[17 February 2009]
McClatchy Newspapers (MCT)
Amy Sedaris says she uses intuition all the time in her daily life. She seems to sense when things are going to happen. But she had no clue that a role was written for her by the people behind the cable series “The Closer.” Her two-episode arc started at 9 p.m. EST Monday.
“I was just asked by my management which television shows I liked. And I do like ‘The Closer.’ Later, they told me the role was created for me,” Sedaris says in a telephone interview. “I never saw myself in this kind of role because I never think I am good enough for any role. I am the kind of person who would talk you out of casting me.”
Intuition aside, she got the guest-star role in an unpredictable way. It would have been natural to cast Sedaris as Kyra Sedgwick’s sister. They sort of look like they could be related. And Sedaris is a native of North Carolina, so she would have no trouble with the Southern accent that Sedgwick uses on the show.
That would have been too easy. The writers went a different direction. Instead of playing the sister of Deputy Chief Brenda Johnson, Sedgwick’s character, Sedaris portrays Claire, the sister of Johnson’s fiance, FBI Special Agent Fritz Howard (Jon Tenney).
“They thought it would be interesting that Claire looks like Brenda,” Sedaris says.
Sedaris didn’t see the role coming. So much for intuition. But as soon as the part was offered, she embraced it. That’s because she is a fan of Sedgwick and television mysteries. And she has appeared on mystery-crime shows such “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”
While she enjoyed the role on “SVU,” she feels more comfortable in detective series such as “The Closer” and “Monk.” Those programs allow her to show the comedy skills she honed while part of Chicago’s Second City comedy troupe.
Comedy skills came in handy with “The Closer” role. Sedaris’ character fancies herself a psychic, so she’s a bit eccentric and goofy.
The “Closer” gig is just the latest job for the busy actress. She has appeared in numerous films - “Gym Teacher,” “Snow Angels” and “Shrek 3” - and television shows from “Sesame Street” to “Rescue Me.”
Sedaris says there’s a chance she might return for another appearance on “The Closer.”
“I don’t die,” she says of her character on the two-episode story.