‘New Girl’: Jake Johnson Revealed Why ‘Everyone Kind of Hated’ Him and Max Greenfield on Set
The New Girl cast was like a family during the show’s seven seasons and the actors have fond memories of their time working on the series. Jake Johnson, who played Nick Miller, recalled how “everyone kind of hated” him and Max Greenfield, who played Schmidt. The two actors had a little too much fun sometimes on set.
Jake Johnson said the ‘New Girl’ crew got ‘so sick’ of him and Max Greenfield
In a September 2021 interview with Us Weekly, Johnson dished on his time on New Girl, sharing that his scenes with Greenfield involved a fair amount of improv that the show’s crew didn’t always love.
“Nick and Schmidt, those [scenes] were so fun,” Johnson said. “I really, really miss doing comedy with Max because we knew the bits so well.”
He continued, “And also our crew was so sick of us because we improvised so much. So doing comedy for a group of people who kind of don’t think you’re funny for me is my favorite. Like, when you’re performing and everybody loves it and is into it, it’s fun, but it’s way better when there’s like a grumpy old guy behind the camera who thinks that you’re wasting his time.”
The actor added, “It makes everything 10 times funnier. So everyone kind of hated Max and me.”
Johnson explained why he loves TV so much
Johnson also shared some perspective about working on TV versus filming movies. For him, TV is a more enjoyable experience because he gets to work with a cast on storytelling and character development. There just isn’t the same opportunity with a movie.
“I love television. I will always like it more than films because I like working with the same people and I like stories that build,” Johnson said. “People talk about Nick Miller a lot and what they like about him. Well, part of that is we had seven years to develop that character. Characters can change and grow.”
In comparison, he said, “for a movie, you have an hour and a half and then they are gone.”
Johnson continued, explaining that he misses working with “unbelievable writers who write really funny situations.”
TV allows the cast to have an extended time together to get to know each other’s talents. “Why I’m excited to go back to TV is I like knowing where my costars are really funny,” Johnson said. “And I like them knowing where I’m really funny. So doing a scene with Max Greenfield, he could set me up in a way that other people can’t.”
The ‘New Girl’ cast has stayed in touch
Similarly, scenes with Zooey Deschanel provided opportunities to really allow each actor to shine while working collaboratively. “I know where Zooey’s funny and Zooey knows where I’m funny and we both can make each other laugh,” Johnson explained.
He shared that there’s a “rhythm” with working on a TV set, but a movie is more “like a first date.” Johnson shared, “I like having old relationships because I think it makes the work together richer. There is more depth. It’s more fun.”
The actor added, “So I miss the knowledge of each other, the years of experience, and the just knowing each other’s stuff.”
“What’s great about New Girl is all those relationships. And we were like a family. We battled and we laughed. And now we keep talking to each other because the thing is still alive,” Johnson said.