Two and a Half Men Season 11 Interview: Amber Tamblyn On Joining the Show, The Talk With Ashton Kutcher & More

Two and a Half Men has gone through quite a changes these past few years to say the least, and one of its latest addition, Amber Tamblyn who portrays Jenny, Charlie’s daughter. Jenny is quite the wild child and Tamblyn is having lots of fun portraying her, while also adapting to performing on a sitcom, something she had never done before.

During the Warner Bros Mondo press tour, Tamblyn took some time to answer a few questions about her joining the show and her character Jenny.

On what made her want to join such an established show

Tamblyn explained that the material was really the reason she decided to sign up and join Two and a Half Men. She shared, “When they sent it to me and I read it, I was really quite floored for a show that, to me, had been purported to be about stereotypes of women, and there were not really any very strong female characters that might have been on the show. This is not true, this is just what I purported to be true. I knew nothing really about it. And it was great to read something with a female gay character who was not the brunt of jokes, but who was the one eliciting the jokes and was the one that was making everybody else the brunt of jokes. And to me, that was ‑‑ I’ll just say the word ‑‑ revolutionary in a kind of way for a sitcom of this nature. To me, that was very different and very intriguing.”

On whether she was nervous about the fan’s reaction to her character

Turns out Tamblyn wasn’t nervous. She did however feel excitement for her friends to see what her character was all about, because some of them didn’t understand why she decided to do the show. She explained, “I felt like I had this secret because I was shooting it, and no one had seen it yet. And I felt like, “Just wait. Just wait and see it. I think you’re going to be excited.””

On how much she likes the idea of portraying a female version of Charlie in the show

“I love it,” Tamblyn shared, she continued to explain that for it’s very exciting for probably any actress to play a “moral-less character.” She described her character Jenny as “somebody who has not figured that out yet and will sleep with anybody, drink anything, snort whatever you put in front of her. And she’ll be happy.” As such, it’s lots of fun for her to play that.

On what Ashton Kutcher told her during her first week of shooting

Tamblyn explained how her first week was pretty tough on her as the writers, director and herself were trying to figure out the character. It was imperative for them to get it right the first time. On one particular rough day, Ashton Kutcher took her aside and her said, “Hey, I want you to know that when I first did this show, I thought I was going to get fired. The notes they’re giving you, don’t take them personally. Do not, because they’re just doing their job. They want the best joke to survive. They want you to succeed. And that’s all they’re doing. And sometimes it comes out in a tough way.” He continued, “I, as your co-star, give you permission to do what you were hired to do, to remember that underlying everything and to, at the end of the day, just slough it all off and do what you were hired to do.”

This little pep talk from her co-star changed everything about Tamblyn’s confidence when we finally shot her first taping.

On how the transition into doing a sitcom from drama and film

“Sitcoms terrify me,” Tamblyn shared, “They are something I know nothing about. I’d never done one before, had never seen one taped, knew nothing about them. I think the only thing I’d ever seen was “I Love Lucy” when I was a kid.”

She explained that it was hard to transition from a world where your script is “the bible” to a sitcom where scripts are constantly changing on the spot. But while she found it difficult, she also found it “really invigorating and exciting.” She shared, “what’s the point of doing anything if you’re not pushed every day to be completely terrified? There’s a great Henry Miller quote, “All growth is a leap in the dark.” And that’s what I feel like doing my job is like sometimes.”

Two and a Half Men airs on Thursdays at 9:30pm on CBS.