Actress Olivia Wilde has a few things in common with her faux-surname inspiration, Oscar Wilde, as we learned from today’s Reddit AMA with Wilde and her Drinking Buddies director, Joe Swanberg. She’s rather funny. She was raised by writers. And she’s far from shy about discussing politics.
Drinking Buddies, a comedy about co-workers at a Chicago brewery, is currently out in theaters, iTunes, and On Demand. The tone of the AMA stayed on an even keel with the film, mostly focusing on light-hearted, lusty, first-date-y conversation topics like favorite things and dream superhero roles. Wilde, who starred as Dr. Remy ”Thirteen” Hadley on House from 2007 to 2012, was virtually pelted with questions ranging from her time on popular the medical drama, but also answered questions on the awesomeness of Drinking Buddies co-star Anna Kendrick, her favorite beer, and what it takes to parallel park (hint: a paired anatomy). Sadly, I don’t think we’ll ever get to know what her fiance, SNL’s Jason Sudeikis, smells like.
First, some notables from Drinking Buddies director Joe Swanberg:
I know the film was improvised almost completely, with just an outline beforehand. What’s that process like?
“A lot of my notes are reminding the actors that they don’t have to always talk. Silence can be very exciting on screen, especially if the camera can see an actors eyes. I never rehearse. We block it out for lighting, but I want to save the dialogue for when the camera is rolling. I sometimes use the first take and I don’t want to miss something great during rehearsal.”
What was it like working with Anna Kendrick on Drinking Buddies?
“She’s amazing. Most of my favorite moments of hers are reactions and silent freak outs she has with her eyes. I wasn’t even aware on set how great she was. I discovered a lot of what she was doing in the editing room. I hope to keep working with her. We made another film together called HAPPY CHRISTMAS that I’m editing now.”
Why did you choose to write Drinking Buddies with Kate as the main character? What do you think the female point-of-view adds to the movie/story?
“I have a friend named Kate who works at Half Acre Brewery in Chicago and I was fascinated by her job as a woman in a very male dominated industry. She was on set as a consultant for Olivia and I wanted to tell the story of the pressure she faces to be “one of the guys” but also the constant attention she gets from those same guys. It’s a complex thing to navigate and Olivia did an amazing job portraying it. There aren’t nearly enough stories about women being told. I’m doing my best!”
And now Olivia Wilde’s best AMA moments:
What has been your favorite line you’ve ever said in anything, ever?
“I’m sweatin my balls off in here” - Drinking Buddies
If you could go back in time and witness ANY historical event, what would you pick?
“The burning of Joan of Arc. I’d grab her and run and tell her that in the future Miley Cyrus is our saint and Joan must learn the art of twerking.”
How does it feel to be a woman who has portrayed an LGBT character and helped others come to terms with their sexuality?
“Nothing gives me more pride than hearing gay and bisexual men and women tell me they were helped in some way by my roles on television. That’s a true honor. It is the responsibility of media to accurately reflect society.”
I’m a huge fan of House and I was wondering what it’s like to work with Hugh Laurie?
“Hello! Hugh is the most wonderful, awesome, hilarious bad ass I’ve worked with. Such intense talent. I miss him!”
WHY HAVEN’T YOU SEEN BREAKING BAD?? [Yes, this question was asked in all-caps]
“Because I’ve failed as a human.”
Would you be willing to have a battle to the death with Emma Watson for the title of most obsessed over girl on Reddit?
“I would never kill Emma but maybe we should join forces and take over the universe.”
What are your thoughts on doing a sequel to Tron Legacy?
“I loved making Tron and would do it again though I’d probably have to play the mom now and the suit would have to be made of sweatpants.”
If you weren’t an actress, what profession do you think you’d be doing?
“If not an actress I’d definitely work at Revolution Brewery in Chicago.”
Do you have any advice for the next generation of young women and what we can do to empower ourselves and women all over the world?
“Hello! I love the book Half the Sky when it comes to discussing women’s roles in alleviating poverty. If that was required reading for both sexes we would be in better shape. My advice is get involved with small, locally run orgs and embrace micro finance and education projects. X”