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June 21, 2013

Julia Louis-Dreyfus Talks Veep Secrets

Julia Louis-Dreyfus discusses how to run in heels and what else the Emmy Award winner has learned from playing the self-serving, ineffectual Vice President Selina Meyer on HBO's Veep.

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Marie Claire: You recently had lunch at the White House with Vice President Joe Biden. How was that?
Julia Louis-Dreyfus: It's funny—his staff was very knowledgeable about Veep, and they were introducing themselves like, "I'm the Gary here"; "I'm the Dan Egan here." And the VP could not have been more charming. He was making jokes about how he wishes he could hit his staff members on the head with a newspaper, like I do on the show.

MC: Speaking of the newspaper incident, your character has an amazing ability to cut people down, like the time she called the president's senior strategist a "thick rubber condom." What's your favorite insult from this season?
JLD: I'm a big fan of Jolly Green Jizz-Face. That's a good one.

MC: Given your comedic background, do you ever improvise lines?
JLD: There's an enormous amount of going off script, but first and foremost, the show is definitely written. So it's not the case that we just sort of make things up and whatever works sticks. The writing process is very present.

MC: Do you have a trick for delivering the perfect zinger?
JLD: Hire a brilliant writing staff from the U.K. Seriously. 

MC: Who curses more, you or Selina?
JLD: Selina. I'm a better editor. I may curse more in my brain, but I have a better filter.

MC: Have you learned anything from Selina's managerial style?
JLD: I think it's safe to say that anything she does from a managerial point of view, you should do the opposite, if you're trying to do it right.

MC: Do you think the veep would be a fan of leaning in?
JLD: I don't think Selina would be in favor of leaning in. She's in favor of throwing herself at.

MC: You're often booking it in crazy-tall shoes on the show. Any tips for running in heels?
JLD: Try not to do it. It's not great for your legs and back. Toward the end of the season, I was really feeling it. So I guess just lean in.

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