductions and crossovers both ways I would hope. But, itís fun to explore the lives of all the people you see in these classes who might not be the regulars, you know.

Kristin Davis: Yes.

Jim Rash: So hopefully, thatíll - weíll get a little bit more of that.

Kristin Davis: Awesome. Well, thank you for your time.

Jim Rash: Absolutely.

Kristin Davis: Have a wonderful day.

Jim Rash: Yes. You too. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Troy Rogers with The Deadbolt.com. Please go ahead.

Troy Rogers: Hi Jim.

Jim Rash: Hey.

Troy Rogers: Now, I wanted to know as an actor in a comedy series, what does it mean for you to be on the same show as Chevy Chase?

Jim Rash: Oh, what - itís pretty great. I mean, you know a very - one of my first episodes back was just with him designing the human being, so it was pretty cool to come back to that, having just done the pilot at that point to have a little story line and one on one time with Chevy Chase.

So, it was a little intimidating that first you know, couple of days, just - but there was no need for that. He was very welcoming, so we had a lot of fun.

Troy Rogers: Right on.

Earlier, you were mentioning your school days. Throughout your education, have you ever met any (unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: Iím sorry. I couldnít hear you. What was that?

Troy Rogers: Sorry. Throughout your education, have you ever met any faculty members that were like Dean Pelton?

Jim Rash: Iím sorry. One more time. Iím having a hard time hearing you.

Troy Rogers: Sure. Throughout your school years, have you ever met a teacher like Dean Pelton?

Jim Rash: Oh, got you. Sorry about that. I donít know if I can say Iíve met someone quite like him in any of my school experience. Iím trying to think of anybody. But no, I donít know about someone who seems to infuse himself into the lives.

You know, itís sort of funny. I mean, obviously I - Dean always tracks down specifically Jeff in our (core), which is always funny that they always seem to hear the announcements first before the rest of the school body. But thatís sort of the design of the TV show, so itís a lot of fun, that he takes such a vested interest in this small study group. But, I donít think Iíve had anyone that would be that invasive from my past.

Troy Rogers: Okay. One more quick thing and then Iíll - if you were the Dean of a school like Glendale in real life, what type of facilities would you want? Like something along the line of a flight simulator?

Jim Rash: Along the lines of a what?

Troy Rogers: Of a flight simulator?

Jim Rash: Oh, yes. Yes. I fully - one of the things that Iíve always enjoyed that I think hopefully one day theyíll investigate is exactly what the social budget of Greendale is with - the Dean seems to spend a lot of money on dances and some pretty elaborate stuff.

So Iím - I think I would follow in his footsteps at least in that, because it seems to be a very entertaining approach to a Community College. They seem to have a lot of social activities and a lot of real big events. So, I would love to see his budget, or see someone crack down on his budget. Iíd probably embrace that.

Troy Rogers: Excellent. Thanks Jim.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Suzanne Lanoue with TV Megasite. Please go ahead.

Suzanne Lanoue: Hi, Jim. Nice to talk to you.

Jim Rash: Nice to talk to you. Thank you.

Suzanne Lanoue: I was going to ask you if there was anything else you can tell us about these Webisodes? Anything I could look forward to? How they came about and all that kind of thing.

Jim Rash: Well, the - we basically did you know, the Dean Peltonís sort of office hours, sort of what goes on with you know, some outside characters. And hopefully in the future, maybe some of our main characters will make an appearance. The Dean go about the day-to-day business.

So of these first three pretty much dealing with - which you can check out now obviously, but you know do a little sexual harassment issue with the human being. Deal with a little - well, personal wig toupee help from Leonard. And then, a little independent study - sort of intern who seems to take my - take our personal relationship a little further - different - read something into it.

But, it - you know, itís funny because I - they sort of - Iím not quite sure where they started as far as like the - with the idea to do it. You know, I sort of just got the - you know, the scripts came to me and they said we wanted to start doing these little Webisodes. So, I was really excited to do it. So hopefully, weíll continue (unintelligible).

Suzanne Lanoue: Okay.

Jim Rash: Thatís the first three at least. Yes.

Suzanne Lanoue: Okay. That sounds good.

When you were a kid now, did you do a lot of comedy stuff? Like acting up around the family and put on shows? I hear a lot of comics - comedians got their start that way.

Jim Rash: Yes. I know. I feel like itís a universal thing that they - everyone always seems to have done shows in their living room or something to get their start. But, I - I mean, I definitely remember doing again, some questionable but fun Childrenís Theater when I was a kid. You know, where you were most likely playing some kind of animal in some kind of small childrenís play. I think I was a Mallard Duck, but thatís - you know, thatís way before I had a right to say that I was into it.

But I - for me, it probably didnít get going until sometime late high school, early college you know.

Suzanne Lanoue: Okay. You were a late comedian (groomer).

Jim Rash: But, I think itís a - yes. I mean I think as a child, I definitely did the things (unintelligible) to class clown type thing at that time, but I donít know if I really was focused on anything until later, you know.

Suzanne Lanoue: Well yes, if you were class clown that probably is a good - thatís probably a good start there.

Jim Rash: Well, thatís where it started. Yes, I guess. I guess you get started there. Yes.

Suzanne Lanoue: And, you have to be comfortable (unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: But, I donít know how funny it was. It was high school and all.

Suzanne Lanoue: Well - actually, I was going to tell you - my husband is actually a Dean at a college. Not a Community College...

Jim Rash: Oh, really?

Suzanne Lanoue: Yes. I canít watch Community because - every time I watch a new TV show thatís about a college, Iím sitting there nitpicking you know.

Jim Rash: Yes. He brings it home already.

Suzanne Lanoue: Well, itís not - you know, TVís not real, so if you have any relation to the real thing and then youíre always comparing it to the TV version, and (unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: Right. Right. Right. The TV version of things.

Suzanne Lanoue: Itís like a doctor trying to - yes, a doctor trying to watch ER or something like that. Itís like you canít...

Jim Rash: Right. No. I hear you. I hear you. No, I...

Suzanne Lanoue: You canít enjoy it - sit back and enjoy it. You just sit there and nitpick the whole thing.

Jim Rash: Yes. You say, ďThatís not - that wouldnít happen.Ē No, I - itís the hyped version. I know my - before, just as I was born, my dad was actually a Dean at a college in Charlotte, so - not that I would know anything, so I have nothing to go on.

Suzanne Lanoue: Oh, okay. Did he...

Jim Rash: So, I just embrace it.

Suzanne Lanoue: Is he - I donít mean to be indelicate. Is he still around and you talk to him, or...

Jim Rash: Yes. Yes. No, he is...

Suzanne Lanoue: Oh, good.

Jim Rash: ...no longer - he is. He is not a Dean anymore, but he actually still works with the college, so...

Suzanne Lanoue: Oh, okay. So, he tells you when youíre messing up.

Jim Rash: Yes. Yes. I mean - yes, I think heís not going to nitpick, but yes, he would probably say, ďYes. Thatís probably a little heightened version.Ē

Suzanne Lanoue: Yes. Definitely.

What other comedies do you like to watch on television besides Community?

Jim Rash: I really - Iím a big fan of Itís Always Sunny In Philadelphia, and I also like obviously 30 Rock, and The Office as well, and I - (unintelligible) what else I watch. Well then as far as TV in general, I love - and I love Mad Men, so I threw that in there even though itís not comedy, but I love - I do like those other three as far as whatís on my DVR.

Suzanne Lanoue: All right. Well, thanks a lot. I appreciate you taking the time.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Lena Lamoray with lenalamoray.com. Please go ahead.

Lena Lamoray: Hi Jim. Itís great to speak with you.

Jim Rash: Hey. Nice to talk to you. Thank you.

Lena Lamoray: Youíre welcome. Whatís it like working with the cast of Community?

Jim Rash: Working with the cast you said?

Lena Lamoray: Yes.

Jim Rash: Oh, itís great. I - itís a really close group you know. I think that theyíve all bonded and are very welcoming to myself and then obviously even any other guest stars and new people along the way. And, there is just a lot of - itís fun to watch Joel, who is very quick witted and loves to tease people, and itís fun to watch him play around with Ken Jeong and as well as - and then Donald Glover obviously is another one that enjoys that as well.

So, itís a - it really is a fun set to be on when weíre working longer hours, it makes it go a little faster you know. So, very lucky.

Lena Lamoray: Thank you.

Now, how much say did you guys have in you know, your Halloween costumes?

Jim Rash: What was that again?

Lena Lamoray: How much say did the cast have in planning out the costumes for the Halloween episode?

Jim Rash: You know, I remember early we were shooting the Space Bus episode, and the writer Carrie, who wrote the Halloween episode, she was walking around and just asking peopleís ideas about what they would - had any ideas of what their character would be for Halloween.

I donít - I remember I said - at the time, I said - she had mentioned Lady Gaga, and I also said, ďOh, what about - if weíre going that route, like a Cruella De Vil because of the Dalmatian connection, but I donít think you could probably get that licensed,Ē so that would be a harder thing.

But Iím not sure if everyone got their picks, but everyone got asked you know. So Iím not quite sure what everyone answered, but they at least asked and then Iím sure the writers had either already ideas or better ideas than we came up with.

Lena Lamoray: How do you feel about Dean Pelton now as opposed to when you first began playing him?

Jim Rash: Well, itís always fun I think when - you know, on a series have had the privilege of going into its second season. So you know, of the series Iíve been on, this is probably the first where itís gone into - for me, this long where you get to sort of evolve.

But I - itís sort of fun to look back on the first season DVD and go - like see you know, the things that have sort of evolved since the very beginning. And then - you know because obviously all the characters have to grow in some capacity and you want a surprise.

I know thereís an episode coming up in probably a couple episodes - I donít know if in a couple weeks or a couple whatever - the two or so episodes, I had a lot of fun as the Dean sort of has a huge meltdown. So, it was a lot of fun to sort of find this new thing - this very highly emotional reaction to this event at this college and explore that. So, Iím all - you know, itís - Iím all for things you know, surprising us. So hopefully, thereíll be more along the way.

Lena Lamoray: Great. Iím loving the show. Thank you so much.

Jim Rash: Oh, thank you very much. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Sabrina Samuels with The Voice of TV. Please go ahead.

Sabrina Samuels: Hello. Congratulations on the show being picked up for the next few couple of episodes.

Jim Rash: Oh, thank you. Thank you. Very excited.

Sabrina Samuels: (Unintelligible), and in terms of the Webisodes, as a writer yourself, does writing for the Web actually interest you in possibly starting a project yourself?

Jim Rash: Iím really sorry. What was that again one more time?

Sabrina Samuels: I was talking in terms of Webisodes. As a writer, does that medium interest you (unintelligible)...

Jim Rash: Oh, yes. You know, we did - it has been. You know, through The Groundlings, the theater that Iím a part of, we actually did not so much - we did - we started one little Webisode thing, but more just like you know, exploring - doing more stuff on the Web, Web content you know. For awhile there, we did some stuff with Sony and I guess it was Crackle was there at the time.

But I do, both as a writer and would love to go further with that to do stuff, because itís such a great - you know, great place to you know control the material you want to do for stuff, you know.

Sabrina Samuels: Okay. (Unintelligible) - not the rival of the Community - that (unintelligible), do you know if thereís any plans to have an episode on that again, and then bring back Dean (Spike)?

Jim Rash: Yes. I hope so. We were definitely joking about how and possibilities of setting up another Greendale sort of City College type showdown from - you know, Dean to Dean and from college you know, to college. Itíd be a lot of fun. Iím hoping that weíll see something down the road.

Right now, I donít think that - you know, that I know of anything. But you know, I donít know. Could be. Iíd like it.

Sabrina Samuels: So, Iím just going back to your writing though. Do you - and (Matt Saxon), or maybe yourself by yourself, do you have any plans to maybe write any other kind of stuff for pilot - as a pilot - you know, a TV show?

Jim Rash: Yes. We just started - weíre working right now on a pilot for HBO. We had pitched an idea over there, so we are just in the early stages of writing right now. And then, weíre also trying to work on - we had written an original a few years back that had gotten some attention, it was called The Way Back, and it was - you know, we had written it around the time when it was just you know, a lot of things were happening as far as the economy.

And so making you know, these smaller movies was a challenge you know. So, weíre hoping that we can get back to that you know, as things pick back up and these movie slates pick up a little bit.

But in the meantime, I think weíre going to work on this HBO thing, and then you know hopefully, write another original screenplay. So, itís sort of like a - certainly a side passion that we have, so we just continue to do that.

Sabrina Samuels: Okay. Well, thanks very much for talking to me.

Jim Rash: Yes. Thank you.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Brian Cantor with Headline Planet. Please go ahead.

Brian Cantor: Hi Jim. How are you?

Jim Rash: Good. How are you?

Brian Cantor: Iím doing well. Thanks.

So, I just wanted to know (unintelligible) you've contributed you know, to some great comedies, you know, as a good character actor, a good supporting you know role. Whatís it like working on a show that really seems to go out of its way to value that ensemble? I mean, you have Joel McHale, you have Chevy Chase, and yet so much of the show seems to be about giving you know, the other characters a chance. I mean, you have all the (Oped) and Troy stuff, now you have the Webisodes for around your character.

I mean, whatís that like from your perspective, getting that real opportunity to not just support but also really shine in your own right?

Jim Rash: Yes. You know, itís really been great to be on a series that has really embraced all the voices of all the characters you know. Itís like so often, you - and Iíve certainly been on them too. Itís like you know, you have funny stuff to do. You just sort of just pop in and then you pop out and youíre not sometimes integral to the plot.

But, the writers of Community specifically have been so great about really embracing the idea of their core cast. But not just that, but like outside and from guest stars too, to always - even in some of these bigger sort of splashy episodes that weíve done, you know where - you know, from - specifically even Modern Warfare is probably the best example with the paintball.

Itís like even when all this insanityís going on, you know Dan and the writers laid in some kind of character growth in it, which is always such a huge challenge, but itís pretty honorable and thatís what theyíre going for.

And then - and especially to squeeze in the amount of time you have in these 30 minute - you know, not even 30 minutes for a half hour comedy. And - but, I will say going specifically to your question that yes; itís just been great that they sort of spread the wealth so to speak, but yet at the same time, you know keep everyone involved when it is sort of focused on one character you know, which is nice.

Brian Cantor: Absolutely. And then also, I mean it seems like everyone you know from NBC to most of the media, (unintelligible) a large group of fans really wants Community to succeed. And, I think the Webinars seems to be another way to really patch into that quirky, tech savvy young adult audience that probably isnít always watching TV as much as you know, maybe the older crowd would be. But really, seems to be on par - on the ball with the kind of humor that you know, Community goes after. The kind of writing, the kind of you know acting where...

So, I mean it really seems like another great way to write trying to extend that brand and really bring extra eyeballs to Community. Now given that, I mean is that putting any pressure on you knowing that not only are these Webisodes a way for you as an actor to establish yourself as one of our top you know character actors out there, but also kind of a way to provide extra channels for promoting Community as a whole?

I mean, do you look at it from that sort of conscious standpoint, or is it more just a matter of Iím just out there doing the best I can and whatever happens happens?

Jim Rash: Now youíre putting me in my head. I hope I rise to the occasion. I do think itís a great way to broaden your being seen, to expand sort of the people that know about the show and watch the show. And, it is - I guess for me, itís I donít know if I feel so much pressure as much as just honored to have the opportunity to sort of - to expand the life outside of just the TV show.

Because I mean, itís like - you know, obviously you have you know, Joel and Donald, and all these people who are - have you know, huge outside stuff through which theyíre also bringing it to the table you know, from Joel with Soup, and Donald with his standup and his writing as well. Iím just using them as examples, but itís like everyone working so hard to like really focus the attention on Community in different ways. So, Iím hoping that the Webisodes will do that as well, you know.

Brian Cantor: Absolutely. No. And, I defiantly have caught a few of them and they definitely seem pretty good so far, so congratulations on that. And, congratulations on the extra episodes as well, and thanks a lot for taking the time.

Jim Rash: Absolutely. Thank you.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder to register for a question, you may dial 1, 4.

Our next question comes from the line of Jamie Ruby with Sci-Fi Vision. Please go ahead.

Jamie Ruby: Hi again.

Jim Rash: Hi.

Jamie Ruby: So, what has been your - what is your ultimate dream role? Or maybe, is there something specific you want to work with that you havenít yet?

Jim Rash: Yes. Interesting question. You know, my - to go back to the - my writing partner, (Matt) and I. You know, before Community happened, and heís an actor as well, so weíve - you know, weíve always jumped into pilot season as actors, and at the same time weíve developed a few pilots now and then. And, weíve always you know, sort of written for ourselves you know. And, I think the voices that - you know, our dynamic as friends and writing partners was something we always were trying to get in there, which is probably closer to us.

So, I donít know if I can describe me very well or you know - but, I do know that the voice that we put into our writing and stuff, that Iíd always like to one day be able to you know showcase in some capacity you know.

So, I think thatís why we just keep doing this, because Iíve always been - and happily so, like on these - whether from you know, multi-camera to single camera, and some stuff in the movies - you know, I guess a ďcharacter actorĒ which I enjoy, but they were always sort of interesting, fun personalities to play and characters you know, but, were a little far from me.

So, itíd always be fun to just to you know, express my voice some place down the road you know, which will probably come from us writing I guess, so weíll see.

Jamie Ruby: Okay. What do you find the hardest part about working on Community?

Jim Rash: The hardest part? Well you know, itís - and itís like with anything. It is - it can be some long hours you know, but I - it doesnít necessarily feel like it, but you know to do some of the bigger shows that weíve done, you know from the paintball to the zombie Halloween. It takes some hours you know, because theyíre really creating a look that is a lot like a small film and that takes time.

And so - happily so, because the product comes out the way you get really excited about it. But with that comes - you know, youíre going to be there. You might watch the sun come up sometimes, you know.

Jamie Ruby: Okay. Well, thank you very much.

Jim Rash: Absolutely.

Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Shawn Dailey with Fancast.com. Please go ahead.

Shawn Dailey: Hey there, Jim. How are you?

Jim Rash: Hey, good. How are you?

Shawn Dailey: Fine, thank you. Congratulations on the success of the show.

Jim Rash: Thank you very much.

Shawn Dailey: Community is obviously developing a very large and ravage fan base, and Iím wondering if you could just tell us a quick story maybe about one of your more memorable recent experiences with some of your fans?

Jim Rash: Oh, God. You know, I didnít think I would get recognized as - you know, as much. In the beginning, I thought, ďOh, you know this is a recurring character,Ē or whatever, but I donít know if this was like the most unique, but I remember just being in a very crowded movie theater, and just in the lobby waiting to go into this movie, and there was just like this group of teenage boys. And it was just funny to me because all - like all of them had their girlfriends just sitting on their laps waiting for a movie.

They didnít get up or anything; they just yelled from across the room, like, ďHey man. Itís Dean! Dean Pelton.Ē And, I just thought, ďWell, thereís my fan base.Ē Finally, I got those - the teen boys with their girlfriends are really into my character. But they didnít really come over or anything, but it was just the fact that they yelled across the room. But, I - hey, I was - Iíll take it you know.

Shawn Dailey: And, were you wishing at the time that it was the teen girls that were screaming for you instead?

Jim Rash: Yes. Maybe that would - well, I just wish everyone sort of jumped in, but it was just sort of funny to me that you know - like they - just life went on, and they just wanted to yell that out across a crowded room you know.

Shawn Dailey: Exactly. Well, you know when youíre on a popular show like this, you become a famous actor, that your private life becomes property of your fans as well. So, can you share something with us about - you know, about your life away from the show? And, what we might be a little bit surprised to learn about you.

Jim Rash: We can learn about me? Well...

Shawn Dailey: Or, you can make something up if you donít have anything good.

Jim Rash: What can I make up? I donít even know. I donít really have I think any great - outside of that, Iíve already mentioned you know, what I sort of do and have been a part of, and as far as L.A. on The Groundlings side of things and on the writing side of things, and then on the personal - Iím just a dog owner you know.

Shawn Dailey: Not a Dalmatian (unintelligible)?

Jim Rash: Yes. Itís not a Dalmatian. I had a Chesapeake Bay Retriever and Iím getting ready to become another dog very soon after the New Year I hope. But letís see - thatís not much of an interesting tidbit. But, thatís what the personal life is right now.

Shawn Dailey: Okay. Are you hoping maybe these Webisodes lead to a spin off for you?

Jim Rash: Well, yes. I donít know about a spin off, but I certainly hope that it leads to some more Webisodes and exploring it, because Iím happy where Iím at at this point. I donít know if the world can endure a whole show centered around a Dean Pelton. I mean maybe Iím wrong, but thatís an interesting guy to like - we might learn too much. Itís probably good that we learn him in doses.

But, itís just been a - you know, a fun ride and hope it continues, so Iíll take what...

Shawn Dailey: Iím sure you could make it interesting for us.

Jim Rash: Whatís that?

Shawn Dailey: I said, Iím sure you could make it interesting for us.

Jim Rash: No. I would imagine it would be very interesting you know, if we went - and maybe Dean Pelton you know, moves to another city and his lifelong dream of raising Dalmatians. There we go. We got a show.

Shawn Dailey: And thatís just - and lastly before you go, what else do you like to use the Internet for, besides Webisodes and reading of course all of our wonderful Web pages?

Jim Rash: Yes. Well you know, other than - I just - other than watching videos and the viral stuff, and from You Tube to whatever, and then I certainly do surf it that way. You know, looking for whatever. Whatever is the funniest stuff out there, itís - and then thereís plenty you know.

Shawn Dailey: All right. Thank you very much.

Jim Rash: Absolutely.

Operator: There are no further questions at this time. I would now turn the call back to you Ms. Schwartz, for any closing remarks.

Leslie Schwartz: Great. Thank you. Thanks everyone again for your support. We will have a transcript available tomorrow, which I can send around to everyone. And if anyone needs the links with the Webisodes - the (unintelligible) codes, please let me know and I can send those to you as well. Thanks so much.

Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, that does conclude the conference call for today.


Dean Peltonís Office Hours

-----------Episode 1-------------

Office Hours: Pamphlet Serious

Dean Pelton mediates an exchange between the Human Being and a GCC
cheerleader.

LINK: http://www.nbc.com/community/video/clips/1257793/

-----------Episode 2-------------

Office Hours: Hair Piece

Dean Pelton seeks Leonard's advice.

LINK: http://www.nbc.com/community/video/clips/1257794/

-----------Episode 3-------------

Office Hours: Independent Study Assistant

Dean Pelton's consoles his assistant after a misunderstanding.

LINK: http://www.nbc.com/community/video/clips/1257795/

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