Zooey Deschanel: Melody Maker
I was lucky enough to catch this full page article in the Movies section of National Post (Canada.) It’s an article that praises Zooey Deschanel and discusses some personal details of her life. (Sorry guys, she’s engaged–though they haven’t set a date…)
Zooey Deschanel: Melody Maker
Bob Thompson, Canwest News Service
Even when Zooey Deschanel made her film debut, in Lawrence Kasdan’s 1999 comedy Mumford, she managed a musical moment that same year by appearing in The Offspring’s video for She’s Got Issues.
Professionally, the 29-year-old actress continues to balance her obsessions with music and movies. Personally, she’s leaning toward the pop world, having announced her engagement to Death Cab For Cutie lead singer Ben Gibbard.
Certainly, fans know all about her double life. In Jim Carrey’s Yes Man last Christmas, her character fronted a quirky pop group as one of her many odd jobs.
In (500) Days Of Summer, her latest film, she gets help from her real group, She & Him, on a cover version of a 1980s pop tune, but the closest she comes to performing is on a karaoke stage.
In the comedy, opening July 17, Deschanel plays the cynical loner Summer, the object of affection for the hopelessly romantic Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who recounts the good and bad times with his lady via a time-shifting cinema diary brought to us by former music video director Marc Webb.
Music is like a third character in the movie.
Deschanel is the centre of attention as the object of desire, but she made sure the more obvious clichés were edited out of her acting performance.
“I tried not to make her cynical,” says Deschanel of her heartbreaker. “I tried to make her practical. She was not waiting for the right person, but the right situation. I think she represents what the movie says – having a philosophy is not necessarily what determines your happiness.”
Deschanel and Gordon-Levitt’s connection on camera was immediate, which wasn’t a fluke. They have shared a decade-long friendship after meeting on the film Manic. They stayed in touch, even jammed together at clubs in Los Angeles when their busy schedules would allow it.
An irony of Deschanel’s career is that she never got to perform in Almost Famous, Cameron Crowe’s 2000 film tribute to rock ‘n’ roll – she played the non-singing stewardess sister. That role, however, was her break out and allowed her some free time to also dabble in music with a jazz act called If All The Stars Were Pretty Babies with actress Samantha Shelton.
A string of best-friend supporting parts followed in such movies as Big Trouble, Abandon and The Good Girl with Jennifer Aniston.
It wasn’t until Deschanel shared the screen with Will Ferrell in 2003’s Elf that moviegoers were reminded of her charm and singing ability, as she duetted with Ferrell in the bathroom shower scene on Baby, It’s Cold Outside.
The next year she was featured in Eulogy and then played Trillian in the 2005 movie version of Douglas Adams’ satire The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy. In 2006, besides her roomie-friend part in Failure To Launch, she won raves for her four-episode arc in the cable series Weeds.
Somehow, she also found the time to release a She & Him album with musical partner M. Ward called Volume One in 2008. And big surprise, she’s working on the Volume Two follow-up this summer.
“That’s all I have right now, and I love it,” she says.
Well, there is the little matter of a wedding date. But the couple hasn’t picked one yet. And although her latest film emphasizes love and marriage, she’d rather not compare herself to her Summer character.
“I don’t like to say how I think I fit into it personally,” she says. “Generally, I think I’m actually a pretty romantic person, but maybe not compulsive like Tom in the film. I mean, they’re both delusional in many ways.”
She will confess to this: “I like romance. I mean, my parents have been married for 35 years, and my grandparents have been married for 65 years, so I come from a long line of good marriages.
“But I wasn’t one of those people who pictured getting married from the time that I was a kid,” Deschanel adds. “I pictured being an actor and a singer, and I had big dreams of being in musicals.”