Is there anything hotter than a gal who is beautiful and funny? If you ask me, no, there is not - and there may be no funnier lady on television right now than Gillian Jacobs, who stars as the lovable Britta on NBC's "Community." Now gearing up for its fifth season, the sitcom has gathered one of the most fervent followings on any media.
Gillian finds time to do other things too. When we spoke, she was in New Orleans filming the drama BLACK & WHITE with Kevin Costner and Anthony Mackie. She's also in a demented new short film called "It's Not You, It's Me," which sees Gillian play a woman whose resentment of her clueless boyfriend reaches a breaking point in violent (and funny) fashion. Gillian and I spoke about digging graves in her new short, her rise to fame and what she's into doing while in New Orleans. It doesn't involve beads, so don't get your hopes up.
Tell me about how you got involved with the short.
I was sent the script and I liked it and then I had a meeting with Matt Spicer the director and he seemed great and he assembled an awesome cast, so I signed on. It was pretty simple!
It's cool that you get a chance to do fun stuff like this in between all of the other projects you're juggling.
Yeah, we actually shot this on two separate weekends when I was in the middle of production on "Community," so it was kind of a crazy time, but totally worth it. They were able to work around my schedule.
What was the most fun scene to shoot?
There was something cathartic about digging the graves in the desert. Hitting the ground with the shovel, being out there covered in blood. That was kind of fun and weird and different.
That's something you don't get to do on "Community."
Well, I've been covered in blood on community. But no graves.
The last couple of years have obviously catapulted you to another level of stardom thanks to "Community." How have you handled reaching that point where you're recognized and all that comes with that?
I think I'm very happy with my level of recognition because every so often someone will come up to me and say they like the show, but I'm not mobbed anywhere I go. But I really appreciate people telling me they love "Community," and I just usually go about my day.
You've been to a few Comic-Cons, what are your impressions of that whole circus?
Comic-Con was sort of the first place where we realized there was a real audience for "Community," we went after the first season and right before we started shooting the second season, and we were so overwhelmed by the response to the show. Every year we've moved to a bigger hall, and we were at Hall H this year which really felt like an accomplishment. It's something we all look forward to each year, and it's kind of nice that we go right before we start shooting the new season, because we go into the season having been energized by Comic-Con and all the fans. It's a really wonderful tradition for us.
A Twitter follower of mine wants to know how come your dog is so funny. I guess he's a big presence on your Twitter feed?
My dog is on my Vine videos, and I've created a monster. It's really going to his head. When you're trying to think of a Vine video and it's just you and your dog, you wind up putting the dog in the video; he's very patient with me. I usually put a costume on him. (Laughs) I just think he's cute, so I'm glad other people think he's cute, too.
What is your current favorite TV show?
I've been watching a lot of Netflix, so I just re-watched all of "Freaks and Geeks," which was really great. In terms of current shows, I think "Veep" is probably one of my favorites. (Pause) Gosh, as soon as you asked me that question, everything else fell right out of my head. (Laughs)
Who is your celebrity crush?
(Long Pause) Hmm... How about Idris Elba? That's a pretty solid one.
If you weren't an actress what do you think you'd be doing right now?
I think I had aspirations of being an editor in the publishing world. I don't know if I'd actually get hired to do it, but that would probably be my goal.
Who is the funniest person you've ever worked with?
There's something about the cumulative energy of the cast of "Community." I think around 2 a.m. when we're still shooting and everyone has finally hit that silly point and we all get really goofy, it's probably the most I ever laugh. I think the "Avengers" team of the cast of "Community" are the funniest people I've ever met.
What do you do when you're not working?
I've been shooting here in New Orleans for most of the summer, so I've been to every museum they have here. An art museum, a wax museum, a voodoo museum. Every one of them.
Have you hit Bourbon Street?
No! I avoid it, I go everywhere but Bourbon Street. The city is so awesome, and there's so much more to it than that, so I try to see everything else.
What are your favorite cheat foods or drinks?
I'm in the city for that. I had a pork belly breakfast sandwich the other day that was sensational, and will probably give me a heart attack at some point down the road. I had some amazing fried chicken recently. I've been eating a lot. (Laughs) I try to keep a balance going, but there are so many amazing restaurants here that I'll kick myself if I don't go to some of them.
How about drinks, are there any exotic New Orleans drinks that you've tried?
I don't really drink, so that's why it's been easy for me to stay away from Bourbon Street. Because of the heat down here, you have to drink water, otherwise you're going to pass out. Staying hydrated is pretty important when you're in New Orleans during August.
Stay hydrated! Thanks so much for the talk, Gillian!
You can follow Gillian on Twitter right HERE. Check out "It's Not You, It's Me" below! "Community" returns to NBC for the 2013-2014 season.