Catching Up With Kristin Chenoweth


By Phillip B. Crook

Out chatted with Chenoweth about playing against her type, advocating for AIDS awareness, and -- just because -- Kathy Griffin.

Known for her chirpy voice, blond top, and diminutive stature, Kristin Chenoweth thinks you'd be surprised how different she really is from her quirky 'good-girl' characters. But that's not to say the Bible-Belt-native doesn't still have a heart of gold. She's teamed up with Listerine and America's Toothfairy -- a national nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring all children can receive the comprehensive oral health care they deserve -- for the 'Your Mouth Has Something To Say' campaign, which encourages children to be proud of their smiles.

To find out what her mouth has to say, Out chatted with Chenoweth about playing against her type, advocating for AIDS awareness, and -- just because -- Kathy Griffin.

Out: What's your first memory of the tooth fairy?
Kristin Chenoweth: Obviously I'm a big tooth fairy person -- growing up, not anymore -- but I always got $1. Back then that was pretty good. But now kids get like $20.

If you could choose anyone to be your personal tooth fairy, who would it be?
Carol Burnett, because she would make it really fun and make me laugh.

Considering that you're working with Listerine's "Your Mouth Has Something To Say" campaign, I want to know if your mouth ever gets you in trouble.
All the time! I've been known to use phrases on talk shows or in an interview that you just shouldn't use. I might have told PETA that I wear leather and eat meat.

A lot of the characters in your career have been good girls with a twist. Why are you drawn to those roles?
Sardonic humor. It's complicated to play that kind of person, so that makes it fun. I really love to work, and anytime I get to challenge myself with that kind of part, I love to do it. They've all been spun off of each other. If I just played myself, no one would watch. I'm pretty boring.

Which character is closest to who you are?
I did this Lifetime movie called 12 Men of Christmas and played a hardworking, single girl. Type-A personality. But that's it. Everyone else has been so different.

What is your dream against-type role?
I'd love to be in a horror film where I'm the killer. I think I'm going to make that happen, even if I have to write and produce it myself. It'll be called Don't Get in My Way.

That sounds like another Lifetime movie.
[Laughs] Or maybe Don't Get in My Way or You'll Get Your Head Chopped Off.

Congratulations on your new show for ABC, Good Christian Belles, due out this fall. What can you tell us about your character?
It's a group of women who grew up together in Texas and all go to the same church. Each of the personalities is so different, but what's great about playing this part is that she's the pot-stirrer. That makes her fun to play. Most people watching are going to be able to say, 'I know that person.' I'm excited to get back on TV. I've been on Broadway, but my plan was always to go back after Pushing Daisies.

Do you think it's telling that they changed the name from "Bitches" to "Belles"?
That's more of a network thing. You know, if I owned the network'

Tags: Interviews