From doomsday cult survivor to New York City dweller, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” tells the story of the eponymous young woman (Ellie Kemper), naively making her way through the dog-eat-dog world of the big city after being held in a makeshift bunker for 15 years. Innocent, cheerful and steadfast, Kimmy makes it a point not to be perceived as a helpless victim, but a survivor who’s ready to make a name for herself (even if she’s socially inept and has quite literally slept under a rock for the better part of her life).
After a bittersweet finale last season, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” fans have eagerly been waiting to hear what Kimmy and her adorably strange group of friends and family are up to this season. Indiewire braved the red carpet of the second season’s premiere, meeting the star-studded cast and showrunners to discuss just what to expect from the new season and their skyrocketing careers.
Ellie Kemper Plans to Get Personal
From the optimistic Erin on “The Office” to the idealistic Becca in “Bridesmaids,” Ellie Kemper has often played the cheerful, happy-go-lucky and wide-eyed female supporting role. Her naive, yet emotionally perceptive character has been expanded on in “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” allowing the Princeton and Oxford graduate to sink her teeth into something with more depth and flavor.
And that sense of intellectual gratification is set to continue for the multitalented Kemper who has set her eyes on expanding out of television and film to focus on another passion. “I’m trying to write some humor essays and stuff like that,” said Kemper when asked what was coming up next for her.
When asked what kind of thematic elements her writing would tackle, she noted there would be “no social criticism on this one, no. [Just] personal and humorous stuff. I’m mentioning it to you, so I make myself write it. As you know, you need a deadline,” she laughed.
Who Doesn’t Want to Work With Tina Fey?!
Tina Fey has had a careening career ever since she found her way onto (or rather behind) television. From her time at “Saturday Night Live” as a writer to her lead actor debut on “30 Rock,” the Emmy and Golden Globe-winning celebrity has had a fantastic history on the small screen. So who wouldn’t want to jump on that lauded bandwagon?
Cast members from “Orange is the New Black” also made it onto the red carpet to support the newer member of the Netflix original programming family, including Adrienne Moore, who plays “Black Cindy” on “Orange” and was also a “30 Rock” veteran. stopped by to talk about her time working with Fey on “30 Rock” and how much she would love to go back to working with the Second City alum.
“I think Tina is brilliant. I’ll go on record saying it,” Moore said. “The few times I worked on [“30 Rock”], [Fey] was so humble and so generous and so giving. She taught me a lot, because it was one of my earlier jobs. I think it was my second television job. I now want to go back and say ‘Alright Tina! I got some more training — so let’s do some work together again!”
From Broadway Star to Playwright?
Tituss Burgess won a Critics Choice Award and a Webby for his work as the flamboyant and fierce Titus Andromedon, as well as an Emmy nod that really propelled him forward towards an interesting array of projects, including the upcoming “Angry Birds” movie and “Grand Theft Auto V.”
But perhaps the most interesting of his new projects is his new Broadway involvement, which he brought up after hugging fellow “Unbreakable” star and on-screen romance Mike Carlsen (who plays Mikey). Burgess is “writing a Broadway musical,” which he said was “based on a popular film by a pop star who is no longer with us. That’s all I can say.”
Whitney Houston? Michael Jackson? Maybe even David Bowie? Only time will tell. But if it’s anything like Burgess’s stage or television presence, it’ll be a standout hit.
Kimmy Gets a Sex Life?
“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” has been seesawing on whether or not Kimmy will finally get the sexual awakening that she has been deprived of during her time in the bunker. But when asked if this season, we might see Kimmy have a sexual relationship, Fey replied, “Yeah, she’s a grown person.”
Kemper herself said that “If Tina said yes, then I’m going to repeat what my boss said. So, yes!” Was she surprised? “Yeah! I myself am prudish, so I’m always saying ‘oh my gosh!’ Even kisses. So yeah, I was surprised. Without giving anything away or going into details, I think it’s handled very well and treated with the care that it deserves.”
And that means no nudity: “Our show is still very wholesome,” Kemper said, laughing. “No one wants to see that.”
All episodes of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” Season 2 premiere April 15 on Netflix.
READ MORE: Watch: ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ Season 2 Trailer Is An Adorably Fierce Dream Come True