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Oscars 2012: For Melissa McCarthy, emotion is the heart of comedy

January 24, 2012 |  2:22 pm

Melissa McCarthy and her husband and Bridesmaids costar Ben Falcone
How did “Bridesmaids” costar Melissa McCarthy celebrate the early morning news of her supporting actress Oscar nomination? “I had a diaper to change. So the glamour? That went away pretty quickly.”

Actually, considering McCarthy’s memorable moments in “Bridesmaids,” perhaps little Georgie McCarthy came up with the perfect way to mark the moment. In the ribald film, McCarthy’s character Megan is forced by necessity to use a sink as a toilet, which likely gives her a singular claim in the long and illustrious history of Academy Award nominees.

 “Bridesmaids” writers Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo were also nominated, in the original screenplay category, and McCarthy said that was a source of great pride for everyone involved in the project. The script was hammered and sculpted for five years — the writers strike was one factor — and in the end that made for a movie that was carefully considered from every angle. McCarthy said more and more comedies go too far with their shocking moments or relentless gags and lose “the emotional story at the center” that keeps audiences invested in the movie.

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“It’s all so real and so absurd at the same time,” McCarthy said of the final film.

 With “Midnight in Paris” and “The Artist” earning key nominations, it was a strong year for comedy and lighter-touch films in the Oscar races that usually favor heavy dramas. McCarthy was happy to see that, but she said in most years the absence of comedies is not inappropriate — too many comedies feel like they “need one more pass” to be polished, tightened and refocused on the human heart beating between the laughs.

 “I’m hard on comedies because I love them so much,” said the actress, who also stars on the CBS sitcom “Mike & Molly.” “It’s nice to see comedies are back.”

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Photo: Melissa McCarthy with her husband and "Bridesmaids" costar Ben Falcone at the Critics Choice Movie Awards earlier this month. Credit:  Matt Sayles/Associated Press.


 
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