Rashida Jones on watching spy films for her upcoming “Frenemy of the State”

Rashida Jones in Celeste and Jesse Forever

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When “The Bourne Legacy” comes today, Rashida Jones will be one of the first in line to see it. At least that’s the impression she gave IFC upon learning we had just seen it before sitting down to talk about her new film, “Celeste and Jesse Forever.” “How is it? Is it good? As good as [‘The Bourne Identity’]?” she asked us, pressing for details.

Her interest was about more than just planning how to spend her weekend — just as she and her writing partner Will McCormack had previously gorged themselves on rom-coms for inspiration for “Celeste and Jesse,” they’re now watching spy films to prep for inspiration for their next writing project, “Frenemy of the State” — about a socialite who becomes a spy.

“We watched Bond movies, the ‘Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy’ BBC series, ‘The Spy Who Came in from the Cold’ with Richard Burton,” she said. “And we read Valerie Plame’s book, [‘Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House’] for lady spy things.”

Jones started writing “Frenemy of the State” as a comic book with co-writers (and husband-and-wife) Christina Weir and Nunzio DeFilippis, which was later optioned by Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment. Jones and McCormack have finished the first draft and are on to the second, but this isn’t a vanity project for the actress to star in.

“We wrote it for a 21-year-old,” Jones said, “and I don’t want to write something that I’m in again anytime soon. I think I want to keep them separate for now.”

The protagonist of “Frenemy” is Ariana Von Holmberg, an heiress who uses her tabloid globe-trotting as a cover — if she’s caught out on a ledge, she (or at least the CIA) can put out the story that she was “on a bender” to excuse her actions (never mind she’s actually been sober for two years). She basically has to keep up the persona she cultivated when she was young and immature, because her fame is something more than a desire for attention. But there are drawbacks — she has to make her successes look like accidents, such as pretending she can’t fight in a fight for her life. Her primary mission in the comics involves stopping a nuclear weapons deal.

“Spy plots are hard, really hard,” Jones laughed. “I struggled with the spy part of it. The lifestyle stuff was easy, but the spy stuff was hard.” She admitted to amnesia-envy — the plot twist behind “Total Recall” and “The Bourne Identity” which allowed filmmakers to “just create whatever you want and it just is what it is. It’s such a good plot point.”

Eventually, Jones would like to direct a film as well as write one, but not just yet. “Will and I have talked about maybe the next thing we write, me directing it, too,” she said. “It wasn’t the thing I grew up wanting to do, but as actors, we have a lot of sensitivity for other actors — what they need, what they don’t need. So we’ll see. But I would never direct myself,” she conceded. “I couldn’t do that.”

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.


It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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