Emmys: Olivia Munn Discusses 'Newsroom' Growth and 'New Girl' Guesting (Video)

2:13 PM PST 06/21/2013 by Michael O'Connell

With big comedic and dramatic turns in the last year, the actress and former journalist tells THR about her evolving relationship with the news and being gently coerced into picking an inspiration for her 'Newsroom' character.

Olivia Munn didn't have any particular journalist in mind when she took on the role of economist and ACN anchor Sloan Sabbith in Aaron Sorkin's The Newsroom. She had the benefit of ample character description from the creator and her own background in broadcast journalism. But the more people asked, the more she felt compelled to find an answer.

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"When the show first came out, a lot of people were wondering about Sloan and who she was based on," Munn said when she recently spoke with The Hollywood Reporter in the THR Cover Lounge. "I know she wasn't based on anybody, and I didn't base her on anybody. But as I started getting asked that more and more, I started thinking, 'Well, the question really isn't who is it based on, it's who inspired me as a journalist and why did I want to go into journalism.'"

The answer, which Munn has previously mentioned, is Diane Sawyer -- but aside from aesthetics like an aversion to jewelry and an affinity for clean-cut suits, that's about all the similarity she's found.

Munn, who currently appears in the THR cover story alongside her Newsroom colleagues, says that the second season of the HBO series will continue to find Sloan more and more inquisitive about news outside of her area of expertise.
 
"The biggest thing that I've seen with Sloan this year is that she is getting more involved in news stories," says Munn. "What I love about Sloane so much, and what we got to see in season one, is [that] she's got this great drive to tell stories that really matter."

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Munn's tight shooting schedule for the second season of The Newsroom did accommodate some moonlighting. She had a three-episode stint on the recent season of Fox's New Girl playing the stripper love interest to Jake Johnson's character. She says she's happy to go back -- but not in any romantic capacity.

"It was so fun playing his love interest and he's such a great guy, but I'm such a fan of New Girl, I was thinking 'Don't you really want to be with Jess [Zooey Deschanel]?'" says Munn. They're just so sweet together... I would love to go back whenever I can. I feel like we all bonded so quickly, but I have a feeling every guest says that about the show. They're just so warm."

The Newsroom returns to HBO on July 14 -- and keep your eyes peeled for another video with Olivia Munn on THR next week.

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