Saturday, March 15, 2008

Bury My Heart with Zooey Deschanel

By Evan Rytlewski
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With her dark, weary eyes and her dry persona, Zooey Deschanel is an improbable lead actress, but those same qualities have endeared her to indie culture. This year, the actress released a debut album with guitarist M. Ward as She and Him, and between her star power and Ward’s devoted following, theirs was one of SXSW’s more anticipated sets.

Deschanel is casting herself as something of a Jenny Lewis-type, a doll-sized, blue-eyed soul singer with a country lilt, but in spite of being the more seasoned actress, she doesn’t have Lewis’ confidence. She looked absolutely horrified on stage; her hands twitched slightly until she folded them together tightly. She interacted with the audience stiftly until the inevitable happened: During the routine call for requests, a woman shouted out “Last Christmas,” a mangled reference to Deschanel’s role in Elf.

"Last Christmas?” Deschanel said warmly, before computing the request. “Oh, yeahno.”

Sardonic and endearing, this was the Deschanel audiences were hoping for.

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