Melissa McCarthy on her characters’ foul language: ‘I don’t speak like that at all’


Melissa McCarthy is promoting her film The Boss, which opens this Friday. Melissa plays Michelle Darnell, an uber-successful businesswoman who is sent to jail for insider trading. Upon her release, Michelle’s plan to regain her footing in the business world is to form a troop to take on the Dandelions (a Girl Scout like organization) called the Darnell Darlings. The two troops battle over brownie sales.

On the Today Show, Melissa told Matt Lauer that the Michelle character was invented sixteen years ago when Melissa was in the Groundlings comedy troupe. To promote the film – this is genius – the studio’s marketing packaged Darnell Darlings’ brownies as part of the press kits sent to the media. However, as Matt says, he cannot read one word from the packaging on morning TV, due to Michelle’s penchant for colorful language in everything she does. Melissa says that unlike her potty-mouthed character, the Falcone-McCarthy household keeps it quite G-Rated.

Melissa McCarthy is nothing like her kooky, onscreen characters in movies like Tammy and the upcoming comedy The Boss – and that’s partly why she enjoys playing them.

The actress told Today’s Matt Lauer on Monday that her onscreen persona in The Boss, Michelle Darnell, favors foul language much more than she does.

“I have two little girls, so we don’t say ‘shut up,’ ” McCarthy explained. “We can’t say anything at home, and I don’t speak like that at all.”

Instead, she finds channeling Darnell’s potty mouth to be a work perk: “Part of the fun of acting is you get to play these characters that kick in doors, say insane things, swear like a sailor – it is the opposite of me.”

[From People]

In addition, Melissa was on Howard Stern where she confirmed that she would not be returning to the Gilmore Girls, which we knew, but that there were no hard feelings. She also told a great story about how her good friend Brian Atwood, the now famous shoe designer, told her to come live with him when she moved to New York. What Brian did not tell Melissa until she got there was that he was, in fact, sleeping on someone else’s couch at the time. I imagine today they both giggle about that story as they count their cash.

Melissa capped the promo day by stopping by The Tonight Show for one of Fallon’s lip sync battles. I adore Melissa, as you know, but sweet Jesus – my Pomeranian can lip sync better than her. However, Melissa can work the moves like nobody’s business so she holds her own. Fallon opened with Melanie’s Brand New Key, and Melissa started with a censored version of DMX’s X Gonna Give It To Ya. Next Fallon performed Zayn Malik’s Pillow Talk. These were all cute but meh overall. However, Melissa closed with Colors of the Wind from the Pocahontas soundtrack and it is more glorious than a unicorn sighting. It starts around 5:50 if you are strapped for time. She started with a few paper leaves and just goes bigger. She sang through crepe algae and feathers buildup, flying otters and getting pummeled by a wolf. But that confetti bomb finale? Don’t tell me Missy doesn’t get this song.



Photo credit: WENN Photos and Getty Images

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35 Responses to “Melissa McCarthy on her characters’ foul language: ‘I don’t speak like that at all’”

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  1. minx says:

    She’s so pretty, those dimples!

  2. Snazzy says:

    I know she didn’t mean it that way – but what’s wrong with being someone who is kicking in doors (metaphorically of course), saying insane things and swearing like sailor? That’s how I am in my everyday life and I’m proud of it

    Edit: by “that way” I mean that women shouldn’t swear like sailors or whatever because it’s not feminine or acceptable etc. Which for is, as far as I’m concerned, a load of crap 😛

    • Esmom says:

      She sounds like she’s trying to set a “proper” example for her daughters. I don’t think someone is compromising their authenticity by dialing it back in front of kids. Some people will disagree.

      • Snazzy says:

        Fair enough. I kind of took it as a “that a ‘proper / good’ person is not one who swears” as subtext. But then again I could be completely off and mis reading this as I’m grumpy because I just got into a brawl with my boss so I may be taking it out on this article 😛

    • LizLemonGotMarried says:

      I kind of did a double take, but I hope it was simply meant that her home life is dominated by her children and therefore, she keeps it clean and polite. I tone it down at home, but I swear like a sailor in my office (not in large meetings or in front of subordinates, but with my direct reports and boss, I let fly). I work in a male-dominated field, and a extremely male-dominated channel within that field, and I’ll be honest, if I blanched every time someone dropped an F or a GD, or if I refused to kick in doors and kick asses, I would have had to leave this boys’ club years ago. Not saying that you HAVE to be foul-mouthed or that only men swear in a professional setting, but that it definitely is part of the culture in my world, and it can be a bonding experience to let fly with the filthiest conversations imaginable. “Ladylike” in its traditional context is worthless in my world. *cue pearl clutching*

    • Cupcake says:

      Her kids are still quite young too. It’s not cute when you get a call from a teacher because your 6-year old keeps saying F$%# When you get used to toning it down at home, sometimes you just notice that you swear less overall.

    • Hadleyb says:

      I rarely swear. I just don’t like it. When I get angry sure here and there but not in every day conversation.

      I think in certain situations and your profession it can make you sound unprofessional and just trashy at times. I cringe when I hear people swearing up and down for no reason in public.

      And I wouldn’t want anyone to swear at me, I don’t care who they are. Its nothing to do with feminism — I don’t care for it coming from men or women. But thats me and its ok.

  3. lucy2 says:

    I think I’m getting why she often does these insane characters. Her home life sounds normal and calm, and the roles are her chance to cut loose.
    She and her husband are cute together, and her Pocahontas song was great.

  4. Jenns says:

    This movie sounds like Troop Beverly Hills 2.

    And I really like Melissa, but I wish she would have better movie choices. She was so great in Spy and Bridesmaid, but this movie looks like a dud.

    • AngelaH says:

      Troop Beverly Hills is one of my favorite movies. Seriously. I love the crap out of that movie. I’m trying to teach my niece (a Girl Scout) the “Cookie Time” song from that movie. I told her that it would help her troop get more sales at their cookie booth. She didn’t buy it, but I won’t give up!

      So while you think it looks like a dud, I’m praying it brings me the joy that Troop Beverly Hills does!

  5. mkyarwood says:

    I’m in love, really. Including Miranda Hart *(Chummy!!!!)* in Spy was brilliant, and I loved the interaction shown between every female character in that flick. I love that the guys were background noise.

    She is ALMOST the modern version of Peter Sellers for me. I know his characters were a little more subtle, but that was a sign of the times.

    I swear a lot.

    • INeedANap says:

      Spy is seriously one of my favorite movies. Hilarious, script-flipping, and just an all-around good spy caper. It seemed like everyone on set had a great time filming.

      • hil says:

        I just don’t understand the love for “Spy” in here (and elsewhere)! It was horrible!! So unfunny and stupid. Sorry, just me, I guess.

  6. Nancy says:

    I swear like a sailor but am trying….last week some ladies didn’t like Melissa in Bridesmaids because she was too vulgar. That was her role. She was hysterical to me, laugh out loud funny. With that said, she was the strongest women in the cast. She cussed, did inappropriate things in the bathroom lol….but was the one who got through to Kristin’s character by clueing her in to what it was like to be the fat girl in school and how it made her the HBIC. I think she is amazing and clearly has a family who adores her.

  7. Erinn says:

    I can swear with the best of them – it’s gotten worse the longer I’ve been in the job I’m in. We use messenger a lot and it’s easy to get away with cursing when your bosses do the same. It’s rarely out of anger, but as more of exclamation.

    That being said – I can turn it off when I need to. I’m not cursing like that in front of my parents or in-laws or niece, or in a normal public situation. But with friends, or my coworkers who consist of 90% men who curse just as much, I don’t use the filter.

  8. Lucky says:

    My whole family swears like sailors and that kind of language was never censored in our house and I grow up not seeing it as something dirty but a part of my daily vernacular.
    That being said when my brother had his first daughter we were pretty loose with the cursing so the toddler picked it all up.
    Once she said to me “Auntie,suck my dick!” in a singsong voice and it was one of the funniest and most terriyfing things I’ve ever heard so then we decided to dial it back a bit so that people wouldn’t think we were raising drunken sailors.

  9. Felice. says:

    Aw I like that Star Wars picture.

  10. Amanda says:

    Oh No! I just finished binge watching Gilmore Girls in preparation of the new episodes. I annoyed everyone around me talking about how much I loved Sookie and couldn’t wait to see Melissa back in her role. I just assumed she’d be back. So sad.

  11. HappyMom says:

    Since my 1st grader got written up for saying “Oh, sh–” when he couldn’t get something to work on his computer at school, I’ve really had to tone it down.

  12. Nancypants says:

    My husband and I are both retired military First Sergeants.
    Lord, we can cuss but it’s not proper or professional, so, we avoid it, especially around our youngest child and the grand kids and our parents.
    Just thought I’d throw that out there.

  13. Michelle says:

    I love Melissa! Her show is great and I hate that it is ending and I like her movies. I am a 2 year old Sunday School teacher as well as a secretary and most of my colleagues don’t have a clue that I will cuss a blue streak in a hot minute. I was brought up with it and it is just a form of expression with me. I will only air it out in my home or around certain friends. Or unless I am driving and someone is in my way….then it’s on!

  14. Apsutter says:

    She looks freaking fantastic! And healthy!!! I love the way she was dancing and all in during the DMX portion…I’m betting that she feels great and she looks very ‘in’ her body if ya know what I mean. Colors of the Wind was so good…brought back major memories of one of my besties

  15. cakecakecake says:

    I really like Melissa, she does not take herself too seriously. I think she is a very pretty woman and funny as heck to me. luv her. I support all of her movies.

    she just seems grounded and not full of herself.

  16. Lisa says:

    She was so different from what I expected on Michael and Kelly this morning! I’d never seen her interviewed before. I like it when celebrities don’t force themselves to be “on” all the time. I thought she might be like that, but she wasn’t.

  17. Dhavynia says:

    I curse all the time and it gets worse not better. I do know how to behave and not make an ass of myself for the most part. I can say I curse more than my male coworkers, my significant other and my sister who are both cops. Sometimes my sister tells me I curse too much and I kind of tone it down….
    I think Melissa it’s so funny and I truly believe her and her husband are very down to earth. I love the fact that he’s almost in every movie with her even if it’s a small scene, they’re both great. The last scene of both in Bridesmaids was awesome

  18. sequinedheart says:

    I love Melissa McCarthy. She is so dang talented & beautiful & when I hear her talk about her family, she seems like she is a truly happy/contented Hollywood starlet (not easy for most!).
    I have a daughter, she is 1yr old & even now I am trying to dial back my potty mouth. I swear like a sailor – always have & its nothing to do with my upbringing. My parents didn’t put up with that rubbish but it feels natural to me & I have to watch myself around in-laws etc! I can be feminine & be a bad ass without trying to impress. I really respect her trying to raise lovely young women – I’m trying to set a similar example… but you should see me once I’ve dropped my kid off to daycare, it’s like I have tourettes!

  19. Lucy says:

    I love that she plays such bad mouthed characters, her not being like that at all.

  20. Kate says:

    You can kind of tell she doesn’t swear much in real life. In her latest films when she goes on those sweaty rants, it’s always a bit off. There’s not that natural flow, it’s like it’s a bit of an effort to say each word.

    Y’know how in PG-13 movies you get one big swearword, and it often comes off really unnaturally. Or in a show like Suits where they keep saying sh#% and it feels weird, like they’ve got a quota to reach. That’s what Spy and the trailer for this new film felt like to me.