Jane Krakowski is simply unbreakable
Jane Krakowski may not be the star of the Unreakable Kimmy Schmidt but she might just as well be, Denette Wilford says.
DENETTE WILFORD/ 24 HOURS
Jane Krakowski is headed to Montreal for Just For Laughs - and promises to be a laugh riot.
Ellie Kemper may play the titular character on the Netflix smash but it's Krakowski who gets the best, most outrageous lines. And considering how brilliant the writing is, that says a lot - not only about Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, but of Krakowski's portrayal of Jacqueline White.
The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt star makes her Just For Laughs festival debut on Friday at Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier in Montreal. Considering her expansive Tony-winning career on Broadway, and slaying it in roles on 30 Rock and Ally McBeal that only an actress of her calibre can handle, I had to ask her what took her so long to get up here and what can fans expect.
"I'm getting really excited as we're putting the final touches on what my gala will contain," Krakowski told me over the phone. "There'll be some specialty material, there'll be some musical moments. I think my friend Tituss Burgess will be coming to sing with me a little bit. We're trying to put together a really great night and we're also really excited about the hilarious comedians that are going to be there so I'm thrilled."
Jane and Tituss? Yes, please. But also, more of Jacqueline and Titus.
If you recall, Jacqueline ended the season happily single with the realization that she was going to be a talent agent, so the possibilities of the two sharing more screen time are huge.
"I hope that Titus Andromedon becomes one of my clients," Krakowski laughed. "I would assume, after all I helped him with in the last episode of Season 3, he would naturally sign on no matter what sort of agent I become."
Krakowski added that she wouldn't be opposed to doing a little more singing and dancing on the show because, hey, there's no conflict of interest if an agent represents herself, right? "In the beginning, because we had all just worked together on 30 Rock, Tina and Robert wanted to make very clear lines between Jenna and Jacqueline. Now that we're four seasons in, that could be a possibility."
As for where the Emmynominated series goes in Season 4, Krakowski hopes it continues to balance all the funny with the occasional dark moments.
"I tend to be moved by the moments that surprise you with how honest and real they can be, and I think that works so well a lot of the time because the show is so over the top," said Krakowski. "I think that when it goes that far, you just stop. Like when Kimmy's mom said, 'I love roller coasters because it's the only place I can scream and no one can hear me,'you're like, 'Whoa, this is about much more.'Those moments of what was the setup for the show that are so much darker, so much deeper, can come out and stop you. But it's not its main MO."
The characters, all of whom started out wacky and more than a little ridiculous, have undergone transformations and have been rounded out to make them a little more believable, but it's Jacqueline who may have transformed the most, going from a shallow, clueless trophy wife to an independent career woman. Whatever the future holds for her, Krakowski just doesn't want her to lose her Jacqueline-ness.
"It was a very transitional year for her," says Krakowski. "In Season 3, Jacqueline was more about where she was going versus where she was at the time, which was a good move and I'm very excited we got Season 4 to see where it goes. I know they wanted to have her be able to stand on her own two feet, but since Jacqueline has Barbie arches, that's not very easy for her."
Krakowski is quick to remind that Jacqueline has other skills to keep her in the workforce. "Let's not forget, she's also a guidance counsellor bather so if the agency goes belly up she'll have something to fall back on."
Either way, it's a win-win - for Jacqueline and us.