It’s hard to escape Olivia Munn these days. Yes, she’s still going strong in her usual niches. She’s in her fourth year as host of G4’s Attack of the Show, all over the pages of Maxim, and is a frequent object of affection on websites that like writing about pretty girls. But the 29-year-old Oklahoma native is branching out. She’s got a cameo in an independent film called Iron Man 2, is on the verge of releasing her first book (Suck It, Wonder Woman!: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek), and just wrapped a pedigreed pilot for NBC called Perfect Couples (we’re crossing our fingers for her). Oh, and if you happen to be driving by Wilshire and Highland in Hollywood, that’d be her, naked on a giant Peta billboard, trying to save the elephants from those circus bastards. What have you done lately?
It’s been a big couple days for you. First the Iron Man 2 premiere, and then the Peta billboard. Yeah, the billboard thing was pretty awesome, and for Iron Man I was really excited that people can see that a cameo means it’s and it doesn’t mean that I’m Iron Man. I’m like, “Okay great, can people stop asking me questions now?” I just finished my pilot for NBC, Perfect Couples. That was the best week of my entire life, which might sound really sad when you realize that you’re 29 and that might be your best week ever, but it was. Or it could be really exciting because it means my life is getting better. Maybe. So you are an author, a spokeswoman, actress, host, activist, model, and sex symbol. Am I missing anything? Avid hover board dreamer. I think about it every day of my life. Would you not want it? Who would say no to all that air space above us? I would get so much done, I could add three more titles to my name.
Why don’t you add inventor and make one? Look. God did not bless me with the gift of mathematics and science. He gave me the dream to pass onto an actual inventor. I can give him my passion, that’s all I got.
Did you like Iron Man 2? Um, yeah. I saw it in a really intimate theatre. When Mickey Rourke fucking comes out at the race track—you see it in the previews but you don’t really see what he does—I literally was the first person looking around at people like, “Oh my god, is everyone else freaking out right now?”
Does Mickey Rourke’s character get a different costume at the end of the film, or is that a spoiler? I don’t think I’m allowed to say. I think it sounds like I’m giving away something. He turns into a butterfly and flies away into a rainbow. Spoiler! He turns into a My Little Pony at the end.
So why are you sticking up for elephants? Elephants are good luck in the Chinese community, and I’m half-Chinese. And I love animals. My mom came to visit me and she brought all these tiny elephants to line up in my kitchen as good luck. I had seen this PETA video that the Ringling Bros. are shocking and chaining up their elephants. When you see them dancing on tiny balls, it’s not because they’re so talented. It’s because people shocked them and beat them into thinking, if I don’t dance on this ball, I get shocked. By the way, how archaic is the circus? Who fucking goes to the circus? What is it, 1920?
I read a blogger’s response to your ad who said that elephants actually have it much harder in the wild, because they’ve got to deals with lions and stuff. They based this on Planet Earth. You know what I’d like to say to those people? Maybe you should get off your computer that mom bought for you, and your iPhone that your dad bought for you, because let’s face it, your parents are probably split up and they need to buy your love. So you’re sitting there watching Planet Earth to look smart when girls come over, and when girls come over I mean once a year when your sister brings her friend over. And you sit there, and you’re watching, and you think it’s better to take something from its natural habitat and make it dance on a fucking ball? The only time humans should get involved is when they are endangered and then there are zoos that are specifically there to help those species.
It was on Best Week Ever. Oh, it was on Best Week Ever? That’s dope! Hey guys, what’s up? Fuck you. You know what’s great about Best Week Ever? They never talk about themselves. What are you doing with your life?
Didn’t you recently cut yourself off from the web and news? Oh, yeah. I’m also really busy so I’m not getting news like I’m supposed to. I read my Twitter comments sometimes, but en my friends will tell me I don’t check my Twitter. But the thing is, with my last relationship [with Star Trek star Chris Pine] there was so much tension on me, and all that attention was new to me, and I suffer from anxiety already, so I just went offline. It was really hard for me because I do a blog, and all that stuff. But I didn’t know what was happening in Haiti for three days, and I was like, What’s going on with that Volcano?
You mentioned you were busy. What’s your average day like? I get up in the morning—I sleep like 3 or 4 hours a night, I’m doing construction on my house so I’m dealing with all that, then I’m shooting whatever I’m shooting, and taking meetings, and doing everything on my Blackberry and my netbook. And then I have more meetings and dinners, and then I come home and I’m working on the house and cleaning. My book is coming out so I’ve been doing the final edits on that, and then I have photo shoots and so I just haven’t had time to hang online. That’s partly why I’m single right now. I put more time into racing around and dreaming about hover boards. But being offline makes me feel better, I actually like not knowing things. That stream of consciousness kind of goes through your head. You’re trying to watch CNN and the next thing you hear is about show business. I didn’t know what happened with Sandra Bullock for the longest time! One, I love her to death and two, I shouldn’t know what’s going on with her life. I feel like a better person, I feel like I have more space in my mind for hover board dreaming then for what Sandra is doing. But now I’m having my TVs installed tomorrow, so I’m pretty screwed.
It’s all downhill from there. I know! What am I going to do? I kind of like not watching anything. I think I’m going to put on Planet Earth and pretend I’m getting educated, and then later I’ll be at the beach and I’ll say, “What’s interesting about the coral development in this area is… did you know that?” So people think I’m smart but in reality I just watched a movie.
Can you tell me about Perfect Couples? Have you seen Mad Men? It’s nothing like that. Are you a fan of Lost? It’s nothing like that. Have you seen Intervention? It’s exactly like that.
Sounds incredible. It’s seriously the writer/producer of 30 RockJon Pollack and Scott Silveri, the executive producer of Friends, and the best part is all of us aren’t super recognizable people so you can really get into our characters. It’s about three different couples, and we’re all completely different, and it’s called Perfect Couples but really none of us are. There’s the couple that fights and screams and has sex a lot, then the one that thinks they’re the cool ones, and then there’s my couple which is the seemingly perfect couple but we’re what’s wrong with America. Why are we in debt? Because of this couple. Usually when you’re doing a pilot, you’re always talking about if it is going to get picked up, but we actually haven’t discussed it at all, because what we’re doing we love so much that it doesn’t really matter. We want it to get picked up of course, but if it doesn’t get picked up, there’s nothing we would have done differently. I’ve never done this before, but since February I’ve cried out of happiness twice. And the second time was because of this show.
What was the first time? The first time was when I got all the offers from the networks for shows, and I was in a position where I had to—Wait, how many shows are offering? And I’m in the position where I have to pick one? I remember, literally, like hoping I’d get Dress for Less Commercial. I remember thinking when I first started that I hope I never stop being excited.
I’ve been seeing you on video online promoting Axe. Tell me about that? We partnered together to prove that guys aren’t alert in the morning so Axe shower, Rise, they have this new shower gel that helps guys wake up in the morning. Axe really does have those great smells. Whenever a guy is wearing Axe I’m like, That smells so good. So now you have a body wash that helps you get up in the morning. So we basically ran through the streets of San Francisco—this is where I sound like a whore—and I went on a corner and hit on guys. And I was very dressed down in my Clark Kent-style pony tail and baggy clothes. You should watch the video. By the way, I was at the Roosevelt last night for, Robert’s after party, and I saw some copies of BlackBook there.
Robert? Robert Downey.
Oh, you’re on a first name basis with him. Sorry no, R-Dog. I’m on a nickname basis with him. It’s R-Dog or R-Dizzle, whatever.