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Welcome to Kat Dennings Diaries, a fansite dedicated to the actress Kat Dennings. She became known to the general public as the sassy waitress Max Black in the comedy 2 Broke Girls and in the shoes of the witty Darcy Lewis of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Kat can now be seen in Hulu's new show Dollface. We aim to be your go-to source for Kat goodness and offer a comprehensive archive of her career and fierceness.
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    Exclusive Interview: 'Nick and Norah' Star Kat Dennings

    2008, February 09   |   Written by Jenni Miller

    The star of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist chats with Premiere about the hazards of filming in NYC at 4 in the morning, mismatched pajamas, and that treacherous Vanity Fair photo shoot.

    Kat Dennings made her first screen appearance in 2000 in an episode of Sex and the City appropriately titled “Hot Child in the City.” Eight years later, the 22-year-old is ready to make her own New York City-sized splash with this fall’s romantic comedy Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, starring Michael Cera as the Nick to her Norah. And in her interview with Vanity Fair for this summer’s Young Hollywood issue, Dennings name checks Cronenberg, Viggo Mortensen, and AC/DC in the space of one paragraph. With several projects in the hopper, a blog and YouTube channel chock full of silliness, and a whip smart, charmingly self-deprecating way about her, this bright young thing is one to watch.

    The House Bunny just came out and that looks like that was a lot of fun to film, especially with Anna Faris and the costumes. How was that?

    It was amazing… our costume designer Mona May did Clueless, which is one of my favorite movies of all time. I was just asking her questions about Clueless every ten seconds. She was really sweet and answered my questions.

    Was the after-party really at Hef’s house?

    It was at the Playboy Mansion, yes it was. I didn’t stay that long [laughs] but I know there were a lot of guys there [who] had fun. Not really my scene, you know?

    Your character Norah in Nick and Norah is really interesting and cool, but she’s also awkward in a really real way, like when Nick and Norah are in the car together and trying to make conversation and Norah’s like, “Oh, forget it.” Do you relate to her at all?

    Yes, I think I relate to her the most of anyone I’ve ever played, and I wanted to make sure she was really fleshed out, you know, really a complete person with her weird little tics and her insecurities. She’s very insecure and vulnerable, and she tries not to be that way because she knows it’s pathetic but she can’t really get out of it. So she sometimes puts her foot in her mouth, especially around Nick.

    Everyone wants to know what it was like working with Michael Cera.

    The best. The best. It’s so laid back with Michael. We would both just hang out and talk, and we would seamlessly start shooting a scene, or we’d be singing between takes or something. He’s just, you know, sweet and smart and funny and nice. He’s just a really, really nice person, and it makes a movie where you’re in every scene together essentially so fun and easy.

    I read on your blog that New Yorkers yelled at you and kind of bugged you guys a little bit while filming. What was that like?

    You know, New York at 4 in the morning is really kind of tempestuous. When we were filming, we were doing all night shoots, which means you get up at like 3 pm and then shoot through the night ’til morning, basically, so New Yorkers on the Lower East Side at 4 in the morning are all, they’re all soft or they’re in a good mood or, you know, [looking] for some mischief and two teenagers in a Yugo is fun for them to make fun of. I don’t blame them [laughs]. Oh wait, I wasn’t a teenager when we made that. I still think of myself as a teenager; it’s sad… People would throw fruit at us, people would call us names, people would scream at us. Yeah, it was a little scary but kind of amazing.

    I don’t want to spoil anything for our readers but at the end there’s a really sweet love scene, and it’s really not one that I’ve seen a lot, especially in movies for teenagers. Tell me about that a little bit.

    We definitely wanted it to be obvious that they have fallen in love and that it’s innocent, you know? And they weren’t all like tearing each other’s clothes off or anything. It’s a little bit awkward and sweet. It’s just real. It is what would happen to these two people because they’ve just sort of had their first time to be alone and talk for real, not when they’re looking for [Norah’s friend] Caroline or, you know, something crazy’s happening… They’re just having a discussion and it’s just very sweet, and it shows just where they’re at and how much they love each other and how much promise there is for them as a couple.

    The cameos were great. Who are your favorite musicians and bands right now?

    Oh boy. Well, I’m always listening to David Bowie. He is my number one. Always. I’m listening to a lot of Nina Simone. And one of my favorites who has music in the movie is Devendra Banhart, who has a cameo… We became really good friends after that so it’s funny to see [his cameo]. Yeah, he’s awesome. His music is fantastic, obviously. It’s really exciting to hear his songs now, it’s like, “Hee hee hee, Devendra!”

    Your style in The House Bunny was really different than Nick and Norah, and what you’re wearing in your YouTube videos. You’ve got your own style, the mismatched pajamas and stuff, and I’m just wondering did your style contribute to Norah’s style, and what do you like to wear?

    Well, as we speak, speaking of mismatched pajamas, I’m wearing pajama pants and a shirt that has moustaches all over it so I don’t know what that tells you but … [laughs] My style and Norah’s style is similar but we had, I mean, when I say expensive fittings, I mean like a whole week full of fittings for Norah because Norah wears one outfit, essentially, the entire film. So it was very important. And in the book, Norah wears a flannel shirt, and I fought for that tooth and nail, but um, you know, we end up with a more neutral outfit that I would definitely wear — in fact, her shirt is this James Perse scoop-necked tee-shirt that I actually went and bought. I bought it in brown when we were done with the movie. I mean, it’s just jeans and boots, and I have the same boots and a tee-shirt and a sweater. I totally would wear that. And my style in House Bunny is bananas. I don’t know who would wear any of it. [laughs]… It’s pretty insane.

    When I see girls on Melrose walking around in their mini-skirts and their extensions and the glittery stuff, I’m like, “Wow!” [laughs] You know, it’s amazing to me. You know what I mean? It’s so amazing to me… I can’t believe it, sort of. It’s so high maintenance and impossible to walk, even… I’m an East Coaster myself, as you know, so it’s just like, black, brown, navy, gray. So you know, all that glitter is terrifying. And Mona [her character in The House Bunny]’s before look, when she’s got the short black hair, I actually enjoyed that thoroughly. But once again, very far from my own style. I don’t know what my style is, just sort of my brother’s shirts and whatever pants are laying around and cowboy boots, basically. [laughs]

    What made you decide to start blogging and doing a video blog?

    I’ve had my blog at Katdennings.com, my written blog, I think seven years now. You wouldn’t know by looking at it, but it’s seven years and if you go back, it’s goes back all the way to January 2001, so it’s a long time. I’ve been blogging that way for so long that when YouTube happened, it sort of seemed like a natural transition, just like another way to blog, and I didn’t want to misrepresent myself to my loyal readers and have them think that I just lay around in full hair and makeup every day, because I seriously don’t. And it’s true. Sometimes I just sit around wearing a funny hat and pajamas. That’s literally how I am. [laughs] And sometimes I put makeup on and experiment with crazy makeup alone in my room just ’cause I feel like it… It’s pretty much exactly who I am and I can certainly be obnoxious.

    How is your blogging changed as you’ve gotten more famous? I mean, have you gotten less personal?

    Um, that word “famous” scares me a little bit.

    Sorry, “well-known”?

    That’s good… I think it’s [hasn’t] changed at all [as far as] the amount of things I write about or reveal about myself. It’s pretty much the same; it’s kind of a tell-all but there’s not much to tell [laughs]… I mean literally, my most exciting event this past week was the lizard appearing in my bathroom. That’s literally the most exciting thing that’s happened to me, and I wrote about it. It’s just that the things I write about have changed. If I read back to the first year or two of my blog, it’s all about boys and nail polish and clothes and it’s like ridiculous teenage girl things, and as I got in my 20s or a little bit before, I started to write about more and more weird things that I was thinking about. Just like everyday happenings more or less, and less about specific people or things like that. I don’t know, it’s weird. I’ve had to really do my homework with my crazy mind.

    You talk a little bit about the movies you’re working on but not really.

    Well, I didn’t want to make the blog seem like a promotional tool at all. I didn’t want people to think that I have this blog just to promote my movies or tell people when a magazine is out. And I do do that because I have gotten emails from people asking for me to tell them when stuff is out, which I understand. I do do that now, because I know my grandpa reads it [laughs]. Yeah, my family reads that, so I do put stuff in there, but in passing.

    When a movie comes out I make sure to try and put a post up on the day or before or a little bit after. I’m so proud of Nick and Norah. I’ve posted the trailer. I’m very proud [of the movie]. I will definitely be talking about that… I just don’t want people to think that my blog is sort of a commercial for myself. I wanted to avoid that.

    Tell me about your projects you have coming up. You have The Dream of the Romans, Shorts, and End Zone, and they all sound really interesting and quite different.

    Shorts is, I guess you’d call it a kids’ films, but it’s sort of not because it’s directed by Robert Rodriguez, who did Spy Kids and Sin City and all that. So it’s not going to ever be, like, a straight kids’ movie ’cause it’s full of like magic rocks and adventures and crazy things happening. I mean, I read the script and I was like, “What?!” So I would definitely, if you have a little brother, take him, but you will also have the best time. So that should be awesome.

    And then The Dreams of the Romans is a really special little movie about this writer who wrote manifestos that sort of become the new Bible, and he doesn’t want any of the attention that he’s getting and it’s sort of exploring how he feels about things. I have a very small [role], but this role is one of my favorites. I work at this bookstore … I play just a spacey, sweet little homeless girl, essentially, who works in the bookstore. Physically, it was one of my favorite — you won’t even recognize me. I don’t look like myself; it’s awesome. And End Zone, I’m not sure exactly when End Zone is happening, but the script is one of the best I’ve ever read. So it’s really incredible. And it’s based on a novel by Don DeLillo, so I hope that happens. We’ll see. It’s another one of those — sometimes you freak out about something and you get attached to something and then wait and see if it’s ever gonna happen [laughs]. Unfortunately, usually the ones that keep you waiting the longest are the best ones.

    I read in Vanity Fair that your favorite director is David Cronenberg.

    Well, that [Videodrome]’s my favorite film, for sure. Well, one of my favorite films… He is for sure one of my favorite directors… That article was fun.

    The photos were amazing! I love them. They’re so classy.

    Thank you! That was treacherous, that shoot…

    You were on a scooter, right, with Jay Baruchel?

    I don’t even know what you would call it. It looked like a boat but it was the size of a table…. The photographer was literally strapped to the front of the boat — not even strapped! He had like a bungee cord and he was sitting cross-legged on a towel and we were going full-speed in the middle of the Hudson [River]. It was really, really scary! I don’t know how they got a shot with Jay and I both looking serious because most of the time we were screaming our heads off.

    What are you reading right now?

    I’m always reading Haruki Murakami; he’s my favorite author. Haruki Murakami and Douglas Adams are my favorite authors… I’m always trying to find something that I haven’t read. Luckily Murakami’s pretty prolific… so I’ve never really run short of material. Douglas Adams is unfortunately no longer with us, but I’m always rereading everything… I love short stories. I love Katherine Mansfield. I love that era of writing. Yeah, I’m a bookworm. I read whatever I can get my paws on.

    Have you ever thought about moving from LA to New York or has your filming soured you on New York?

    [laughs] No! I mean, I’m from Philadelphia, so I was in New York all the time, and there is definitely a time and place for New York. And when I moved to LA, I felt like I wanted to kill myself for four years — I hated it here. But now I love it and I’ve [got] kind of a home base feeling here. Extended stays in New York are always awesome, and I love being there, but at this point living there might be a little much for me, only because I’m not a city girl so much and obviously it’s the most city city in the world. [laughs] You know? It’s just, there’s so much going on and I’m pretty boring, so probably not.

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