Comedienne Loni Love has been giving audiences the real laughs, commentary and sisterhood as a co-host on the hit talk show The Real.
With the show in its second season, one thing Love has successfully been able to do is connect with women across the country. Of those women include mothers, and just in time for Mother’s Day, Loni’s latest film project is a dedication to them.
Mother’s Day is the latest comedy by director Gary Marshall that tells the tale of a group of moms, each with individual stories that women of all backgrounds can relate to. Featuring an ensemble cast that includes Jennifer Aniston, Julia Roberts, Kate Hudson, Shay Mitchell and Loni herself, the stories of these women intertwine to create a comedic and touching tale of modern motherhood.
We caught up with Loni to learn more about her character and the importance of motherhood and laughter.
Your character Kimberley is known for being the life of the party. Would you say you and your character are similar personality wise?
I think the reason I got the role was because of the way I played her. She brings the comedic relief to the film, and I think in real life I bring the comedic relief to real situations. I’ve always been the type of woman who wants to help other women, and so does my character. It was a very fulfilling role for me.
Why do you think people respond to comedy or comedic relief in a positive way?
It makes us look at something differently. Sometimes it can make a conflict or something that’s controversial look stupid or not that serious; it’s a great escape really. That’s why I became a comedian in the first place. When I see people in the audience smiling and happy, it’s a great feeling. I don’t think people realize, but when someone is smiling and looking happy it’s a much more beautiful thing than when they’re just sitting there. I love bringing that look to someone’s face.
What was it like working with director Gary Marshall?
He’s a master of comedy. It can be intimidating working with someone of his stature, but he makes you feel at home when you’re on the set. He really created a sense of family while we were there. There were no fights or any tension, it was just a great time. On some sets, you put the hours in and you’re ready to go home, but on this film we’d be on set for 12 or so hours and it wasn’t dreadful at all because it was such a loving environment. I think that’s a testament to his style and his character as a person.
What are some key take-aways you think people will find in the film?
When you have as many stories as this film does, there’s a funny moment in each person’s story. Be it Sandy’s (played by Jennifer Aniston) meltdown in the parking lot to the scene with Bradley pleading with his daughters, each person has an important takeaway from their story. Though of course, the best scene to me is the one with me pole dancing. It wasn’t written in the script. Gary Marshall came to me a week into shooting and said he wanted to put it in the movie after seeing me on the Ellen show doing a pole dancing class. I really think what inspired it was him being down in Atlanta. One thing I want the audience to look out for is a scene with Julia Roberts; one of the lines is a reference from Pretty Woman. I thought that was a nice touch.
Why do you think mothers are largely underrepresented in film?
A lot of times who produces the film plays a part in how a story involving mothers plays out. Though I think a lot of it is that as a society we often take mothers for granted. Those characters don’t get depth because in real life we don’t really see motherhood as something that’s multi-faceted. People think it’s easy to be a mom. When I read the script, I was happy to be a part of the film that changed that narrative.
As someone who’s not a mother, what did you learn about motherhood from the film?
I was able to have a better appreciation for moms, and to see the things that mothers do that often goes unappreciated. Moms often put their wants and needs last, be it to help their kids, their spouse, or the community in general. We take for granted things mother’s sacrifice or go out of their way to do. Motherhood is really a hard job to do. When I first heard about the film, I was like “Is this really something people would want to see?” But I definitely think it is. It’s not only entertaining, but enlightening as well. Taking part in this film also taught me to step outside of my comfort zone in order to encourage other women to do the same (like the pole dancing class).