When Rebel Wilson‘s fans tune in to her upcoming ABC comedy “Super Fun Night,” they’ll be surprised to see the Australian comedienne speaking (and, some might say, struggling) with an American accent. It’s only reasonable to assume that, as creator and writer, Wilson could have created an Australian character for herself, which only makes the decision not to all the more puzzling.
During the show’s panel at the Television Critics Association summer 2013 press tour on Sunday (Aug. 4), Wilson was quizzed on the reasoning behind making her character Kimmie an American. “Um, my American accent is really, really good,” Wilson joked in an over-the-top Southern accent, to much laughter. “I mean, I started acting in the theater as an actress doing all different characters and all different accents and even when I first came to America and was doing movies, I thought I would be playing American all the time and it was just weird how it worked out that I played more international characters and Australian a lot.
“So when I had the opportunity to do this TV show in America, the concept was three girls who lived in Manhattan, who’ve known each other since they were 13, 14 years of age and I just really thought that I had to make this character American.”
The series tells the story of Wilson’s Kimmie and her two best friends who attempt to venture outside their safe bubble to have a — you guessed it — super fun night. While airing this season on ABC as a single-cam series, Wilson’s creation was originally conceived as a multi-camera series with a live audience for CBS. That network ultimately passed on the show, which allowed the Alphabet to snatch it up and retool it to fix their channel’s sensibilities.
During their panel, Wilson and executive producer Conan O’Brien spoke on what that transition was like. When asked what she learned from the process, Wilson joked, “That I should’ve put out.”
“I far prefer the show in single camera,” O’Brien admitted. Both he and co-exec producer John Riggi said that the new format allowed for a far wider range of emotion to be put on display, allowing the series to tap into Wilson’s vulnerability that might otherwise have been lost while filming before a live audience.
“Super Fun Night” premieres on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 9:30 p.m. ET on ABC.