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Posted at 11:42 AM ET, 03/18/2009

Who is Rashida Jones?

By Liz Kelly

Rashida Jones. (Getty Images)

"I have no idea who Rashida Jones is at all." -- TD in Baltimore

TD, you're not alone. Earlier this week, I was shocked -- shocked I tell you -- to read several similar comments about the co-star of this weekend's upcoming "I Love You, Man." I guess I just assumed everyone watched "The Office" because "Office" watchers know her as Karen Fillipelli, the perfectly nice chick Jim dumps for long-time crush Pam.

In this clip, Karen and Pam throw a competing holiday party to thwart Angela:

Still not ringing a bell? In that case, here's a quick primer on Rashida Jones.

You Should Know Her From: "The Office," the short-lived Farrelly Brothers comedy series "Unhitched" and one episode of "Freaks and Geeks" (which co-starred "I Love You, Man's" Jason Segel.)

Upcoming Projects: After this weekend's release, we'll see Jones as a concerned citizen opposite Amy Poehler's city official on the new comedy "Parks and Recreation," premiering April 9 on NBC. Although not an "Office" spin-off, the show -- developed by two "Office" writers -- is being filmed in the same mockumentary style. Here, Jones talks about how she got involved with the project.

Lineage: Jones's father is composer, producer, multiple Grammy winner Quincy Jones and her mother is Jones's former wife, actress Peggy Lipton (the "Mod Squad's" Julie Barnes and, more recently, hard-working diner owner Norma Jennings in cult classic "Twin Peaks.")

Jones has been linked romantically to Tobey Maguire, Seth Meyers and "Office" co-star John Krasinski and was briefly engaged to producer Mark Ronson (yep, Samantha's bro) in 2003.

But she remains guarded about her private life, telling Details, "I don't think that there's been one example in history where somebody has openly talked about their personal life and it's done them any good."


What Lies Beneath: Aside from acting, Jones is an accomplished singer, with credits ranging from Maroon 5 backing vocals to Gap ads to Harvard's co-ed a cappella group, The Harvard Opportunes. Jones graduated from Harvard in 1997 with a degree in religion and philosophy.

Oh, and along with Natalie Portman Jones came up with this novel solution to the world's problems:

And this one.

By Liz Kelly  | March 18, 2009; 11:42 AM ET
Categories:  Celebrities  
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Comments

(Oh, GREAT. I get singled out for my ignorance. Sheesh.)

I confess! I do not understand why everyone loves "The Office." Tried a few times to watch; just don't get it. I think it's overrated and smug, and I think Steve Carrell is a funny man when reined in, and he's not reined in there.

So sue me. Clearly my hopelessly dated humor gene is wandering somewhere among the original SNL, SCTV reruns, and Christopher Guest movies because I don't get the Owen Wilson or Will Ferrell appeal either. SO THERE. Wow, I feel so much better now. Thanks for letting me vent.

Who were we talking about again? Right. Rashida Jones. She is beautiful, and I hope to witness her talent sometime soon now that I know who she is.

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | March 18, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Thank goodness, td. I wondered if I was the only one who didn't like "The Office"; reminds me too much of a toxic workplace where I long ago toiled till I could afford to GTF out. Also agree that Rashida apparently has the potential for a career breakout (would love to see her mom on-screen again, too).

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I'll join in not sharing the love for the US version of "The Office". It was a perfect foil for Ricky Gervais in the BBC version, so I never quite warmed to the American version. That and, yes, as someone who worked in a toxic workplace, it just hit too close to home.

But I do like Rashida Jones...

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | March 18, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

I also think the Office is NOT funny at all. Luckily we are all in vast majority in saying so. Only 8 million people watch out of the 300 million people in the U.S. That means that 97.3% of us do not watch it.
Steve Carrell is EXACTLY like my boss, so I don't need to see any of that very unfunny behavior at home.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I don't find the Office funny either, but my Dh thinks it's hysterical. I think it might be a right brain - left brain thing. I also don't think the Three Stooges are funny, but hubby will laugh and laugh and laugh...to the point where I want to smack him.

Posted by: VaLGaL | March 18, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse


TD, at least Queen Liz acknowledges you!

Old Elias has no idea who Radisha Jones was either! Just the other day, Mrs. Howe yelled for me to get out of the lab and come up to the house. She said come to the house for some (something beginning with the letter "s"). I heard sex, Mrs. Howe said shower.

Beyond that I am SHOCKED, SHOCKED that this month, no one commemorated or even mentioned a most important anniversary here on the island. March 1, 1932.

Posted by: elias_howe | March 18, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Count me among those who do not watch The Office. Watched once because my son is a fan, but I've never been a fan of that type of comedy. I do, however, remember that puppies and kitties video.

Posted by: hodie | March 18, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

But elias, usually someone commemorates the Lindburgh baby kidnapping on an almost daily basis here on the island....Perhaps we should declare it a holiday???

Posted by: hodie | March 18, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Wow, between DWTS, ANTM and this, I'm beginning to realize how crappy my tastes are, though I started to get a clue when I fell in love with Super Troopers.

I like The Office because it has the "It's funny because it's true" vibe. It reduces to the ridiculous. And nothing compares to Jim outsmarting Dwight at every turn. My favorite was when Jim had all of Dwight's calls forwarded to his (Jim's) phone, even the cell phone. Dwight got so frustrated, he smashed his own cell phone, added bonus for Jim! :)

Rashida Jones is definitely lovely, though. I kind of hope she stays obscure. The saddest thing to me is seeing talent get overhyped to the point of being annoying. (see: Carbon Leaf)

Posted by: eet7e | March 18, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Dont watch The Office. Don't care if this chick's father is Lionel Ritchie.

Posted by: jezebel3 | March 18, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I for one like the Stooges, but do not get The Office. Agree with td that Steve Carrell needs to be channelled, and on so much else. I'll bet td would watch if Penelope Cruz was on The Office. But then I guess it wouldn't be the same show, would it?

Posted by: reddragon1 | March 18, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Correction: Don't watch The Office.

Posted by: jezebel3 | March 18, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

She was also on Boston Public (a fabulous show I still miss) and the short-lived BBC series NY-Lon (as the New York half of a romantic comedy).

Posted by: csrpnt | March 18, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

valgal,
I already said I don't like the Office, but I laugh like crazy at the Stooges. The sad thing is that when I was 10 I thought the Stooges were dumb and immature, now at 47 I find them hilarious. My wife would agree with you that they are dumb and not funny.
And yes I have gotten more immature as I age.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

I love The Office, both versions, even though I live it daily to a certain degree.

Love Rashida Jones too, very pretty, good pedigree & I agree with whoever said they'd like to see her mom onscreen again.

Posted by: wadejg | March 18, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I like The Office (US version.) But my hubby can't watch it. Hits too close to home.

Rashida Jones is a fine actress and until two days ago when this whole thing came up, I didn't know she was the child of Quincy Jones & Peggy Lipton. As soon as I learned it I could see the resemblance to her mom. I wanted to be Julie in the Mod Squad so bad when I was in 9th grade. The show's tagline: "One black, one white, one blonde." Oh so cheesy.
BTW, Peggy Lipton was the blonde.

Posted by: pras40 | March 18, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

jez, no snark intended toward Lionel Ritchie, but Quincy Jones is an absolute music legend:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quincy_Jones

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I love both versions of The Office,too. They are funny in different ways.I liked RJ her when she was on the show- created drama (Pam, Jim and Karen!).

It totally blows my mind that some of you work in that kind of environment.

Posted by: Guest1234 | March 18, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

jez, no snark intended toward Lionel Ritchie, but Quincy Jones is an absolute music legend:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quincy_Jones

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 1:07 PM

I know. But I don't give a rat's a$s who his kids are.

Posted by: jezebel3 | March 18, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

apparently celebritology readers don't have a sense of humor or good taste (no offense, Liz). then again, most americans lack these qualities too. which would explain why more people watch crap like Idol, "Celebrity" Dancing and not quality shows like Office and Lost.

Posted by: wm44 | March 18, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Guest1234
It totally blows my mind that some of you work in that kind of environment.

You innocent young Lizard, you.


jez
I know. But I don't give a rat's a$s who his kids are

Then stay the $%*& off this page, and stop spreading your bile.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

The Office makes me chuckle and is really a character based show (probably why Americans have trouble connecting to it). However, I really only think of it as a warm up for 30 Rock.

Posted by: kvs71 | March 18, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Don't like the office, haven't heard of her either (actually, lots of people mentioned on this blog). But, I'm feeling really old to see Mod Squad Julie's daughter.

Posted by: kirstenpaulson | March 18, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I was in the "Who is Rashida Jones" camp too, TD. I had totally forgotten about the Funny or Die clip with Natalie Portman though. Great stuff!

I'm also in the "'The Office' triggers post-traumatic flashbacks" camp. I'll bet M*A*S*H* is less funny for Vietnam vets than for other people, too.

Wm44, get down off your high-horse, run along and play. Good taste is subjective, and this is an opinion forum.

Posted by: northgs | March 18, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

....Perhaps we should declare it a holiday???

Posted by: hodie | March 18, 2009 12:36 PM

Ah, YES!

And the Stooges are funny! Mrs. Howe thinks they are stupid but then again Mrs. Howe has no sense of humor.

Posted by: elias_howe | March 18, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

So Rashida Jones is an actress who want to be an actress, not a celebrity. Good on her.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | March 18, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Nosy,
Why don't you do a little Wikipedia research on Lionel Ritchie like you did on Quincy? I think you will see Lionel has about 20 top 10 hits on his resume.
wm44,
It always amazes me how everyone thinks that they only watch the "high quality" shows and people who do not watch the shows they like are dumb or just don't get it. Just because you like the Office doesn't make you a member of the Mensa society.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Boston Public rocked. Didn't get the connection. As a former sub teacher, have to say it came closer than anything else on TV to what school really was. Of course situations were exaggerated. It was TV.

Posted by: reddragon1 | March 18, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

most americans lack these qualities too. which would explain why more people watch crap like Idol, "Celebrity" Dancing and not quality shows like Office and Lost.

Posted by: wm44 | March 18, 2009 1:42 PM

------------------------------------------
I watch Dirty Jobs. I like my crap fresh and unfiltered.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | March 18, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

eet7e - what's going on with Carbon Leaf? I like them; are they getting too big for their britches?

Posted by: mat00 | March 18, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Just because you like the Office doesn't make you a member of the Mensa society.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 2:13 PM
--------------------------------------------
On her days off, Ms Snatchquatch likes to watch Maury Povich. And she has a monthly membership in the Menses Society.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | March 18, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

"I'll bet td would watch if Penelope Cruz was on The Office." --reddragon1

You know, red, I almost made a Penelope comment earlier, as in, now that I see Rashida, Penelope is all yours. But I just couldn't do it.

Glad to know I'm not the only one who doesn't get "The Office" -- I had no idea I'd start such a cathartic release for so many of you.

And if "The Office" is a "quality show," then clearly my time has passed. Which means I'll just have to find "Mod Squad" reruns to occupy my time in addition to the "It Takes a Thief" reruns I catch on Hulu.com once in a while.

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | March 18, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Iowahoosier, I specified that nothing I said re Quincy Jones was meant to imply snark on Lionel Ritchie. It's just that Q is an incredible talent, as a musician, composer, producer, entrepreneur, etc.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

sas probably wouldn't watch The Office even if Penelope Cruz were on it. Maybe if we keep mentioning it, her "people" will see and get her to do a guest shot. Then I'll watch one episode all the way through. Or maybe we'll get Salma Hayek. She might also be on The Office.

Posted by: reddragon1 | March 18, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

You get Penelope Cruz or Salma Hayek on The Office, and I'll watch. I'll even give you a plot synopsis: "Salma Hayek looks for a safe place to breast feed in the office."

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | March 18, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Nosy,
I wasn't really trying to snark on you, sometimes the written word comes across badly. You are great in my book, and much funnier then I.
Sasquatch,
Exactly, I am sure even Einstein took a break from quantum physics once in awhile and enjoyed watching something fun like, "Some Like it Hot" or "The Nutty Professor."

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Aw, Iowahoosier, thanks :-)))

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | March 18, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Sasquatch,
Duh on me. I just got your joke. I beleive my wife has a membership in that society as well! lol

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

wm44, hey, nothing wrong with liking "low brow" shows like AI or any other reality show for that matter. Sometimes people need a break from the weight of their daily lives. If you think American TV lowers the IQ, you should see what they show in Europe or Japan. I like a person who can watch a serious documentary, or a weighty drama but still enjoy a spoofy comedy or voyeuristic reality show. Good to be well rounded. And as to the type of comedy etc that they like, to each their own.

Posted by: hodie | March 18, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Exactly, I am sure even Einstein took a break from quantum physics once in awhile and enjoyed watching something fun like...

No, no, no, no, no. He made those Baby Einstein tapes for relaxation!


...a monthly membership in the Menses Society.

Is that something you can order from Harry and David? You know, a gift a month thingie?

Posted by: elias_howe | March 18, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

hodie,
Can I ask you a question? I am not trying to be mean, I really am curious. What kind of a doctor has the time to post to a celebrity based chat all day?
I think most of us are cubicle dwellers or attorneys, but you are supposed to be out saving lives and such.
Or do you work odd hours and are home during the day?

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 18, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Psst...just because someone on an anonymous comment form on washingtonpost.com says that they are a doctor/lawyer/accountant/trapeze artist does not make it true.

Posted by: fra84 | March 18, 2009 4:15 PM | Report abuse

But I would truly believe if they said they were a sandwich artist!

Posted by: elias_howe | March 18, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

No offense taken Iowahoosier. I am no longer in clinical practice and now work in management as a medical director. My job is mainly a desk job with occasional field trips to various medical facilities. My job is to make sure your doc stays current. Nice to have this outlet when my eyes begin to cross after looking at clinical data all day but lately with the all the medical stuff going around, it doesn't take me far enough away.

Posted by: hodie | March 18, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

I gotta take exception to "the perfectly nice chick Jim dumps for long-time crush Pam." No character on that show is "perfectly nice." They are all complete and total nutcases and Karen was no exception. It's what makes the show so funny. Only the guest actors are every nearly normal.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 18, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I get what you're saying yellojkt, but Karen was definitely nice when stacked up next to Angela, Dwight, Michael and most of the rest.

And for the record, I adore both "Office" versions, scads of high-calorie, low-nutrition reality TV and -- as everyone alreayd knows -- "Lost."

Posted by: Liz Kelly | March 18, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

"...most americans lack these qualities too. which would explain why more people watch crap like Idol, "Celebrity" Dancing and not quality shows like Office and Lost.

Posted by: wm44 | March 18, 2009 1:42 PM"

How do you explain the British loving "crap" like Pop Idol (original British version of AI) and the original Dancing with the Stars? I love The Office, but I hate this whole "Americans love crap, but other countries don't" idea. I lived in the UK, trust me, plenty of well-loved crap on TV there. Need an example? "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here" is a UK hit. Flopped here.

Posted by: HollywoodGirl | March 18, 2009 11:14 PM | Report abuse

hodie,
Thanks for answering. I know I would much prefer your current job to something like an emergency Doc or surgeon. I would hate to be the person who could not save someone and then have to tell the family they had lost a loved one.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | March 19, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

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