Connect with Emily on Facebook, Twitter, IMDB, and Actors Access!
What's your favorite cupcake flavor?
I have to choose?! I guess it would be my friend's homemade red velvet cheesecake cupcakes. Heaven as experienced through my tongue.
What or whom inspired you to pursue a career in comedy?
Necessity. I had an intense and awkward childhood and nothing inspires comedy more than tension, awkward situations and extremely high expectations that aren't always met. I'm a tension bomb diffusing specialist. Or, the female version of Chandler Bing. Minus the sweater vests.
If Chuck Norris were to corner you in an alley and challenge you to a duel, what would be your weapon of choice?
If having an older brother taught me anything, it's that:
1) I'm scrappy
2) I'm not afraid to fight dirty
3) My elbows are unusually sharp and can inflict some serious damage.
Let's be honest, though, Chuck Norris would take one look at 5'2" me and laugh at the absurdity of dueling with me. I, however, might challenge HIM to a duel by hurling at his face the ham that's been in my freezer 18 months, just to get rid of the damn thing. Cause let's be honest, freezer burn isn't pretty on a ham, in your stomach or on your face.
What are some challenges you've faced since going down the comedy track and what, in your experience, has made those obstacles worth overcoming?
I am, absolutely, my own biggest challenge. I'm not sure if that means I'm challenged in the way that mothers whisper about other people's children on the playground or if I'm just unusually adept at self-defeating personal habits. Regardless, wherever I go, there I am.
However, being able to brighten someone's day with a laugh or turning something that felt really dark into something funny is the best feeling in the world. It's like crack. Before you have the heart attack.
What's the funniest thing you've ever heard/seen?
Superlatives make me itchy. However, some funny things I've heard/seen recently are:
1) My cat snoring
2) An old person falling over
3) Auto Correct on my iphone. Steve Jobs, you are a comedic genius. Who knew?
Which comedienne, dead or alive, would you love to work with/meet?
Funny women are THE BEST. Tina Fey, Kristin Wiig, Jane Lynch, Mindy Kaling, Carrie Fisher – the list is endless. I've been blessed to have worked with a ton of funny women already and I have to say it's AWESOME.
In what ways do you think you've improved or evolved since your first comedy venture?
Considering that my first comedy ventures were pranking my mother and putting on comedy shows with my brother (we were 6 – it wasn't very funny), the bar really couldn't be any lower.
I do a lot of improv comedy and that continues to erase any sort of filter that I might have regarding what I say or do. I constantly surprise myself and very often embarrass myself as a result. Apparently, when I don't think about what I'm going to say or do, I am much dirtier, darker and weirder than I could ever have thought. Score one for the left brain! Although, sometimes this bleeds into my "regular" life and, well, it can create some pretty awkward situations. And lots of first dates. Second dates? Not so much.
My comedy also really expanded after I challenged myself to give up self-deprecating humor for a month. I had begun to use it as a crutch and I found that when I gave it up, I was able to see humor in many more things. And, I felt less like killing myself most days. Now THAT's a win-win!
I also think accepting that I am funny has been super important and given me the permission to do things that otherwise feel outside my comfort zone.
Nonetheless, I still prank my mother constantly. It's just so fun to trick a naïve, kind hearted, older woman – makes me laugh just thinking about it.
What long-term/short-term goals do you have for your career?
I'd like to make Anderson Cooper giggle like a schoolgirl. In the long term? WORLD DOMINATION, one giggler at a time.
Do you have a specific audience to whom you play/would like to play? Describe that audience, and why/how you're playing to them.
People. Who aren't dead. And sometimes, people who are. I don't discriminate.
When you're not writing/performing comedy, you're...
Dancing. Hiking. Trying to do Yoga. Hanging out with friends. Talking to my cat. Cooking. Forgetting that I'm cooking when something or someone distracts me. Yes, I burn a lot of brownies.
What's the difference between appealing to women and appealing to men?
I'd like to say that there's no difference, but I'm not sure that's always true. Men and women experience certain things in the world differently and sometimes have challenges that are unique to their gender. Since people often find things they can relate to funny, certain topics are going to be more germane and hence funnier to one gender, in general. I don't think men appreciate it as much as women when I refer to my womb as a pocketbook or my breasts as the soda fountain at the 7-11. But the bottom line is, people are people and the human condition is so miserable, absurd, beautiful and challenging that we all can relate on some level to being human and find the associated challenges funny.
That being said, I once had a date say "Funny women aren't pretty. You're really funny." Now THAT'S comedy.
What's your favorite comedy movie or T.V. show of all time?
I have too many favorites! So here's a sampling:
From the "Oldie But Goodie" category: Fletch. Yes, I still quote this movie all the time.
From the "Groundbreaking, Classic & Hysterical" category: This Is Spinal Tap. 'Cause my life goes to 11.
From the "Desperately Needed A Good Laugh Tonight" category: Horrible Bosses. I laughed out loud in a dark theater. 'Nuff said.
From the "Speaks To My Dorkiness" category: New Girl. Yes, I needed Schmidt to remind me that my legs need to be shaved in the front AND back. I'm a sad excuse for a woman.
From the "I Totally Relate To This Character" category: 30 Rock. Oh, Liz Lemon. Thank you for existing so that I don't feel so alone in this world.
And, from the "I Laughed, I Cried, I Conquered" category: Finding Nemo. 'Cause at heart, I'm really just a big softie.
The title of your autobiography?
This Isn't What I Ordered.
And an excerpt from that biography:
Born in New York City, Emily is an award winning actress, improviser, voiceover artist, writer and producer. She has performed in over fifty plays and films, recurred on NBC's Days of Our Lives and had the privilege of working with many gifted artists including the great Paul Sills, Mike Nichols and George Morrison. Emily is a founding member of the improv group In Rare Form (InRareFormComedy.com), with whom she performs in Los Angeles. You can see her online in the webseries So Natural, Short Term and 8.13 as well as the Comediva original short Pinsanity. In addition, she can be seen in the upcoming feature films Pretty Dead and Monday Morning. Emily is the daughter of two professional athletes, which does not at all explain why she became an actress. As a child, Emily always wondered why Goldilocks didn't buy the cottage and put the 3 bears on payroll...