Ari Graynor on her phone sex comedy “For a Good Time, Call…” and how it’s less raunchy than you think

Lauren Miller and Ari Graynor in For a Good Time, Call...

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Call 1-877-MMM-HMMM, the fictional phone line set up in the phone sex comedy “For a Good Time, Call…” and you might hear the voice of Lena Dunham, confessing she used to think oral sex meant talking about sex. (A different celeb is featured each day). Or go to a feature on the film’s website, and you can hear the film’s co- stars entice you to make a make a Mad Lib of phone sex, mixing and matching phrases like “Squeeze my…” or “Put it in my…” with various body parts and orgasmic sighs. (Ari Graynor’s squeal of “Balls!” is quite enthusiastic).

“It sounds so much raunchier and dirtier than it is,” Graynor laughed when talking about the film’s premise with IFC. “But we tie it up with a pretty pink bow. This is by no means a porno.”

Graynor tried to make her dirty talk as funny and “not overtly sexual” as possible, but it was a “tricky line to walk.” It helped when the caller was in the room, such as when Miller’s husband Seth Rogen shot his cameo. (His character is seen in a bathroom, but during the shoot, he hid next to the bed while Miller and Graynor entertained him on the line). Other cameos included Kevin Smith and Ken Marino as callers.

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“On our first day of shooting, the first shot of the movie that we did was me on the bed for the coverage for what ended up being Kevin on the other line,” Graynor said. “At the time, I was just reading my lines with the script supervisor, just dry reads, so I was so grateful and lucky to have Seth there for his scene. And he was so good at it!”

In the film, Graynor plays Katie (modeled after Lauren Anne Miller’s co-writer and former roommate Katie Anne Naylon, who once worked as a phone sex operator), who goes into the business with her new roommate Lauren (modeled after Lauren herself).

“The movie is so meta,” Graynor said. “You have me doing a version of Katie, Lauren doing a version of Lauren, and even Justin Long was doing a version of our director [Jamie Travis], which really cracked me up.” (Long was first asked to play a caller-turned-love interest, but instead took the part of the gay best friend who brings the two girls together.)

Like the real-life Katie was when she did phone sex, the character Katie is a virgin for most of the movie — which might be surprising considering how open about sex she is.

“I think part of it about owning your sexuality and taking the shame out of it,” Graynor said. “We have so many hang-ups, and so much judgment about women and sexuality that it’s deeply unsettling and unfair. Think about how many films have so much violence and are PG-13, and hardly anyone registers it or comments on the fact that so many people are killed in them. But God forbid a woman has an orgasm — that’s a ratings killer. So maybe we can help destigmatize that, get the culture to lighten up a bit.

While working on the film, Graynor was also doing “Relatively Speaking” on Broadway, which took a toll on her voice — “I was much lower and raspier, which I think worked well for this,” she said. “And recording those lines in ADR felt oddly more like having phone sex anyway.” She jokes that if her acting career doesn’t pan out, she has a second career option now. “I wouldn’t have thought of phone sex as my fallback position,” she laughed. “But if I do it, I want a hot pink phone!”

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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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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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