Emmy countdown: Amy Poehler


Amy Poehler career highlights

And Emmy makes three! Amy Poehler has yet another reason to celebrate this summer. In addition to her lead actress nomination for her portrayal of quirky government official Leslie Knope on NBC's "Parks and Recreation," she and her husband, Will Arnett, are expecting the arrival of their second child next month (their first son, Archie, turns 2 in October). Poehler talks with THR's Leslie Bruce about the nomination, her dream role and her plans to get post-baby red-carpet ready.

The Hollywood Reporter: Leslie Knope is such a unique role. Describe this character in your own words.

Amy Poehler: She is like a well-intentioned traveler with a really bad sense of direction. She's a person who believes that all it takes is one person to care to create change. She doesn't have that set of skills you need, like sly negotiation skills and the ability to withhold praise and love. She is like an open-face sandwich. You always know what you're going to get.

THR: Is there a scene from Season 2 that you think really impressed the TV Academy?

Poehler: That's way too hard for me to pick. But there was this one scene where I had just jumped off a bridge and I was on the top of a car shooting at these guys who thought I was a Russian spy. Oh wait, that was Angelina Jolie in "Salt." That wasn't me, but that scene looks good. I think that impressed the academy.
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THR: Three of the five lead actress nominees are "Saturday Night Live" alums. Is that a coincidence or indicative of the training ground "SNL" provides?

Poehler: It's no surprise to me. I think Lorne Michaels has done more for women in comedy than anybody I know. It has been such a fertile ground for talented women. It's an indication that, frankly, "SNL" is still the place where the funniest women reside.

THR: If you could step into the character of any of your fellow lead actress nominees, comedy or drama, who would it be and why?

Poehler: Mariska Hargitay from "Law & Order: SVU." First of all, I would just like to step into Mariska's body. She and (co-star Christopher) Meloni were shooting in New York the other day and I waddled past them, all pregnant, and they looked so badass. Mariska had a badass, well-tailored pantsuit on with a very visible gun. I want to wear a very tight pantsuit with a visible gun and lean over, and whisper in a perp's face, "You aren't allowed to hurt those little girls anymore." That's what I want to do. I really want to rough up a perp.

THR: How are you planning your red carpet look?

Poehler: Well, this year I am going to have a baby a couple weeks before. I do it every year. I get my hair and nails done, I get a facial, I have a baby and then I go to the Emmys. Tina Fey and I were just texting each other saying, "We've got to get dressed up! Kill me now!" Where some people are really into that, I hate it. Hopefully a wonderful team of professionals will shove me into a dress.