Even if you don’t know her name, you’ve definitely seen Judy Greer in something: She’s appeared in more than 80 film, TV and stage roles. She chronicles her career as a go-to supporting player in her quip-filled new book, “I Don’t Know What You Know Me From: Confessions of a Co-Star,” in which she dishes on red-carpet disasters, her love of late-night trips to CVS, and life as the perennial on-screen best friend.
Are there advantages to the fact that sometimes people can’t quite place you?
It always comes in handy, definitely. It’s kind of the best of both worlds — I get to have a great career and play great roles and work with great people, and I can go to Target whenever I want.
What do you like most about the kinds of roles you’ve played over your career?
I’ve always enjoyed the crazy roles I’ve played. Kitty Sanchez on “Arrested Development” really was a super fun role to play. It was just anything goes with her.
You called one of the chapters in your book “I Used to Be More Ugly.” Did suffering through some awkward years help you get to where you are today?
It made me rely on personality more than people who maybe didn’t have an awkward phase. I kind of feel like I had more fun by not always worrying about how you look.
You haven’t been afraid to look less than glamorous for a role.
I did an independent movie called “Barry Munday” where I didn’t go through hair and makeup at all. That kind of thing is really fun and really liberating.
You’ve played a lot of best friends. Who would you want cast as your best friend in a movie?
I never thought about that once in my life! That’s a really good question. Angelina Jolie. Angelina Jolie can play my best friend in a movie.
Are there any dream roles you’d love to get?
I’ve never been in an action movie. I would just once like to be chased by somebody; that seems fun. I also think it would be fun to be dropped out of a helicopter into a body of water.
What’s up next for you?
I’m super excited about a TV show I’m shooting for FX called “Married,” which premieres in July. I’m also very excited for “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.” My husband is a huge fan of the franchise and he begged me to get a role. And the one left was Cornelia, Andy Serkis’ ape wife, so I said, “I’m in, I’ll do it.”
Read a chapter of Greer’s book at Vanity Fair.