Spotlight by: Andrea Tuccillo
John Krasinski has luck on his side and he’s the first to admit it. He’s got an award-winning television show under his belt, playing the cute paper salesman and office prankster Jim Halpert on NBC’s The Office. As Jim, he’s also the tentative love interest for the receptionist Pam. Their will-they-or-won’t-they romance has turned them into one of the most beloved couples on T.V. Now, Krasinski is breaking into film. He has had blink-and-you’ll-miss-him guest appearances in movies like Dreamgirls and The Holiday, but with his new film License to Wed he’s finally able to claim leading man status. Through it all though, Krasinski remains refreshingly humble and gracious. Possessing adorable good looks and approachable charm, it’s easy to see why he’s so successful.
“I’ll be the first person to admit that I’m the luckiest guy in the world,” he says without a hint of falseness. “I don’t need someone else to tell me because I was waiting tables four years ago and The Office was just a complete fluke and is one of those things you hear where it’s just a right place at the right time, and I just got really lucky. Those things still happen. And I feel that way about everything I’m doing. I’m getting to work with such great people.”
One of those people happens to be Robin Williams. Williams plays Reverend Frank in License to Wed, a minister who convinces a newly engaged couple (played by Krasinski and Mandy Moore) to participate in a marriage preparation course that ends up causing more harm than good. Having been a huge fan of Williams since he was a kid, Krasinski was unbelievably excited to be working with him on this film. Though it was hard to keep a straight face while filming opposite the comedic
“I think no matter what you’re doing working with Robin Williams is an incredible experience and honor,” he says. “I think that he’s the best of the best and not only because he’s extremely funny or is a huge star, he’s also extremely kind and his enthusiasm every day was overwhelming to the point that you had to be as good as he was every day. It was a great learning experience too, but so much fun. I think I got an amazing ab workout laughing so hard!”
“Working with Mandy was really a fun experience because she has way more experience than I do and yet she’s still this grounded, super-sweet, amazingly kind girl,” he says. “And not to mention she’s gorgeous so it’s pretty intimidating on all fronts. To be working in comedy with Robin and then doing a love scene with Mandyâ€”you have to do more than pinch yourself.”
For Krasinski, the transition from television to film was as smooth as can be. “The truth is I don’t see The Office as a television show and not at all in some weird, pretentious way,” he explains. “What I mean is that we shoot it like a movieâ€¦and because it’s a documentary it’s a lot like theater because you’re working with the same people everyday and you’re on the same stage. So, it didn’t feel much different than going to a film set. When you have someone like Steve Carell on the show you’re around an awesome talent who’s inspiring so you sort of have that too. Going to do License to Wed and having
He may be making movies now, but his heart still lies with his nine-to-five job at The Office. While he’s unsure where the storyline is headed for next season, he is sure about one thing. “[The writers] have been so dedicated to keeping the show real, and that’s what I want,” he says. “I want people to commiserate with the characters in a way that they don’t on other shows because they feel like it’s written or they feel like it’s a moment to be dramatic, it’s a dramatic moment to get ratings. One of my favorite scenes on The Office is in the Booze Cruise [episode] when I should tell Pam that I love her finally and I get the open door and I say nothing. To me, the perfect TV moment would be to say I love you and then the sun rises perfectly and we kiss and probably some music that’s incredible. And here I am just being this average Joe who has nothing to say, because that’s how I’d do it. I would have nothing to say to the girl that I should tell her I love her. For that reason I think a lot of people connect to the show.”
The Office strives to keep moments as realistic as possible, but some of Krasinski’s own recent experiences have seemed downright surreal to him. He just finished shooting a movie called Leatherheads, co-starring and directed by George Clooney.
“People say do you pinch yourself everyday and first of all, I absolutely do, but when you work with George Clooney and he’s directing you, that never makes sense!” he says. “At no point of the day
Even though the press has been reporting that Clooney beat him in a game of basketball, Krasinski still has nothing but good things to say about his director.
“He was unlike any other director I’ve worked with because the movie is already in his head and he sees every single scene,” Krasinski says. “He has everything planned out perfectly so much so that he knows when you have the performance that you need before you do. So two or three takes later I’m just feeling warmed up and he’s like, ‘Good we got it’ and I’m like ‘Whoa! That wasn’t the plan.’ But you have to trust them and there’s no better person to trust than him.”
And plus, he adds, “I need a rematch, that’s the big thing!”