Allison Tolman is an actress best known for her portrayal of Molly Solverson on season one of FX’s Fargo, a role that earned her Emmy and Golden Globe nominations. Currently, she’s starring alongside Adam Scott, Toni Collette and David Koechner in Krampus, which is out today in theaters nationwide. Watch the trailer for it here.
Allison was nice enough to take a few minutes out of her busy schedule recently to answer a few questions from us.
1. You walk into a bar. What do you order from the bartender?
I’m a whiskey girl, so my go-to is usually an old fashioned or a sazerac. Or just… whiskey. My current favorite is Bulliet Bourbon. But I have two drinks that I’ll always opt for if they’re available — a super smoky 10-year-old scotch I recently discovered called Ardbeg, and literally any cocktail containing Mezcal. Mezcal and gasoline you say? YES PLEASE YOU HAD ME AT MEZCAL.
2. Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?
A few months ago I read about an “instagram cleanse” which suggested you stop following accounts that make you engage in “unhealthy comparative thinking.” So I unfollowed a bunch of (completely blameless) lifestyle, fashion, and personal accounts that I determined made me feel badly about myself. Then I started following a shit ton of feminists, authors, and body positivity bloggers instead. It’s been awesome. To name a few — @LenaDunham, @TessHolliday, @EffYourBeautyStandards, @vanrubyroxx, @theLindyWest, @fullerfigurefullerbust, @PizzaSisters4Lyfe, @loeybug, @SueBryce, @stylishcurves, @MindyKaling, @theAshleyGraham, @girlwithcurves, @RainDovemodel, @AmyPoehlersSmartGirls
3. What’s currently waiting for you on your DVR?
The Affair, Walking Dead, Homeland, Brooklyn 99, Tiny House Nation, Life In Pieces. Also that movie about Edward Snowden that my boyfriend recorded months ago and we keep meaning to watch but don’t.
4. It’s your last meal — what are you going out with?
A medium-rare cheeseburger. Side of crispy fries. I’ve thought about this A LOT. Like, probably more than a non-murderer should.
5. What websites do you visit on a regular basis?
The standards — Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. I’m a sucker for a good list, so I frequent Buzzfeed. I also really enjoy Jezebel for news and editorials. And I’ve been a reader of PostSecret’s Sunday secrets for YEARS.
6. What’s the most frequently played song on your mobile device?
I don’t keep music on my mobile device.
Oh Jesus, am I old? I’m old, aren’t I.
7. The first face that comes to mind when you think “punchable”?
Oh man. I’m watching The Affair right now, and the moment Brooke Lyons’ character Eden came on screen I was like, “NOOOOOO I DON’T LIKE YOU STAY AWAY FROM NOAH YOU BAD BAD WOMAN NOOOOO.” She’s so beautiful, and you know what they say about once a cheater and always being a cheater. I was instantly wary of where this was going. I’m sure Brooke is a lovely woman and I certainly don’t want to punch her. But she and the writers are doing something very right if within 15 seconds of meeting her character she became my new favorite antagonist.
Brooke = Good (Probably, but we’ve never met.)
Eden = Punchable (for sure.)
8. What’s the last thing you Googled?
The travel time from LAX to PIT. Though usually it’s either like, an obscure serial killer or a recipe for chili.
9. Dogs or cats?
This is tricky. I grew up with both cats and dogs (and guinea pigs and hamsters and snakes and lizards) but my first pet of my own is a cat — my sweet baby Annie, AKA the most beautiful cat in the universe. So I consider myself a cat person. But with my recent casting in ABC’s Downward Dog, I plan to get back in touch with my dog-person side immediately. I wouldn’t want any tension on set between my costar and I. That’d be ruff. Ha. Get it? OH MY GOD I’M SO SORRY.
10. Best concert of your life was…?
There’s a band called Mucca Pazza based out of Chicago that puts on one of the most phenomenal shows I’ve ever seen. They’re infectious, immersive, and profoundly joyful. I’d expand but I want you to be as surprised and delighted as I was if you ever get the chance to see them. Follow them on Twitter to see where they end up next and if it’s anywhere near you— GO. (@MuccaPazza)
11. What book are you most likely to give as a gift?
I’m far more likely to lend books out to a friend looking for a good read than to gift a book. I really enjoy turning people on to Tana French, a spooky Irish murder squad novelist I adore. I’m also the go-to girl in my circle for anyone looking to pick up a feminist/comedic memoir.
12. What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
It was my first scene on my first day of my first TV show — Fargo. I was incredibly nervous and trying to just stay out of the way and do my job. I was sitting across a diner table from Shawn Doyle, who played Bemidji’s ill-fated Police Chief Vern Thurman. We were waiting for the crew to finish setting up so we could start rolling. Shawn is a TV pro and has spent so much time on sets he has a level of ease when he works that is unparalleled. He looked at me across the table and said in his super soothing, slightly Newfoundlandian accent, “Do you mind if we run these lines? That’d really help me out.” It could be that he just really wanted to run the scene before we did it, but knowing what I know about Shawn now I don’t think it was that simple. He saw I was paralyzed and he gave me something to focus my nervous energy on. He gave me a task to perform in an unfamiliar environment where it’s easy to feel like you’re in the way. He gave me the permission I needed to be imperfect on my first day and, if I’m being honest, every single day after. And to top it all off, he phrased it in such a way as to spare me any undue attention at a time when I was trying to act like I knew what I was doing but actually had no clue. Instead, I would be doing him a big favor if I’d help him prepare for the scene by running these lines. It was unbelievably kind and greatly appreciated — I’ll remember it forever.
13. South Park or Family Guy?
South Park. While both have well-earned reputations for pushing the boundaries of comedy and saying the unthinkable, I find the heart of South Park to be kinder.
14. You have an entire day to do whatever you want. What would you do?
Get up and have a piece of toast and some tea. Work out before my boyfriend is even awake. Walk to an early brunch and get a little tipsy. Wander around and look in record stores and home-goods boutiques. Decide to catch a movie and eat buttered popcorn for lunch. Head home to nap. Hope for a rainstorm. Wake up and lay around flipping through my phone with my cat in the crook of my arm. Sit in my favorite chair and read while my boyfriend watches football. Head to the park to watch him play softball with his buddies. Go home to grill up dinner and watch HGTV. Tuck myself in by 11:00 p.m.
15. What movie can you not resist watching if it’s on?
The Family Stone. A million times a season and twice on Sundays. My boyfriend walked into the living room the other day while it was on, gazed pityingly at me as I was weeping, and walked immediately back out of the room.
16. The sports team or teams you’re most passionate about?
I’m the worst kind of fair weather fan — as soon as my alma mater’s football team began to show any signs of excellence I started caring about sports for the first time in my entire life. Sic em Bears! I also really like the Sacramento Kings because I saw a gif of Omri Casspi player fixing DeMarcus Cousin’s crooked headband once and it made me really happy.
17. Where did you eat the best meal of your life?
The dinner I had at Mr. Wong in Sydney this past spring was pretty spectacular and well worth the wait. But I don’t know y’all, my mom’s schnitzel is damn good.
18. The last movie you saw in a theater?
The last Hunger Games. I adore going to the movies though my boyfriend does not, and we’ve somehow managed to see all of this series together. He knows I love going to see a movie in the theater so he indulges me, otherwise I go solo or drag along a girlfriend.
19. Who was your first celebrity crush?
Jonathan Taylor Thomas. I feel like I’ve answered this question before and eventually he is going to read one of these interviews and be like, “Get in line, woman in your early 30’s”. That’ll be super embarrassing. For my boyfriend. WHEN I LEAVE HIM TO RUN AWAY WITH JTT.
20. What would you cook if Nic Cage was coming to your house for dinner?
I’d grill up some damn steaks and break out that scotch I was telling you about. Then I’d ask him to bring a salad of his choice just out of curiosity.
Here’s the trailer for Krampus…
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