When FOX didn’t renew “The Mindy Project” hearts were broken all over this Mindy Crazed World. Luckily HULU picked up the series and it will be returning September 15. We got the chance to talk to Beth Grant the actor who plays our favorite quirky and sometimes inappropriate office assistant, Beverly on “The Mindy Project”.
Beth talks about similarities between her and the character she plays, being a Mindy Kaling fan girl and masturbation.
Q: You said you were busy writing today, what are you working on?
I love my job!!!
I’m writing a Broadway Musical right now based in 1969 NYC Greenwich Village. It’s a coming of age story, not exactly my story it’s kind of a pink colored glasses view of NYC in the 70’s during a lot of change.
Q: Where do you find time to work on a play?
I started because Mindy Kaling is such an inspiration as a woman and as a writer. To see someone who started her career by writing a play and continued to write for The Office, publish a book and create The Mindy Project is great. I love that the title is The Mindy Project, it really is her and she earned it. I’m worse than any fan.
When I first started on The Mindy Project I would take a nap at lunch time and Mindy would go to the writer’s room. So I Started working on other projects, now I squeeze in any other project I can.
Mindy Project has motivated me to be a better person all around. I can be the woman, and all that I am and a sexual woman at my age and be me!
Q: How do you come up with the absurd things Beverly says? Is there anyone in your life that inspires you for that character?
When I first read the script she just came to me instantly! My husband says it’s because it’s me with no filter on a bad day. I am not like Beverly everyday only by the grace of God. Had I not lived the great life I live, this could’ve easily been me. This is me if I haven’t had my coffee, I have Beverly Inside me. It’s great that I get to act as her it’s like exercising the daemons inside me. There are many things that she says that are so outlandish I think we all have these voices in our head
Q: Was there a particular scene you played as Beverly that was your favorite?
One of Beth’s favorite scenes playing Beverly was the season 2 premiers where she talks about masturbation.
The scene where Beverly says, “I masturbated during the meeting,” was a big deal for me. My generation never said that. Even Seinfeld never actually said it. So when I had to say it I was like Oh my gosh! I remember being in college in health class and I learned 98% of men masturbate and it was a weight lifted off of my shoulders, but we still didn’t talk about it
As a result of that episode I created a stand up piece at Don’t Tell My Mother in NYC- a 10 min stand up about Masturbation. It was sold out. I did it and it was all thanks to Mindy.
Q: What have you learned from being on The Mindy Project and playing Beverly?
I recently worked on the film, “The Long Home” direct by James Franco, where I was doing a sex scene. I said yes of course to sex scene for the movie. When I arrived I just had a robe in my dressing room, no costume. Josh Hutcherson walks in on me having sex. It was important to the rest of the story and it was beautifully done and shocking. Being on Mindy helped me have the courage to do that. The show helps me stay young and be better about my body and as a person.
Q: How has it been switching over to Hulu?
Hulu is great because we will have looser time restraints and won’t be limited to 22 minutes. This is a very exciting time for cable companies–streaming is really coming into its own. Hulu is a great fit because we already had a home with them, people were already watching The Mindy Project on there.
I think this is the new world, I know I watch things streaming, I like being able to watch on a weekly basis. I love having access to it. Mindy has so many throw-aways because she says things under her breath and I miss things she says. I like to be able to go back a re-watch those.
Q: What does Hulu mean for your character?
More freedom! You know, Beverly hasn’t had sex on the show yet!
Q: Who would you like her to have sex with on the show?
Virtually anyone, maybe the UPS guy. Any of the doctors in a drunken stooper. We haven’t met anyone she wouldn’t hook up with.
Q: We know you’re a huge fan of Mindy, why do you think people love her so much?
Mindy’s fans are so great. My husband loves the show and says, “These guys are real guys, guys that I hang out with” It’s not just a female show. But on the other hand it’s great for professional women trying to have it all.
Q: It’s important to note to our readers that you have been on so many other great shows, including Dexter, Justified, Greys Anatomy, and The Office. Did you have a favorite?
I never feel like I have done a lot of work. I’m always thrilled to get work. I never take anything for granted and I’m just so happy when they let me on the grounds. I still think it’s like a dream! In the moment you enjoy your life and your family. I can’t explain. It’s unreal to look at your career. I didn’t have a chance, I was overweight with a southern accent and my strong personality.
Q: Beside The Mindy Project airing September 15, what other upcoming work are you excited about?
I’ve been working on a project with James Franco about Tennessee Williams. I play Tennessee Williams’ mother. As a southern woman my mother was THIS role. For the chance for me to play this role it was so great. I prepared for it my whole life as my mother’s daughter.
Photo Credit: Beth Dubber