Lily Tomlin on Admission, Tina Fey, and Girls
You used to go to showrunners and ask to guest-star on their programs: The X Files, The West Wing, Damages. Is there anything you’d like to be on today?
A lot of jobs I got like that. I got on Damages because I was mad for it, and The West Wing because I was bereft that I wasn’t on it. I went up to Chris Carter and I said, “I want to be on it!” when The X Files first came on. “Anything?” I’m sorry to say I like all the crime shows, but I have a heavy reaction if there’s too many dead females in the plot. I’ve turned down some decent roles, because you have to jump from twenty stories and go through the roof of a bus, and you’re all mangled. So I always hate those. And I don’t want to hold up people who have no virtue whatsoever as role models, because we fall in love with those people! It’s like Tony Soprano, he’s a real brute. Throws some girl over the desk and fucks her from behind, and then he’d go to the psychiatrist and we empathize with him. For adults, we should be able to absorb that and come out the other side in a wholesome way, but it’s hard. Tell me some shows you like, and I’ll tell you if I want to be on them.