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Hiatus Helper Exclusive: New Girl’s Lamorne Morris Q&A [Interview] 

Photo Credit: Dewey Nicks/FOX

Just because it’s summer hiatus doesn’t mean we can’t talk New Girl. Netflix recently struck an exclusive deal to stream New Girl repeats (season one is available immediately and we highly recommend you get with the program if you haven’t already). FOX announced that season three of the hit comedy would start airing on Tuesday Sept. 17 at 9/8c. And we got the chance to catch up with Lamorne Morris aka Winston at the recent ATX Television Festival in Austin, Texas.

At a restaurant located on the city’s famed Sixth Street, Morris talked about one of his previous Austin experiences, about Taylor Swift’s season finale guest star appearance, working with both Max Greenfield and Brenda Song and he told us about who he thinks is the perfect girl for Winston.

TV GOODNESS: Have you ever been to Austin before?

LAMORNE MORRIS: I came here in March. It was raining. But I don’t mind the rain at all because it was still warm. I was walking in the rain for a while. Somebody broke my phone. Literally a guy ran by when I was pulling my phone out and he goes – this guy runs by screaming and he goes — ‘I LOVE IT’ — and just bumped me on accident and knocked my phone out of my hand and he just kept running, cracked my screen…

TV GOODNESS: You didn’t run after him?

LAMORNE: No. It was funny. When someone screams — ‘I LOVE IT’ — you have to laugh at that and go ‘Alright, have fun, buddy.’

TV GOODNESS: Winston’s finest moment from season two.

LAMORNE: I’d probably say when they went along with his prank in the finale. The finale was a good episode for myself as well as Winston. You know the guys went along with what he was doing. And somehow I got Jess to get up in that vent too. It was really great. It was a funny episode for the cast all around. It was a great episode — we had Taylor Swift on there…

TV GOODNESS: Did you get to interact with her [Taylor Swift] at all?

LAMORNE: No, I didn’t get to meet her. I wasn’t shooting that day. I was “up in the vents.” I hear she was good. On set what we do is per every joke we have four or five alternative jokes. A lot of times they’re a mouthful, tongue twisters so you can’t quite get ’em out like with one take…apparently she nailed them all in one take. And when I asked Jake — Jake Johnson who plays Nick on the show — I said ‘how was she?’ He was like, ‘Dude, she nailed every single joke, one take, one take, one take, one take. And it was over.

TV GOODNESS: How did they decide which joke to go with?

LAMORNE: You know, that’s up to the writers in the editing room. A lot of times on set you’ll have a great joke and everyone will laugh at it but then once you get back in the editing room you have to see whatever works in the flow of the show. Sometimes you have to take the joke out completely in order for the whole episode to work. And I think all the directors/writers/producers all do a great job finding those moments.

TV GOODNESS: Was there something you ad-libbed this season that made it on air?

Photo Credit: Justin Stephens/FOX

LAMORNE: We ad-lib a lot. It’s really hard to say what you ad-lib and what they’ve written because you would ad-lib something and they would spin off of that as well. So you can say 1 + 1 is 2 and then they go ‘also while you’re at it, add this to it, too.’

TV GOODNESS: Does this happen at the table read?

LAMORNE: No, it happens on set while we’re shooting. They’ll just toss out jokes and say ‘Lamorne say this.’  And I’ll say that and I’ll say something that I came up with off the top of my head and they’ll just add to it. They’ll go: ‘Ooh that’s funny, go on that.’ Do this. Do that. The scene can sometimes take a completely left turn.

TV GOODNESS: That sounds like fun.

LAMORNE: It’s fun. I have a really good time working on the show. The only part I don’t like — I think I saw Jake Johnson say this in an interview too — is waking up when it’s still dark outside, driving to work and it’s still nighttime.

TV GOODNESS: So you’re not a morning person?

LAMORNE: No…not at all. As much as I try to be I’m not. It’s not for me.

TV GOODNESS: There were two aspects that were really enjoyable with your character. One was the strengthening of the Winston and Schmidt friendship. Can you talk about that?

LAMORNE: I think it’s great. I think we [Lamorne and Max Greenfield] play well off each other in real life. I like playing the straight man sometimes. And, of course, his character is so off the wall. And I think when you have a character like his, that’s so dynamic, you have to have something to even it out and I enjoy playing the straight character a lot…the straight acting and setting up with jokes. And I think that’s why it works well. We work well together. And on the opposite end, Max is a great actor. So he doesn’t have to play screwball characters all the time. And I can play a screwball character sometimes. So we work well together. And especially with the Nick and Jess thing, you got to have more chemistry within the loft, too. So you’ve got to play with that dynamic. I’m anxious to see season three, there might  be some Cece/Winston interaction a lot. So you never know.

TV GOODNESS: And then there’s Winston and Daisy…can you talk about working with Brenda Song? So many people seemed to take a liking to that relationship. And can you talk about whether she’ll be back (even though she’s part of another project)?

Photo Credit: Patrick McElhenney/FOX

LAMORNE: It was great working with her. I mean, we’re still friends. In a perfect world, she would be a series regular on her show, Dads, and a recurring on our show. More money for her. Come on, Brenda. But I don’t think that’s going to happen. The chemistry was great. We remain friends off camera but, you’re right…I got so many tweets just about that. Probably more tweets than anything I’ve ever done on the show, was when Brenda was on the show. And, yeah, I wish her well.

TV GOODNESS: What or who do you think would be the perfect girl for Winston? 

LAMORNE: Oprah would be the perfect girl for Winston. She could teach him a lot of things. She’s very beautiful. She’s older than him. She’s got more money. Oprah…or Rihanna, one of the two. Rihanna works. Actually, I have two ideas. Zoe Kravitz, only because I want to date her in real life. And Rihanna, only because I want to date her in real life.

New Girl returns with new episodes this fall on Fox.

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