Adam Scott still relates to struggling actor he plays on 'Party Down'

"Party Down" Season 3 premieres Friday. Photo courtesy of Starz
1 of 5 | "Party Down" Season 3 premieres Friday. Photo courtesy of Starz

NEW YORK, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Adam Scott has been a successful TV star for decades, but the Severance and Parks & Recreation actor says he still finds it "super-easy" to relate to his Party Down character, Henry, and his professional struggles.

"I still feel exactly the same. I don't feel like a successful person," Scott told UPI in a recent Zoom interview with reporters.


"If you are trying to make it in show business, you always feel like being famous will feel like a warm embrace, but it doesn't feel that way," he said.

"It's not like a terrible feeling or something to complain about, but it's different. It's like an adjacent feeling. It's not what you expect. Having some success doesn't make you feel great at all."

The actor said he still doubts his abilities and questions his choices from time to time.


"Just last night, I was shooting, and I was like, 'What am I doing? I suck. I should not be here right now,'" he said. "Finding the way in on Henry is not difficult at all."

Scott said he always has been attracted to playing downbeat, everyman characters, such as those played in the 1970s and '80s by Charles Grodin and Albert Brooks.

"Those are guys that were really interested in finding the nooks and crannies of why simple things are hard," Scott said.

"There is a certain constant regret we all kind of carry around with us," he said with a laugh. "Not big heavy things. Just the little things like 'Why did I wear these shoes today? What an idiot!'"

Although many of the projects to which he is drawn explore workplace dynamics, Scott admitted he has little experience with "real" jobs outside of a summer stint making taffy at a California amusement park and acting.

"I never worked in an office or waited tables, so I am terrified I would be bad at it," he said. "I wouldn't know how to function in the job and then, socially, I would be a disaster. I would be voted out of the office."


Party Down is a comedy about a Los Angeles catering company staffed by artists who don't want to work there. Season 3 premieres on Starz on Friday after a 13-year hiatus.

Ken Marino, Jane Lynch, Martin Starr, Megan Mullally and Ryan Hansen reprise their roles from the first two seasons, while Jennifer Garner and James Marsden join the ensemble for the latest round of episodes.

Henry has officially given up his dreams of becoming an actor and reluctantly goes back to work for Party Down manager Ron (Marino), who has lost his sense of smell because of COVID-19 and is living out of his van.

Meanwhile, Hansen's character, Kyle, loses out on an incredible acting opportunity because of a past mistake, and Roman (Starr) still is writing sci-fi screenplays no one wants to read.

"A special thing about Party Down -- and something that John [Enbom] writes really well -- is that really outrageously funny, ridiculous things happen in the same world where there is a very real problem being worked out or handled," Scott said.

"What makes it so fun to do is knowing that we get to do this crazy stuff, and then a scene later, we could be having a heartbreaking conversation, and it all feels of the same world."


Party Down is a show that critics loved, but didn't initially find an audience. Its fan base has grown exponentially over the past decade, however.

"It was great. We sort of watched it snowball over the last 13 years," Scott said.

"When we made the show, people didn't really know it existed. We didn't care. We didn't expect anyone to know about it. We just loved doing it and were doing it for ourselves and each other and it was super-fun."

In some ways, the earlier episodes of the show reflected the frustrations the cast members felt about their own places in Hollywood before Scott broke out, Lynch landed on Glee, Starr showed up on Tulsa King and original cast member Lizzy Caplan graduated to Masters of Sex, Castle Rock and Fleishman Is in Trouble.

"We all connected with these characters because success was out of reach for all of us, as well, so it was therapeutic in a way. We got those feelings," Scott recalled.

"In the years after, it just sort of snowballed and, little by little, more and more people were getting into it to the point I'm asked about it just as much as Parks & Rec or Step-Brothers or Severance," he added.


"It's one of the things that people really love and people really feel like they kind of discovered it, which is really cool."

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