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Jennifer Coolidge (photo courtesy of Shearer PR)
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Actress Jennifer Coolidge Dishes on Hollywood, Reality TV & Upcoming Show

By Troy Maillis


Comedian/actress Jennifer Coolidge will headline the Miami Improv in Miami. Coolidge is known for her supporting roles in many comedy movies and guest spots on television. She is best known for playing "Stifler's mom"- the consummate "MILF," in the "American Pie" films, though she is also known for supporting parts in other films, including Hilary Duff's stepmother in "A Cinderella Story," and Paulette, the manicurist in "Legally Blonde" and its sequel. She recently spoke with Mark's List about her show, reality television and her frustrations with Hollywood.


So you’re coming to the Miami Improv.  What can we expect from your show?


I’m excited to get to some warm weather.  I talk about Hollywood and my frustrations with where Hollywood is going.  We have this strange “reality” television world out there that has become Los Angeles. I talk about all of the weird celebrity behavior I witness and events I go to. I pretty much go after everyone who deserves it—self important celebrities who say the most ridiculous things to get themselves more attention.


I also change up the show depending on the city and tie in observations about that particular city. In certain cities people will come up to me and say the craziest stuff because they recognize me from the movies.  I like to talk about that stuff.


What bothers you the most about the current state of Hollywood?


"If I watch 'Tyra' I don’t want to hear about girls who eat sofa cushions or chalk or comet."
There are all of these reality shows out there with no message for a kid to educate themselves.  A lot of these “celebrities” on reality shows haven’t even finished high school. The shows have nothing to do with developing your mind—they're more about getting drunk and saying really dumb stuff on camera. I just feel like Hollywood has hit an all-time low. I want people to get bored with this sensationalism on television.  If I watch “Tyra” I don’t want to hear about girls who eat sofa cushions or chalk or comet.  This is a show that young girls are tuning in to. It’s just so bizarre that they can get a whole show out of stuff like that.  It’s almost like, “What’s the weirdest thing we can put on to get ratings?” I don’t think watching any of these shows helps anyone.  But it’s not like I’m reading from the podium in any of these comedy shows—my stuff is pretty filthy and crass, but I still feel like I have a morale compass where I at least acknowledge my own desperation or faults. 


Have you ever been approached to do a reality show?


I have, but I’m an actress and I don’t really want to play myself over and over. I don’t know what my show would be about—I don’t think I’m interesting enough right now [laughs].  When I watch reality television shows I just get really depressed. Young girls who watch “The Kardashians” are watching it thinking that these girls are living this glorified life when it’s not.  But there are some “reality” shows out there that are great like “Project Runway” where people do cool, creative things.  It’s just shows like “The Hills” and “The Kardashians” and “Jersey Shore” that don’t give kids anything to look up to and aspire to.  I don’t know how someone could watch “Jersey Shore” and not feel like a winner when comparing themselves to the people on the show.


You made the phrase “MILF” immensely popular in "American Pie."  Do you still get a lot of attention now as a result of being a MILF? Do you think you gave the real MILF’s out there someone to look up to?


Well there’s been a trilogy and there’s a new one in the works, which “Stiffler’s mom” will definitely be a part of. It’s a good movie for the younger generations to watch over and over.  Frankly, I’m single and it gets me a lot of dates that I probably would not otherwise have.  It’s absolutely been a positive thing. 


What do you think about older women being with younger men?


I think it’s a really good combo—I really do.  It’s way bigger in Europe, but I definitely think it’s the way to go. 


I read that doing comedy was like therapy for you.  Why is that?


It’s therapy in the way that you can express your point of view in front of a large group. If you can verbalize what a lot of other people are thinking it’s incredibly freeing.  I think celebrities get away with a lot.  When you tell the audience some of the stories you realize that a lot of them have caught the bullshit that some celebrities put out there.  



Another role as Paulette on Legally Blonde gained you lots of gay fans with the “bend and snap.”  Do you hang out with a lot of your gay fans?


I hang out with my gay fans in almost every city I go to and usually go to a good drag show or nightclub after the show, and I know there are plenty in Miami. I really liked Twist last time I was there. 


During your show, what do you want the audience to take away?  Do you just want them to have a good time and laugh?


That’s a really smart question. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m going for—I just really want to be entertaining and I want people to feel like they came out and had a great time. The one thing I do know is you can’t care too much whether people are going to like what you say. If you ever try to please anyone you end up pleasing no one.  Sometimes it’s beyond my control—sometimes people just don’t feel the same way you do about a certain topic; but hopefully they can relate.  It’s what I talked about before with comedy being therapy. 


Do you plan on seeing any of the sites while you are in South Florida? Do you like to unwind during the day?


There was a great wine and food show on the beach last time I was there. During the day I just check the calendars to find the most interesting things that are going on.  I just really enjoy myself when I’m in Miami—it’s a very friendly city and great shopping!


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