Skip to comments.From Playboy to The Daily Show (Olivia Munn: I Scored 'Daily Show' Gig With Holocaust Joke)
Posted on 06/08/2010 9:04:57 PM PDT by nickcarraway
nternet star Olivia Munn has joined The Daily Show, not previously known for its hot women of color. Denise Martin talks to her about OCD and joking about the Holocaust with Jon Stewart.
Maybe it says something about The Daily Show producers that they didnt already know who Olivia Munn was before asking her to join their team of fake news correspondents.
Because if youre a guyas all but two of the Daily Show writers areand youre online, chances are youve stumbled across pictures of Munn on the covers of Playboy and Maxim. Youve probably seen the videos of her chomping down on wieners (6.8 million views on YouTube dont lie), or once, a cucumber that had just been down the pants of her co-host Kevin Pereira on G4s Attack of the Show, a series that has also seen Munn dive into a massive pie wearing a French maid outfit, and parade around nerd herd convention Comic-Con dressed as Princess Leia.
We lived in hell growing up and my mom was in her own kind of hell, so it was hard for her... but she couldnt stand up for me, Munn said. The first time in my life Ive felt true support is from my fans and I would never betray them.
Then theres the stuff that comes out of her mouth. Her thoughts about anal sex (Penises? No. Baby carrots? Sure), her nude ads for PETA (Save the Elephants! Boycott the circus!) and tabloid-licious ex-boyfriend Chris Pine (Captain Kirk to the dudes) are all well-publicized fodder among the Web-savvy.
But no. Daily Show Executive Producer Rory Albanese said it was only recently that he and host Jon Stewart discovered cable network G4s most prized possession: a hot girl wholl do anything for a laugh. We're stuck in a hard news cycle and were nerdy, Albanese said. If she was on the cover of The Economist, we would have been like, 'Yes! Of course!
And yet last Thursday, there was Munn delivering her first reported segment on the Comedy Central show about how the BP oil spill has affected Vietnamese fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico. Stewart introduced her as the shows new Senior Asian Correspondent.
Just how did the host of a fledgling cable-network series go from doing the truffle shuffle to The Daily Show? The gig was but a Holocaust joke away.
In the first 10 minutes of my meeting with Jon, I made some kind of Holocaust jokeand by the way? Its always too soonand he died laughing. He was like, Wow, you open up with the Holocaust? Munn recalled. I said, No, no, it's cool. I dated a Jewish guy! (That would be actor Bryan Greenberg of HBOs How to Make It in America.)
See I date different guys of different religions and races so I can always make the joke, she continued. I date the blacks, I date the Mexicans. I date 'em all for comedy. You can't buy that kind of gold. Having sex with a guy once is worth it.
We just wanted to make sure our sense of humor clicked with hers, said Albanese. The show, he said, is always looking to add women to its roster of correspondents, having been accused in the past of not having enough female voices in its mix. When we watched Olivia on G4, we saw all the things we need on The Daily Show. Shes got great comedic timing, shes smart and shes very good off the cuff. We certainly didnt know she was just on Maxim, and it really doesnt matter. We just needed to find out if she was into joining us.
While her deal with the show is not yet final, its simply a matter of sorting out Munns packed schedule. Shes like the female Ryan Seacrest, Albanese said. Munn will continue to host Attack of the Show in Los Angeles while filming segments for The Daily Show on both coasts. She will be busy promoting her book, a collection of essays titled Suck It, Wonder Woman: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek, which comes out next month. And as if she had room for anything else, shell star in NBCs midseason sitcom Perfect Couples.
Jon Pollack, an executive producer on Perfect Couples, said Munns name was given to him by Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, with whom he had worked as a consulting producer on 30 Rock. Whats great about Olivias comedy is that she really understands herself and she just goes for it. Shes not self-conscious or afraid of being goofy, even though shes obviously beautiful. She probably doesnt even need to work as hard because of that and yet theres no one more driven.
Munn may be a sexpot online but she is no Tila Tequila. Nor is she like any of her fame-hungry peers who do little more than turn up to red carpet after red carpet in the hope of landing in the pages of Us Weekly. Munn, who turns 30 next month, has wanted to be a comedic actress since she can remember and her fame, while not yet entirely mainstream, has been hard won. Munn was born in Oklahoma City, the daughter of a white father and a Chinese mother who had been raised in Vietnam. Munn, who grew up in a military family, moved back and forth between the U.S. and Japan. The moving was rough on her, as was growing up with a horrible stepfather. I think thats where it came from, this need I have to make everyone laugh, Munn said.
While in Japan, her mom would have friends in the U.S. mail VHS tapes of Laverne and Shirley and I Love Lucy. Munn also took a liking to Saturday Night LiveChevy Chase, oh my God, yes, she saidand named Punky Brewster as her role model in inhibition.
I was the dirty kid, so of course I loved Punky, who was totally OK with herself, Munn said. After studying theater and journalism at the University of Oklahoma, she flew out to L.A. and immediately landed parts in the Rob Schneider comedy Big Stan, a recurring role on the Nickelodeon show Beyond the Break, and lots of modeling and commercial work. Then she auditioned for G4s Attack of the Show, a talk show for tech geeks that was seeking, well, a broader, less geeky audience.
Shes totally unfiltered and our viewers immediately got and appreciated that, said G4 President Neal Tiles. These guys who watch the channel have seen it all before and Olivia comes in up for anything and I think thats why everyone fell in love with her.
Munn was an instant hitand shes stayed grateful to those fans these four past years. It did, however, take a beat to adjust to being well-known on the Internet. At first it was like an old man luring in little girls with candy... You go in and its like, Oh, candy! Theyre saying nice things!' And then its like, Oh, God! Anally raped.' That's not what I wanted. I just wanted the candy. And I got candy, but oh, it's not worth it."
Shes now fully adjusted. Munn has personally organized mass meet-ups with herself and members of OMFG (Olivia Munn Fan Group), will spend hours signing autographs, and her website is custom-built to cater to her most ardent admirers. Its filled with regular updates, lots of sexy pictures and her homemade videos of random silliness. (Among the most popular? A video of her dancing with stormtroopers in the streets of Shibuya. Why? No reason in particular.) Shes unafraid to keep things real when it comes to her level of celebrity, too.
I cannot put my mind around celebrities who aren't thankful or who dont take pictures with fans, Munn said. I will never be like that.
You know what hit me yesterday? she asked rhetorically. I've never in my life had anyone say that they would stand up for me and defend me. My mother is the best now but my ex-stepfather was terrible. We lived in hell growing up and my mom was in her own kind of hell, so it was hard for her but she couldn't stand up for me. I moved around a lot so I never had that one best friend that would stand up either. The first time in my life I've felt true support is from my fans and I would never betray them.
Her profile is only going to rise. Even before she scored cameos in Iron Man 2 and Date Night, paparazzi had a field day with Munn when she went to Los Angeles Pleasure Chest on a condom run, or more recently when her rabid fans squeezed out Gossip Girl star Ed Westwick from the Roosevelt Hotel.
How shell juggle more attention and three TV series over the next few months remains unclear. Munn says her obsessive-compulsive disorder will come in handy. It means Im ridiculously overprepared for everything, but especially work. I work really hard and a lot of hours, she said. I also have the urge to clean a lot. Whatever happens, Munn isn't going be any less outspoken than she has been. "If I tried to please everyone, I'd please no one. So I might as well stick to saying what I think." (When Best Week Ever poked fun at her PETA campaign, she was not kind.)
Still, she gets emotional thinking about her journey. Less than 48 hours after her Daily Show debut, Munn found herself crying while alone on an airplane. Its the third time in my life where Ive cried out of happiness. Its just blowing my mind that I can do this NBC showand f------ Jon Stewart. Its like, are you f------ kidding me?
This thread is worthless without pics...:)
Is she still going to do Attack of the Show? I have no intent of watching Stewart, Munn or not.
I've always liked this one.
This cant be said enough...NOT GUILTY!
Pick it up at about 2:30.
She’s O.K., but not a beauty by any stretch of the imagination.
Got that right...and her second toe is longer than her big toe. She needs to cover those feet.
“Shes O.K., but not a beauty by any stretch of the imagination.”
I don’t know. My imagination can stretch pretty far...
As the resident, babe-hound on FR, I would have to say that I have seen better...
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