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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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    Michael Cera and Kat Dennings on 'Nick and Norah'

    2008, February 10   |   Written by Karl Rozemeyer

    The hot young stars of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist talk about faking orgasms, swapping gum, and filming in the big city.

    In Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Nick and Norah’s big city adventure begins with a lie. Caught in a rock and a hard place at the Lower East Side’s famous Arlene’s Grocery, Norah walks up to a complete stranger and says, “Would you be my boyfriend for five minutes?” Norah’s trying to look good in front of her snotty frenemy Tris — little does she know that the guy she’s kissing, Nick, is also Tris’ ex, and the same guy who has been sending Tris the amazing mix CDs that Norah’s been fishing out of the garbage.

    Their meeting turns into a mission is to find a hush-hush late-night concert performed by their fave indie-rock band on Manhattan’s Lower East Side and in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. But when Nick (Michael Cera of Juno, Superbad, and Arrested Development) and Norah (Kat Dennings of The House Bunny and The 40-Year-Old Virgin) head out into the New York night, they find more than they expected. The two young rising stars chat about that orgasmic scene, swapping gum and watching themselves on screen.

    What is the key to romantic chemistry? Did you know each other before this film?

    Kat Dennings: We had met a couple times and hung out a little bit. We did just a lot of rehearsal with [director] Peter [Sollett] and got to know each other really well first. And through the whole shoot we got to know each other a little better, so that helped.

    Michael Cera: It’s like any acting, I think. You’ve got to trust each other and listen to each other, and [work] off what the other person is doing.

    Coming off The House Bunny, this must have been a different project. The House Bunny is a heightened reality type of comedy whereas this, even if it has some lavish situations, is very grounded. Does that present a different set of challenges a an actress, or do you approach it in the same way?

    Kat Dennings: I just think about the person more than the film. I knew with The House Bunny what it was gonna be. I wore a wig through the whole thing and had hilarious costumes and everything around was pink. But I didn’t want to make [the character of Mona] a fantastical person. I just thought she would be like this, and Norah would be like that. I didn’t really contextualize it. Maybe I should start doing that.

    New York is a character in and of itself. How was it shooting nights in the city?

    Kat Dennings: It was great. It was like a big city camp.

    Michael Cera: It was fun. We were around the same vicinity for a lot of the movie, like the East Village and the Lower East Side. And we could walk to work a lot of times and walk home. It was really nice.

    Kat Dennings: It was nice community feeling. I grew up literally in the woods [in Pennsylvania], and I never really had a neighborhood so it almost felt like a tiny little woods.

    Did you guys have any discussions at all about the orgasm scene in the recording studio, and what the purpose of it was, and why it was included in the film?

    Kat Dennings: It is said that Norah has never had an orgasm. [But] it is not really about the orgasm. It is symbolizing, if you wanna go there, Norah finally letting go. She is so wound up. It is probably just an audio tool to show that she has finally let herself go.

    How was it to do that scene?

    Kat Dennings: Really uncomfortable… Really, really.

    Remember Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally?

    Kat Dennings: That was funny, though. This was uncomfortable. It was our last day of shooting, and we were on a closed set on a soundstage in Brooklyn. There was a lot of echo, and people were trying not to look at us. It was the one day we had a new set photographer. Remember? The one day. We had the same person take stills of us to use for publicity, and it was this great woman the whole time. And then that day of the orgasm scene, there was a new male photographer. It was really uncomfortable. He was nice! It was just that he was new. Pete, I remember, took me aside and tried to make me as comfortable as I could be. He wrote out my orgasm for me phonetically just to make me feel like I had something to literally go off of… If it hadn’t been for Pete, I would have been lost at sea, in a sea of panic.

    Michael Cera: Yeah. You have to really choreograph those things. It makes it a lot less awkward.

    Kat Dennings: And [to Cera] you were there. Thank God! And it was just audio. But Mike stayed with me. If I were alone, I would…

    Michael Cera: That would have been rough to do like in a sound booth.

    Kat Dennings: Yeah. When I was doing it, I was like, “Oh, please God! Don’t let me have to ADR [Additional Dialogue Recording]. Please don’t let me have to do this over on a sound stage!”

    Michael Cera: I’m sure everyone on set was [feeling uncomfortable]. You feel pretty vulnerable when you are doing something like that, and I think everyone was pretty sensitive to that. It would be weird if anyone was comfortable [giggles]. But it was fine, we got through it.

    Do you think the film is a snapshot of a generation?

    Kat Dennings: It is a nice snapshot, if that’s true…

    Michael Cera: I think it is a certain kind of group of people that are part of this generation. I don’t think everyone is like this. There are so many different kinds of people, I think, and at this age especially. But it is definitely a window into a certain kind of culture.

    The iPod generation. Do you guys see yourselves reflected in that generation?

    Michael Cera: No, I have never been too big a part of that.

    Kat Dennings: I generally feel pretty disenfranchised all the time [laughs]. I never identified with it very much any way.

    Not the Facebook generation either?

    Kat Dennings: No, I think Facebook is great. If you want to find people you went to pre-school with, I think it is genius. I don’t know. I think it is great that technology making [strides]. I don’t hate anything. Except for people who don’t like kittens. I hate those people!

    Michael, people perceive you as the guy specialized in doing shy teenagers. Do you want to fight against that now, go against type?

    Michael Cera: Ah, no. I don’t see the point. I don’t really think in those terms. I go by the script and the director, normally, and who is involved.

    The film captures the energy of a great night out. Do you guys remember your last great night out, something that went almost all night?

    Kat Dennings: I remember one that that just occurred to me. My friends and I from Philadelphia decided to go camping in my friend’s back yard. We had a nice tent, and we were trying to sleep and then discovered a giant spider in it, and all freaked out, left the tent. And all three of us slept in her hammock overnight and told ghost stories and basically stayed up, freaked out till the sun rose, shivering. And the hammock was, like, touching the grass. And then we ate Popsicles. It was awesome.

    I have to ask about that gum? Did Ari [Graynor, who plays Caroline] actually take the gum from the toilet and put it in her mouth?

    Kat Dennings: I can’t imagine! I wasn’t there for that specific moment but Ari Graynor really goes above and beyond the call of gum duty. I don’t think anyone would make ever make her one-cut that one. I am sure there was a grip off-camera with a spritz to make the gum look wet. But I can tell you that when she takes the gum out of her mouth and gives it to me and I put it in my mouth, there is no cut. We exchanged the gum. It is demented, our friendship.

    When you guys did press on stage, you looked a little uncomfortable. Do you think it is good for an actor to be a bit shy? How do you deal with that?

    Michael Cera: Some people are really comfortable in those situations and are good at that stuff. I don’t think it is good to be shy or good to be either way.

    Are you a shy person?

    Michael Cera: No. I am talking right now, and this is fine.

    Kat Dennings: You are pretty straightforward [to Cera]. He says what he thinks.

    Michael Cera: Yeah. On stage, it is very strange.

    Kat Dennings: When shooting a scene, millions of people will watch it. But you don’t realize that.

    Michael Cera: That is a lot more intimate, though, because you are just with the crew that you have been closely working with, and they are people you know.

    Kat Dennings: Yeah, it is very intimate.

    Michael Cera: And then when it comes out, you can’t believe that this movie that you were working on every day is this now.

    Regardless of whether or not you are shy, actors commonly have a lot of trouble watching themselves on screen. Are you able to disconnect?

    Kat Dennings: I do. It takes me eight — I counted them — eight watchings of something I am in but forcing myself. That is when I can feel like I am watching another person [after eight viewings]. But this one is really the only one that I haven’t [needed to have so many viewings], and that is really saying something. I am very critical.

    During the shooting, do you watch the rushes?

    Kat Dennings: No. I did that once on another film and I consciously [thought], “Oh, don’t stand like that. I look terrible!” I hate the sound of my own voice. I hate it. And when I hear it played back, I am like, “Oh, God! How can anyone sit through two hours of this! Not me. [laughs]

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