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Why We Don’t See Zooey Deschanel As Often Anymore

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Zooey Deschanel is an indie icon. With her classic beauty, thick bangs, droll wit and smoky voice, the almost-forty brunette will always be remembered for her roles in Elf, (500) Days of Summer, All The Real Girls, and of course, seven seasons as Jessica Day in Fox’s New Girl. But girlfriend doesn’t seem to be getting too many scripts these days. What gives?

The Sitcom Grind

Deschanel has been acting for a long time. She was even in a video for Offspring in the ’90s, if that helps with her timeline. She’s been at it for a while, and the sitcom schedule is pretty grueling. She might be ready for a break.

Grub Street

Also, New Girl was on Fox for seven seasons. That’s pretty significant in the shelf life of a sitcom. It’s possible that audiences might identify her as Jessica Day, which would mean making her believable in a different role could be challenging. The films she’s taken on lately—Your Highness and Rock the Kasbah—didn’t do remarkably at the box office.

Manic Pixie Mom

Film critic Nathan Rabin coined the phrase, “Manic Pixie Dream Girl,” to describe a character in movies who serves as the playful and mysterious love interest opening a male character up to adventure. Deschanel played a lot of Manic Pixie Dream Girl roles, probably the most iconic one being Summer across from Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Well, we know how brutal Hollywood can be about aging. Deschanel is pushing forty and she’s a mother now. Audiences don’t see her as the Manic Pixie Dream Girl any longer. And she’s probably ready for more mature roles as well. Most Manic Pixie Dream Girls don’t change diapers.

Legal Troubles

In 2015, Deschanel’s former agent Sarah Jackson sued Deschanel, seeking a percentage of the actress’s profits from her website, Hello Giggles. Deschanel’s defense was that when she changed from being managed by Creative Arts Agency to United Talent Agency, her career stalled and so did her paycheck. It’s possible that tangling with powerful players in Hollywood made her a little risky for hire in upcoming films.

Tommaso Boddi/WireImage

There’s no doubt Deschanel is beyond talented and a treat on the big or small screen. We just know she’ll find a solid project soon.

Walk of Fame

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