by Gill Pringle

The first Bad Moms movie gave parents permission to not strive for perfection. What was the greatest feedback you received?

I went to see it with all my girlfriends, and we rarely talk about the stresses of parenting in groups because I suppose it’s taboo to admit that parenting is stressful, but not only did they admit it, but they watched a funny version of what they go through on a big screen. When you’re sharing someone’s experience, it only brings people closer and helps people deal with anything they might be going through.

And in Bad Moms 2, all your mothers come to town, threatening to destroy Christmas for our three beleaguered moms?

I think by introducing our mothers you see why we are who we are. And I think your parents can push your buttons because they installed your buttons.

Reprising your role as Kiki in Bad Moms 2, we discover her mom, played by Cheryl Hines, is super-clingy. Has your own mom seen this movie yet?

She has trouble with swearing in movies so I don’t know if she will see it. It’s not just my movies – she doesn’t like swearing. To each their own – I love it!

Are you and Mila Kunis and Kathryn Hahn good friends in real life too?

Absolutely, and we feel very safe with each other and are willing to try anything on screen.

Bad Moms co-director Jon Lucas says that actresses are sometimes treated quite delicately?

I don’t know about that. I feel like you’re treated usually how you present yourself and Kathryn and Mila Kunis and I are all really loud, really opinionated and can be bulldozers. We are rarely bulldozed.

As the mother of daughters, and the voice of Anna in Frozen, is it your sense that the whole princess narrative is starting to shift for girls?

I think it’s broadening – which is about fucking time. I mean like, come on?! But it’s broadening and lines are being blurred in a great way. Nobody should have to fit into one box; that has been the problem with earth for the last hundred years, is that everybody is supposed to be in some box, and people are like ‘I don’t want to be in this box!’ and then we all start fighting. That’s actually what’s happening. I can be something and it doesn’t even need to concern you so why do you need to draw my box, do you know what I mean? We need to teach our kids it’s OK to live outside their box which is a theory of parenting I really believe in.

Do you schedule your work around your kids and family now?

Yeah. Well, I don’t dictate everything so sometimes I can and sometimes I can’t. I definitely will not take on a project that negatively affects my family – I will take on a project that frustrates my family a little bit…

How do you figure it out?

First, we sit with the calendar and see how long the kids are going to be out of town and let’s see who’s with them. It doesn’t always work perfectly, and I recently ended up stuck in Florida without the kids for 17 days because of Hurricane Irma which is the longest I’ve ever not seen them which was terrible. The most I’d gone before that was four days and that felt long. We do a lot of FaceTime and Marco Polo which is the video-texting app so we’re not beholden to a phone signal; it’s like sending video texts.

What comes first in your life?

Here’s what I say: I like being an actress. I love being Kristen. So that is going to be my first choice. Now there are definitely times in life where Dax [Shepard, husband] will say: ‘This is really going to creatively fulfill me. Can I do this?’ And it’s going to mean I’ve got to move to China for six months, so he can shoot something – but that’s what marriage is all about because there’s going to be something else I wanna do. I mean if I really want to do a Broadway show again, I’m going to be like: ‘can we move to New York for a couple of months’ and he’s probably going to say yes.

Do you and Dax have all your extended family come and stay for the holidays?

Yeah but we do it at different times because he has a big family and I have a big family so we rotate them but the one thing we do apply is that we don’t care about the date so we do Thanksgiving in the sand dunes every year where we go out and camp with a couple of other families and then the second week of December his mom will come and we’ll celebrate Christmas and then the third week of December, my mom will come and we’ll celebrate Christmas. We don’t do the gifts under the tree but we have a week with the family – and then my dad will come in the first week in January and we’ll celebrate Christmas. To me, the idea of the regimented day is so archaic – just see your family once a year!

Bad Moms 2 is in cinemas November 2, 2017


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