Amy Poehler Interview: Hope for 'Smart Girls' Who Have It Hard

By 11/19/2008
Amy Poehler Interview: Hope for 'Smart Girls' Who Have It Hard

With Amy Poehler‘s new web series Smart Girls At The Party from ON Networks picking up steam this week, we caught up with new mom Poehler to hear her thoughts on the show and the world of web television. The 8-episode series, which recently landed Mattel’s Barbie line as its lead sponsor prior to its official launch, stars Poehler along with longtime friends Meredith Walker and Amy Miles. Created for girls and their parents, its mission is to “help young girls find confidence in their own aspirations and talents.” In each episode, Poehler interviews a smart young girl with a unique talent, community interest or point of view.

Amy Poehler - Smart Girls At The Party Tubefilter: Amy, how did Smart Girls the series come together?
Amy Poehler: Meredith and I wanted to do a funny, Charlie Rose style talk show for girls. All we knew was we wanted it to celebrate real girls and real friendships, and we wanted it to end with a dance party. We asked our good friend and musician Amy Miles to join us, and we were off.

Tubefilter: Tell us about the choice to do Smart Girls as a web series versus a traditional TV show. What made you choose the web?
Poehler: It’s great to able to make something cheap and fast. The internet allows you to do that. Plus, I love the idea of using the internet for something positive. There are so many things you don’t want your kid to see on the computer, I’m hoping this will be the kind of thing that girls can watch alone in their room, with friends, or with their whole family.

Tubefilter: The internet is such a huge part of young people’s lives today, do you think original web series will ever surpass prime-time television in popularity?
Poehler: I do. I think the computer is the new fireplace. Families huddle around it for warmth. I can watch things on a phone for Pete’s sake. You’re talking to a lady who didn’t have email when she went to college. The future is now!

Tubefilter: What do you think about the current slate of popular TV shows – are there enough intelligent female role models?
Poehler: Nope.

Smart Girls At The Party - web series
Tubefilter: Who were some of your role models growing up?
Poehler: Pat Benetar, Rosalyn Carter, Gilda Radner, Billie Jean King, Fred Rogers, Bill Cosby, My Mom and Dad, and Animal from The Muppets.

Tubefilter: Are young women discouraged from being smart?
Poehler: It can be hard to be smart these days. It can be hard to be an original, or to show you care about anything. We wanted to do something that celebrated kids who were passionate about something and not afraid to show it.

Tubefilter: What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?
Poehler: You’re a good friend.

Tubefilter: It looks like you had a whole lot of fun in the series – spontaneous dance parties! Any rap sessions break out?
Poehler: The dance party was our favorite part. I challenge anyone to dance around and not get happy. I wish I could end every project I do with a spontaneous dance party. Gets the blood pumpin, blood flowing, and gets you out of your head. Dr. Poehler prescribes a dance party anytime you wanna shake those blues away!

Tubefilter: Who should watch Smart Girls?
Poehler: Everyone and their mother.

You can watch new episodes of Smart Girls every Monday at