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Interview: Mara Marini talks about Brandi Maxxxx, women in comedy and Schitt’s Creek

We Spoke with Canadian actress Mara Marini about her character Brandi Maxxxx on Parks and Recreation, getting mistaken for an actual porn star, women in comedy, becoming an online dating guru and working with comedy legends Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara in Schitt’s Creek.

Mara Marini HipsDespite your numerous upcoming roles do you still feel that there are still a limited number of comedic roles for women and if yes, why do you think that is?

We were debating about that last night too because me and my friend had watched that documentary Women Aren’t Funny on Netflix. We were just talking about that whole situation and roles and the industry. The thing is to be honest I feel like when you compare it to guys it’s still so much less. I was able to see the breakdowns for a few years. I could see every day what was going out for men and what was going out for women and first of all, there are triple the roles for men regardless then out roles for women, when you cut out the nudity or the stupid bimbo girlfriend you’re not left with a ton of roles. So I do feel that we’re obviously getting so much better with an all-female cast for Ghostbusters coming up and Bridesmaids was amazing. It is getting better but it’s by no means on par with guys yet.

It’s definitely getting better for sure with amazing comedians like, Amy Poehler, Kirsten Wiig, Tina Fey but you know it’s still climbing that moment I think.

There is something very charming and sincere about the Brandi Maxxxx she reminds me of a young Dolly Parton in a way.

Even in the audition I never wanted it to be too “Porny”. I know how clever the writers are and I think they really went with it. Brandi Maxxxx is a smart woman, she’s a business woman this is her job. She’s lovely. You know she wants to be like Leslie, she loves Leslie. She has this charm and an innocence about her.

You appear in two upcoming episodes (Feb 10th and 17th) of the Parks and Rec final season, what can we expect to see from Brandi Maxxxx? (Feb 10th and 17th)

They did exactly what I wanted them to do with the character I’m so happy. I can’t say anything but it’s great. The writing team is just so phenomenal on that show.

Your Twitter Description says “I’m not a Porn Star I just play one on TV”. I’m just curious if this is a problem that you have with people getting confused? Do you have any funny stories about this?

Yup, one hundred percent. It’s never really in LA it’s kind of usually just outside in smaller cities. I’ll also get a lot of comments on Vine or Twitter like, “If you’re a real porn star send me a nude”.

Your show for Playboy.com “It’s a Match with Mara Marini” is both pragmatic and humorous. How did your association with Playboy.com and Playboy Radio come about?

Previously I worked with Break.com and I did a similar show with them last year, just a tongue-in-cheek dating, kind of what not to do for guys. Then the head of Playboy Media reached out to me and said we loved you in that and we’re relaunching our website – this was back in the summer – to be more of what Hef originally wanted which was a humour section and style and all this different stuff.

The advice that you give on the show is this based upon your dating experience?

My next web series that it looks like we’re going to do with Playboy, it’s called, Mara’s Men and the first season is 13 of the worst dates I’ve ever been on. And they’re so good it seems like I’m making it up but they are one hundred percent true. My writing partner Ricky Mabe grew up with Seth Rogen and that whole crew so we’re hoping to get some really fun cameos to re-enact them.

What is the number one worst thing that a guy can do on a date?

I’ve had guys pull out their phone and say “I only date models” and literally show me their Exs on their phone.

You will appear in an upcoming episode of Schitt’s Creek (Episode 8 Allez Vous airing Feb 24th). Can you tell us a bit about your role?

It is such a funny show first of all. I know Dan Levy quite well and he and his dad are such a hoot.

I play a character that grew up with Catherine O’Hara. I’m supposed to be her age and you know she’s a little older then I am but the character has had a lot of “Work” done. So the makeup team on the show did a great job. My character has this beauty line called Allez Vous. It’s sort of a pyramid scheme kind of idea and Catherine O’Hara’s character has the idea that she’s going to sell it too. It’s very fun, it’s very silly, I’m excited to see how it looks on TV because it was a lot of makeup.