Could the girl next door have a big secret? Community star Gillian Jacobs stars in the short film It’s Not You, It’s Me, which hit the web today on JASH, the YouTube channel founded by comedians Sarah Silverman, Reggie Watts, Tim Heidecker and Eric Warheim, and Michael Cera. The film, written and directed by Matt Spicer, follows Jacobs’ character, a woman whose relationship is literally driving her crazy, through some pretty dark escapades. Childrens Hospital star Rob Huebel co-stars. Watch the film, which debuted at South by Southwest in March, below, and then read on for more with Jacobs:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Wow, this is dark!
GILLIAN JACOBS: I read the script and I thought it was an interesting thing for me to do. I hadn’t done anything serious or dark like that in a while. For me it was kind of nice to go back to something that’s a little bit darker than what I’ve been doing lately.
We don’t get to know much about your character. Did you create a backstory for her?
I didn’t even create a name for her! We talked a lot about how you reach that point in a relationship where you guys have been together for long enough that little tiny things about your partner start to drive you insane. We talked about [that] down to sounds they make while eating that make you want to put a fork through their face or stab them with a coffee table.
We do know your character has a kind of odd job — she’s a welder. Did you have to learn to weld?
Thankfully they managed to fit my shirt on an actual welder for some of the shots because I don’t know anything about welding and it’s very intimidating to me. But it was fun to goof around with the helmet, I think that maybe added some unintentional comedy to the scenes — me in the helmet, trying to flip it up and down. I’m so short that I think everything ends up looking kind of comical on me, whether it’s the gloves or the helmet or even just holding the welding gun. Maybe that part wasn’t supposed to be funny, but it is to me at least.
What I really like about JASH as a YouTube channel is that it has pieces on it that are funny and dark and strange. Jenny Slate made this really great series called Catherine for them that is like kind of unnerving and also funny and also suspenseful, and so they seem to be honing in on that mixture of comedy and tragedy and horror and suspense that I think is interesting. I think we’ve found a good home for the short.
What kinds of freedoms does making content exclusively for the web allow?
I totally think that the web is the place where if you have an idea that is maybe a bit different you can go and just make it. Matt [Spicer] raised the money for this short on Kickstarter and had an idea and made it. Thankfully the fine people at JASH liked it and distributed it so he didn’t have to go through the process of OK’ing the script with anyone or developing it with anyone, which can sometimes water down an idea. So when you’re sort of able to make something and then find distribution for it you’re able to do your idea in its purest form.
Who are some of your favorite comedians working with JASH right now?
I am a huge Tim & Eric fan. I adore that show. I’m also a fan of Reggie Watts and Sarah Silverman and Michael Cera, so if they want to make things with me I would be honored because that’s the stuff that really makes me laugh, like Tim’s cooking show on JASH.
You and Rob Huebel seem like such a natural fit. Had you worked together before?
It’s funny, because I’ve worked with so many other guys from Childrens Hospital — I did a movie with Ken Marino (Milo), and I’ve worked with Rob Corddry, but we’d never worked together before. I feel like I’m doing a Childrens Hospital complete set, making my way.
Will there be a part two?
I wonder! There’s more people in the world to kill, so … You never know.