A Minute With: Jane Fonda on learning from the young comic set

Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:01am EDT
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By Mary Milliken

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actress Jane Fonda says one of the blessings of growing older is that "you learn what you can and can't do" and she freely admits she doesn't have what it takes to do comedy improv.

Fonda has 55 years in the business and two best actress Oscars on her shelf for 1978's "Coming Home" and 1972's "Klute."

But in her new comedy film "This is Where I Leave You," she was in awe of co-stars Tina Fey, Jason Bateman, Adam Driver and Ben Schwartz when it came to going off script.

Fonda spoke to Reuters about playing the vivacious mother of a dysfunctional family, the chemistry with her cast and her new favorite actor.

Q: What drew you to the role of Hilary?

A: Well, I am 76 and it is unusual to find a character that is multidimensional, funny, sassy and still has some libido going for her. People don't write those kind of roles for older women very often.

I liked the fact that it was a very well written film that had many different parts to it. It was funny, but it was also poignant. That doesn’t happen often enough and I am so proud of Warner Bros that they stood behind a film like this. A big studio these days, they go for the tent poles and special effects, so I really want the movie to do well so that it will encourage more studios to do more films like this.   Continued...

Cast member Jane Fonda poses at the premiere of "This Is Where I Leave You" in Hollywood, California September 15, 2014.  REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni