'New Girl' Writers on Recruiting Linda Cardellini as Jess' Wild Sister (Video)

The "Freaks and Geeks" and "Mad Men" actress comes to the Fox comedy on Feb. 11, making her first appearance in a prison holding tank.
"New Girl"

Another piece of the Day family puzzle falls into place on Tuesday's New Girl. The Feb. 11 episode, "Sister," features Linda Cardellini's first of several appearances as Jess' (Zooey Deschanel) not-quite-all-together big sister.

"We had just recently been talking about Jess' birthday episode, where Rob Reiner and Jamie Lee Curtis made an appearance again," says episode co-writer Matt Fusfeld in a behind-the-scenes video from "Sisters. "We thought we've got to do more Jess family stuff, and it sort of evolved from there."

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Curtis, who plays Jess' mom, is also in the episode -- phoning in to inform her that sister Abby is in jail.

"We were trying to figure out who the perfect sister would be, a lot of different names were being tossed around," adds Fusfield. "It had always kind of been a plan in our heads that Jess had an older sister. It seemed like the right time to introduce her to the loft and see how that would mix up things."

Casting Caredlini, it seems, also motivated the New Girl writers to paint her as something of a wild child. "As soon as we started imagining her as Linda Caredlini, it was like, 'Oh yeah this makes exact sense," says Alex Cuthbertson.

"Sisters" premieres Tuesday, Feb. 11, at 9 p.m. on Fox.