As the out Tony nominee ends his fourth season on Girls, he talks co-stars, sex scenes and what it would take to get him back on Broadway.
Andrew Rannells won’t soon be living down the handjob he gave to a boy in a bathroom. Thanks to Lena Dunham and the other writers turning out sharp social commentary and anecdotal writing for this current installment of HBO’s Girls, now finishing up its fourth season, the theater-turned-TV star didn’t just speed-race his way through a handy — he’s danced, de-clothed and continued to lambast the fogey fashions of Dunham’s Hannah. And god bless him for it.
— Chris Azzopardi
Dallas Voice: So, Andrew, what’s up with Marnie getting all the sexy sex scenes on Girls? Andrew Rannells: I know! She gets to do all sorts of crazy shit this year and poor Elijah just gets an awkward handjob in the bathroom. We’ll see if we can’t fix that.
I like seeing the gender roles being subverted, though. Most people would expect to see the gay guy getting rimmed, not Marnie. That is true. Lena’s pushing boundaries all over the place!
How did you end up with a bigger role on the show, especially this season? Well, I was really excited: Last season was the first season that I got to be a full-fledged regular on Girls. They’ve always done such an amazing job of making me feel like a full part of that team, but last year was the first season that I really got to just be devoted strictly to them. In the past, during the first season, I was still doing The Book of Mormon, so with the second season, I only got to do half of it. And then we started The New Normal, and then after The New Normal ended I got to do the back end of the third season. They’ve always been so welcoming, and I’m just thrilled to be a full-time cast member over there.
I mean, literally, I don’t think it was even 20 minutes after they had made the announcement that The New Normal was canceled that I got phone calls — one from [executive producer] Jenni Konner, one from [executive producer] Judd Apatow and one from Lena Dunham — all saying, “Please come back and join us.” Even though they had started prep for their season, they worked me in very quickly. Again, I’m so grateful to them and so touched that they include me. I feel really at home with that group.
Which of the Girls characters would you most likely hang out with in real life? Lena and I actually hang out a fair amount, and Allison [Williams] and I hang out a fair amount as well. Particularly during this past year, [Allison and I have] kept in very close contact over our hiatus, which is great. Character-wise, I feel like it might be a Marnie situation, I think. I know that she’s a little high-strung, but, particularly now with her new sexual awakening, I feel like she would be a fun girl to hang out with.