Chris Pratt on 'Parks and Recreation' return and why Andy will have so much jet lag
"Parks and Recreation" has been without Chris Pratt since its premiere gave him an excuse to be absent while he filmed "Guardians of the Galaxy" in London, but Andy Dwyer will soon be making his long-anticipated return to Pawnee. Just expect art to imitate life for a bit longer in terms of his character's storyline on the show.
Zap2it recently caught up with Pratt while he was promoting his new movie "Delivery Man," and he shared a big tease of what Andy's return to Pawnee will look like. Spoiler alert: it won't be very action-packed.
"He's been dealing with a little jet lag, which is pretty funny," Pratt says. "I came back on a Tuesday at midnight and went back to work at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, so I was like zero rest, and [the writers] knew that, and they said, 'What's the easiest thing we can do for Chris?' and they're like, 'I know! Because Andy has been in London working just like Chris was in London working,' they said, 'Maybe we just give him serious jet lag so he can like lay his head on the desk and sleep.' And so the first episode coming back is just Andy having to deal with a whole bunch of jet lag and being tired."
It won't take long for Andy to get back to his old antics. Pratt teases another Season 6 storyline that involves Adam Scott's Ben Wyatt trying to pull a prank on the office.
"We pull a prank on him, and then he wants to get the office back with this prank, but he just has a minor meltdown and anxiety attack trying to even pull a prank," Pratt says. "And he trying to hide the fact that he's about to prank us -- because I set him up with this prank and everyone knows he's about to prank us -- it is so funny. God, he cracked me up so hard just the other day I could not stop laughing. It's so fun to be back on 'Parks and Rec.' I just love it."
Considering NBC has shifted around its schedule, it's unclear when exactly viewers will get to see the rest of "Parks and Recreation's" upcoming Season 6 episodes. Pratt says he didn't know beforehand that the hiatus was coming, but neither he nor the rest of the cast is concerned about the change.
"I think they're trying to shake the night up. I mean, we need more viewers and NBC is, God bless them and thank them for keeping us on the air for as long as they have because we don't have classic ratings the way [other shows have]," he says. "I have a feeling the majority of the people -- or at least a good chunk of the people who actually watch our show that are not represented in the Nielsen ratings -- they watch it online. They watch it on Hulu or they watch it on Netflix or they get it on DVD or they get it on iTunes and they watch it like that and then it's not represented in the Nielsen ratings."
But Pratt acknowledges the charm of "Parks and Rec" that keeps fans coming back week after week and loving the residents of Pawnee more and more each season.
"The writers are good at allowing the show to evolve in a way that best shows our cast and, also, that once you get to know the characters you can get comedy out of character work rather than a story idea," he says. "It's not like some standalone story that's super funny. It's just Ron Swanson saying something funny because you know who he is, or April saying something because you know who she is. That's pretty cool."
Pratt is happy to be back on "Parks and Recreation," but he also has some massive film projects coming out. In addition to his supporting role in "Delivery Man," Pratt is the leading man in both "Guardians of the Galaxy" and the animated flick "The LEGO Movie." So which of those two character -- "Guardians'" Star-Lord or LEGO hero Emmet -- would Andy Dwyer be more excited to find out is his alter ego?
"Oh my God, Andy probably LEGOs," Pratt says with a big laugh. "I feel like comic books are a little too advanced for Andy. He hasn't graduated to comic books yet. He's still on LEGOs. He's putting pieces together in LEGOs. One day he'll read a comic book. He's probably looked at the pictures."