MOM: Allison Janney on the Challenges of Playing Bonnie, Plus Which Actors She Wants as Love Interests - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

MOM: Allison Janney on the Challenges of Playing Bonnie, Plus Which Actors She Wants as Love Interests

January 27, 2014 by  


Allison Janney is no stranger to television (she has nearly 200 episodes of primetime TV under her belt!), but when I caught up with her at a recent WBTV TCA comedy event, she couldn’t stop gushing about playing Bonnie on her new CBS series, MOM.

“I’m loving it,” she raved. “I’m loving the half-hour [multicam sitcom format]. It’s like a carnival, the whole fast-paced atmosphere, it’s very different from an hour-long drama show. I have to tell you, it’s so much fun. I love this job, I love these people.”

“I’m excited to learn who Bonnie is every episode I get,” Janney continued. “I love it, and sometimes it’s a little awkward for me, because I’m so different from her, so it’s like, ‘Really? I’m going to say that? That’s so mean! I don’t want to say that.’ But then I say it, and I hear the laughter, and then I go, ‘Okay, I guess that’s just Bonnie!’ Sometimes it’s a little uncomfortable playing her, and it’s been a little challenging getting used to playing a character this inappropriate and obnoxious. And I’ve been grateful for the moments where you see her vulnerability and you see where she comes from, so you understand why she is the way she is, a little bit. ”

As Janney feels her way around this new character, she told me some of her more long-term fans are also having some transitional issues getting used to Bonnie, too.

“I don’t go and search social media for what people are thinking; I’m a little too thin-skinned for that,” she admitted. “I’ve heard some lovely things. [But] I’ve heard from some rabid C.J. fans [from Janney’s time on THE WEST WING] who are like, ‘I don’t know if I want to see you like that.’ It must be hard when you’re in someone’s living room for seven years — they don’t want to see you as somebody else; they fell in love with you as C.J. But I’m hoping they embrace Bonnie. Or maybe I’ll find a new fan base…It’s interesting, in theater, people change roles all the time. But there’s something about the regularity of the [television] audience — maybe that it’s that you’re in someone’s home — that it’s jarring to see people as a different character.”

And while MOM has already nabbed a great number of guest stars, including Kevin Pollak, who reprises his role as Christy’s father in tonight’s moving episode — Janney told me she hoped Pollak would make his way back to the show again before the season concluded —  Janney has a few other celebrities she’s hoping find their way to her show.

“There’s always the opportunity for Bonnie to find love,” she laughed. “She’s trying. Maybe in the form of George Clooney. Or Michael Fassbender. It would be fun to bring a myriad of men for her to play with. I don’t think Bonnie discriminates. That would be enormously fun.”

I mean…who can argue with that?!

MOM airs Mondays at 9:30 PM on CBS.

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Filed under #1 featured, Mom


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