This just in from our spies over at Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood: Amy Poehler's new NBC comedy, Parks and Recreation, has officially started filming today!
Why is this such good news?
Because the script rocks (yes, we've read it), and P&R (not to be confused with Y&R) looks to be the next NBC comedy that's made of 100 percent awesome, thanks to Poehler and the creative efforts of Office mastermind Greg Daniels and Mike Schur (Mose!).
We caught up with Amy herself to, well, mostly drool and gush over how much we love her new show. And she gave us this inside scoop on what Parks & Rec is about, plus we have sneak peeks for you…
How is it juggling the new job and the new baby?
Honestly, I feel very blessed and lucky to just be figuring it out!
So now that you know your character, Leslie, a little better, what can you tell us?
She wants it all right away, and doesn't quite understand the maneuvering that you have to do to get things done. So I always mistakenly assume everyone is on the same page, like "Let's all make it better!" And it doesn't work like that. I think she slams into the reality of how things are done behind the scenes, how things become very bureaucratic and complicated. Things very simple to her—like we should all have clean drinking water and a park for people to play in! Instead you realize how difficult even those little things are.
Did you get to have input into creating the character?
Yeah, Michael, Greg and I have been talking a lot about her, and yes, I did. Certainly it was their idea to kind of set this place where it is, then we talked a lot about what kind of person we wanted to see and what she kind of hoped and wished for herself and stuff, so it's been an amazingly happy time.
How's Leslie's love life?
There's a character in the pilot, a guy that Leslie has had a brief affair with, named Mark. And she thinks he's not speaking about it out of politeness, but he just doesn't remember.
Ouch. There are some pretty physically demanding scenes in that first script.
Yeah, I get to fall down into a pit. It's hard-hat comedy!
How's it having Rashida Jones (Ann) as your friend on the show?
I'm excited about the idea of us, because you don't see it as much in television, the idea of this female friendship. I think Leslie gets really excited that she's got this new friend, and Rashida plays a very attractive nurse. Leslie is just really excited to be around her, much like when I'm around Rashida. There's some comedy in how much Leslie wants to be friends with her. It's a little too fast.
It's a little bit of a girl crush?
It is a little bit of a girl crush, and she goes a little too fast. In the pilot, we meet on the second day; we're not best friends but I think we're really close, but Leslie's just moving way too fast.
What excites you most about this show?
It's a great opportunity to work with a great cast and great producers and writers. I'm excited about settling in and doing a really specific character, respectfully written, and I think it's really funny and really small and low-stakes. And I enjoy small, specific, low-stakes humor.
—Reporting by Natalie Abrams