In her new series, New Girl, premiering tonight on Fox, Zooey Deschanel plays a girl in an emotional whirl. Fresh from a breakup with her boyfriend, Deschanel's character, Jessica Day, makes a bold move... by shacking up with three guys she met Craigslist-style.
"The fact is, she's a girl who has had a boyfriend since she was 18. Then she's dumped and her entire life changes, which is what happens in life," the doe-eyed actress with long, glossy dark hair says. "So many of my friends have gone through it. You think your life is going one way and then someone gets dumped. It's about picking yourself up and moving on. You never know what or who could be waiting around the corner."
Deschanel, 31, best known for her work in Almost Famous, Elf and the recent Our Idiot Brother, has encountered plenty of things waiting around the corner. In addition to her new role, she's delving deeper into the music industry with a new solo CD due out at Christmas. Why not rock? After all, she lives in a musical home with her husband, Death Cab for Cutie's Benjamin Gibbard. Enough About Rashida Jones and Zooey Deschanel's Kiss Already!
When we met with Deschanel one weekday morning, she had just finished a table read for New Girl. She's almost giddy with excitement about tonight's debut after Glee. "I can't even really explain to you what a good time I'm having these days," she tells us. "I love doing the work on my series. It's just plain exciting to do what you love. If you have that chance in life then you're very, very lucky."
Here's what the bubbly actress had to tell us about her exciting career, her romantic life behind-the-scenes and more:
First things first: What's a great romantic night for you and Ben?
We're homebodies! Oh my God, I don't understand how people go out at night. We're like, "Why go out at night?" Just relax at home with each other. It's much more romantic than going to some club. Zooey Deschanel's Wedding Details
Is that why we never see you two in the gossip columns after a big night on the town?
If I'm singing, I can't go out. I need the sleep. My voice needs to rest. I would forget my lines if I went out all the time. Of course, I've seen people go out and work. I'm like, "I don't understand." It's crazy.
Tell us about your new TV alter ego Jessica in New Girl.
She's really a treat to play. I love that she is trying hard to move on. I also liked that she's not feminine in that she wears Pink all the time. I still had to get my girly girl on. She's just very emotional and comfortable in her skin, although she's basically an awkward person socially. Above all, she just tries really hard. The strange thing is she moves in with three guys who are her opposites, so it makes for a very interesting character study.