Sarah Wright has been modeling since she was in high school and acting since she unexpected nabbed a role in the Fox sitcom "Quintuplets" alongside Andy Richter. (It only lasted one season, but still not bad for your first acting gig.) She's since done a plethora of work for television ("Parks and Recreation", "Mad Men") and film (THE HOUSE BUNNY, TOUCHBACK), but her most recent role as the lovable Nicole in the raucous R-rated comedy 21 & OVER is surely going to be her most enjoyed to date.
I recently had the opportunity to speak to Sarah (who is incidentally married to actor Eric Christian Olsen), who in our brief chat together gave me the intel on her time spent modeling in Japan (and going to clubs in a sports bra), her past tendency to eat pizza rolls at the crack of dawn, and of course, who her celebrity crush is. (Hint: He's been mentioned in this column before. And he's dead.)
How would you describe your character Nicole in 21 & OVER?
She's an easy going free-spirit. She's a girl in college who dreams about traveling the world, and she's the kind of person who thinks every experience is a good one, whether it's actually good or bad. I felt like I related to her; when I was in high school I lived in Japan for a while because I was modeling there. And then I went to live in Greece when I was 18-years-old and modeled there; I did a lot of traveling around Europe. That was kind of my thing until college, and eventually I got into acting. So her free-spirit thing was something I could relate to.
You're a real world traveler!
It was the weirdest thing: I was living in Kentucky, doing a little modeling stuff here and there, and someone said to me, "You should go model in Japan!" And then this opportunity came my way and I was like, "Okay yeah!" My parents weren't so sure about it at first, my dad helped me get settled in. I lived there for about four months and did a semester there. And because I did that, I totally got hooked on traveling, so afterward I wanted to go all over.
What's the coolest place you've been to?
Japan is pretty amazing. My favorite place that I've ever been is the Amalfi Coast in Italy; it's the most gorgeous place ever. If I could live anywhere in the world, it would be there.
In regards to 21 & OVER, have you ever gotten into a crazy, drunken situation like the one the lead character, Jeff Chang, gets himself into?
(Laughs) Not really, nothing where I was so embarrassed. I actually don't get embarrassed. I'm super clumsy, stupid things happen to me all the time, so I've lost the ability to get embarrassed when something dumb happens. But when I was 16 or 17 in Japan, we had a couple of crazy nights. There was one time when all of us models went to a club just dressed in Adidas pants, sports bras, bandanas, waving glow sticks. Like, what year did we think it was that we were doing this? It was one of those nights, but nothing like Jeff Chang goes through!
Typically, are you a girl who likes going out and partying or do you prefer the quiet night at home?
I prefer the quiet nights. My favorite nights are when I go out with my girlfriends and just eat dinner and have wine. I used to, when I was younger and living in Chicago, go out all the time, stay out super late until the sun was coming up and then go to Walgreens and buy pizza rolls. Then you go home and devour them and go to bed. (Laughs) At some point, you kind of get over it. It's like, I'm tired, I want to go to bed at a reasonable hour.
When you're out, what is your drink of choice?
I love an Old Fashioned. Maybe it's because I'm from Kentucky and I love rye whiskey bourbon, it's so good, there's something nostalgic about it for me.
Are you a health nut, or can you take down a plate of wings at the bar?
I'm somewhere in between. Right now I'm super healthy because I'm pregnant, before that though you could not keep me away from french fries or chocolate. Those are things that I'll always have, but I'll also definitely have weird kale smoothies, things that are genetically modified.
Do you have any all-time favorite comedy movies or TV shows?
I love BOTTLE ROCKET, I love that movie so much, and that type of humor. When I was growing up, I loved CLUELESS. As far as TV shows, I've always really liked "Friends."
Here's the last question, and you don't have to tell your husband: who is your big celebrity crush at the moment, or all-time?
(Laughs) I've always had a major crush on Paul Newman. But that doesn't help you at all because that's someone who isn't gossipy.
Well honestly, you're the second "Hottie Stop" interview subject to say Paul Newman.
Seriously?! That's awesome. You watch those old movies and you're like, "that guy is super hot."
They don't make them like they used to.
They don't make them like they used to. These guys these days? Nope!
That's a great way to end it! Thanks so much for your time!
Thanks so much!