Jennifer Coolidge Flirting With Jeremy Allen White Is the Best Thing You’ll See Today

"I just want you to know that I rigged that, because I have a crush on you," Coolidge tells The Bear star in Variety's latest Actors on Actors interview.

Jennifer Coolidge Flirting With Jeremy Allen White Is the Best Thing You’ll See Today

In a world of unsettling, even disturbing celebrity pairings—Timothée and Kylie; Taylor and Matty; Al Pacino and the 29-year-old woman who “loves old people” that he just impregnated—it’s incredibly refreshing to witness real chemistry develop between two stars who feel downright destined to flirt with each other. Yes, Jennifer Coolidge is nearly twice as old as Jeremy Allen White (she’s 61, he’s 32), but for those of us who first came to know her as Stifler’s MILF mom in American Pie, nothing could make more sense than her looking a hot young man in the eye and announcing that she has a crush on him.

Coolidge and White, who plays the brooding chef Carmy in The Bear, sat down to interview each other for Variety’s Actors on Actors series, and their whole conversation is just delightful (and, at times, delightfully horny). White opens the interview by telling Coolidge that his show’s hair dresser has a prayer candle with her face on it, so he finds himself staring at her countenance every morning. Coolidge replies, “Thank you. I just want you to know that I rigged that, because I have a crush on you, and I sent that candle.”

“So I could be staring at it?” White banters back. “Good, good.”

Then the two get into the business of asking each other acting questions—him about her character Tanya in White Lotus, and her about Carmy. You can feel the deep respect they have for each other’s work in the back-and-forth. And then they get to Tanya’s final scene in the show:

WHITE: I wanted to ask you about the line, “These gays, they’re trying to murder me.” Do you ever get that on the streets? It’s become pretty iconic.
COOLIDGE: I know. I’m so thrilled. Mike was very confident about Tanya being pursued by these seemingly friendly gays that seem to be fans of hers. And then Mike was like, “We don’t see the gay men as being evil. This is a bad group.” But it’s interesting, because there was a whole group of gay men in New Orleans that went out on Mardi Gras as Tanya. Some of them were on scooters, and they all had “These gays, they’re trying to murder me.” It’s happened in other cities — even in Boston when I did Hasty Pudding. So it really did somehow strike a chord. Tell me about “Yes, Chef.” How many people in a day come up to you and say that?
WHITE: It’s a lot. We didn’t expect the show to do as well as it did. We were in New York last summer, and so I was always just walking around. And it happened in a week. All of a sudden, people shouting, “Yes, Chef!”

This gives Coolidge an opening to get a little flirtier:

COOLIDGE: You have many fans, and you have many girls that have crushes on you. I think a lot of people want to know why Carmy didn’t have a love interest.
WHITE: When we made the first season, we didn’t want any of the characters to have attachments to anything outside of the kitchen. And I think Carmen, he’s such a poor communicator and so socially inept in so many ways —
COOLIDGE: He would be good with a girl, though. It would be fun to watch your awkwardness.
WHITE: Yes. In the second season, Carmen tries to pursue some joy outside of work, and it doesn’t work out great. These people are working 15-hour days. It didn’t seem real that Carmy could find love.

And finally we get to the part where Coolidge straight-up says she’s always wanted to fuck angry chefs, which is the point at which I found myself needing to take a cold shower:

COOLIDGE: That is actually real. I think 99% of my jobs were all restaurant jobs. I was a waitress, and I always fell in love with the angry chefs. I don’t know what it is.
WHITE: What do you think it is?
COOLIDGE: I just like the way they throw the food down. It was so sexy. They’d be like, “Take it. Just take it.” And there’s something about a man who can do something fast.
WHITE: Did you pursue any of those?
COOLIDGE: Yes. There were a lot of chefs in my life. I have to say that when you see that hostile, tough person in the kitchen, it does transfer to real life when it’s out of the restaurant.


Honestly… GET IT JEN. Live our dream!!! I wouldn’t be surprised if these two secretly made out in a bathroom after the interview and that someday we’ll get to hear about it on a late night talk show.

Of course, Coolidge ended the interview with her signature eccentric humor, telling White that if White Lotus were to ever resurrect Tanya in any form, “maybe she could come back as a seagull and poke Greg’s eyes out.” The whole thing is worth reading—even if only for the masterclass in tasteful flirtation.

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