STAR IN AWE OF OTHER BEINGS
MINDY Kaling has written for, acted in and directed episodes of the US version of The Office. She created and starred in her own sitcom, The Mindy Project, has appeared in movies from The 40
Year Old Virgin and Inside Out to the upcoming Ocean’s 8 and is author two best-selling books.
Yet, when it comes to multimedia empires, the 38year-old reckons she’s got nothing on her A Wrinkle In
Time castmates Oprah Winfrey and Reese Witherspoon.
“In my world I’m considered very busy. In this world ... I’m almost napping compared to Reese and Oprah,” Kaling laughs. “As someone who does wear a lot of different hats — my own show, a writer, actor and director and things like that — it’s been really inspiring to be around two people who do that and more.
“You set your sights at a certain height and then you meet people that make you think even bigger.”
In the Disney adaptation of Madeleine L’Engle’s classic 1962 novel, Kaling, Winfrey and Witherspoon play three ancient beings who help a young girl find her power and travel the universe to rescue her father. “I’m a celestial being, I’m
literally a star!” Kaling exclaims. “Mrs Who is a character who loves visiting other planets, such that she feels that everything worth saying has been said so she’s just going to speak in quotations.
“Because I’m such an expressive and chatty person, to only speak in other people’s words was a little bit of a challenge for me,” she concedes. “I come from comedy and improvisational comedy, but this had to be very precise — Mrs Who would never be looseygoosey with quotations.”
A Wrinkle In Time shot for two weeks in remote parts of New Zealand, putting this certified city-slicker out of her comfort zone. “I don’t even like driving 20 minutes outside of New York City when I’m at home, so for me, it was unbelievable.”
But being “halfway around the world together” cemented Kaling’s bond with Winfrey and Witherspoon. “I’d come to work at 5 o’clock in the morning dying to hear stories from the two of them,” she says.