Jake Johnson has opened up about Prince’s cameo in New Girl, revealing that the musician reached out to play a part in the show just so could be apart of the universe.
So much so, that when he first met Johnson he referred to him by his character name of Nick, and only want to “think of Zoey as Jess.”
When I asked Johnson what it was like to work with the iconic singer, who died at the age of 57 in April, 2016, the actor responded, “It was so weird. It really was.”
“He was so shockingly nice, normal, and, you know, it is Prince, so every member of our crew and cast, everybody was fanning out of him.”
“But he really loved the show. When I first met him, he wanted to refer to me as Nick. He liked to think of Zoey as Jess.”
“His reason for doing the show was that he was a Nick and Jess fan. He wanted us to be more in love after his episode. He was just the kind of guy that wanted to live in a fictional world and influence the characters.”
“Which is really a unique thing for a human to want to do. But it is fun. Like, if I could go back and be on ‘Cheers.’”
“I’d want to go back and sit between Norm and Cliff. I would want to go in the office with Sam and Diane and get a drink from Carla.”
“Prince just lived his ‘New Girl’ fantasy. For me, it was an out of body experience, because I couldn’t be as big a fan of somebody as a performer.”
Since “New Girl” came to an end earlier this year in May after seven seasons, I also decided to ask Johnson what his favorite memories of working on the show are.
“There’s so many. My favorite was just laughing with the cast. Laughing in between takes. Improvising and making each other laugh. Genuinely having fun.”
“We got so close together. We worked with each other for so long and did so much press together. It was such a lucky, blessed job. It is so nice to do something where everybody gets along and there’s an audience.”