Gina Gershon has a hard time with probing interviewers (ahem!) before breakfast or her daily latte. ”My brain is too slow,” complains the actress, 45. She must have had some wicked reinforcements, then, while co-writing her first, just-out book for young adults, Camp Creepy Time, a werewolves-mummies-and-vampires tale that’s already been optioned for a film. Gershon — a part-time rocker who’s occasionally known as Ugly Betty’s Fabia — can be seen as Denis Leary’s steady on the new season of FX’s Rescue Me. That character’s name? ”I can’t remember. I must be hungry.”
Let’s talk about Rescue Me and your role. What’s your character/role going to be like?
I’m going to be Denis Leary’s girlfriend. We’re still developing her, we’re making her up as we go.
What’s her name?
I can’t remember [laughs]. Uh, isn’t that pathetic? I must be hungry. The funny thing is, he asks my name [but] I actually haven’t said my name out loud and neither has he. So in the first two episodes you don’t know what my name is. At this point, her name could be anything. So we could change her name. In fact, I remember thinking, I don’t even like her name, we should change her name. The name at this moment is irrelevant. We kind of meet and do our thing and he has no idea what my name is. I’m nameless.
You’ve known Denis for sometime now, right. How did you two connect for Rescue Me?
We’ve known each other for a long time but we really connected through our friend Ted Demme who died a few years ago. I was actually surprised it took him so long to write something for me. Because I did his [Comedy Central] Roast, and his other show. He’s a really close friend of mine.
Any idea if Fabia is going to be back for Ugly Betty next season?
Who knows? People keep asking me that question. I think people want me to come back. I guess if they’ll pay me enough, I’ll come back. I’m just kidding. Don’t write that down. Actually…it’s a very Fabia answer.
And what about Camp Creepy Time? DreamWorks bought the rights and you’re going to produce?
I’m a producer on it…isn’t that crazy? And hopefully I’ll be acting in it as well. I’m just excited. I want the screenplay to be finished. I’m really, really excited. I can’t believe I’ll be working on a movie with DreamWorks and Nickelodeon. It’s just surreal when I’m talking to Steven Spielberg about the project. I just kind of start laughing, thinking, ”God, this is so amazing.” It feels like a dream. And Richard LaGravenese, he’s been working on the script and it’s all so good.
And what’s going on with your music? Are you coming out with an album?
Yeah, I’m coming out with an album on iTunes. It should be in July. And I changed the name. I’ve done all of this press, saying I’m going to call it ”In Search of Cleo.” I’m going to call it ”Midnight Girl.”
Oh cool. That’s the name of one of the tracks too right?
It is. Look at you with your research.
Got to do the research. I also listened to ”Pretty Girls on Prozac.”
Did you like it?
Yeah, it’s good. And hilarious.
When I first started singing that to my friends…they just start laughing, because there’s a truthfulness to it. That song was based on this actress who literally was upset about her boyfriend. This girl who has absolutely everything — she was gorgeous, but she was all kind of screwed up, and she was taking these anti-depressants and…blah, blah, blah.
So going back to your Pretty in Pink days, you played a bully. Now, you’re coming out with this children’s book. How do you reconcile the two?
Um, there are a lot of bullies in Camp Creepy Time [laughs]. The main character Einstein is a bit of an anti-hero. It’s not like your typical nice guy. Not everyone’s a nice guy in that book.
So which John Hughes movie would you say is your favorite and is there a character you identify with the most?
I’d have to say Pretty in Pink, and my character. Since I played it, I can identify with it.
Okay, this is silly. How many times a day do you look at yourself in the mirror and what do you say to yourself?
I look as little as possible.
Do you ever do that all-angle, two mirrors approach?
I really try to avoid that. It just gets a little sad and depressing. I don’t think it’s natural to have mirrors. I think the world would be a better place if there weren’t any mirrors at all. I think people would be happier. I really do. I’m not even being funny about that.
NEXT PAGE: Gershon on Tom Cruise, Lenny Kravitz, and her ”porn name”