No one does comedy quite like Maya Rudolph, and she's back at it again with Apple TV's Loot, which premieres on June 24. Executive produced by Parks and Recreation's Matt Hubbard and Alan Yang (who also worked on The Good Place, where Rudolph played the very impatient Judge), the new series follows recent divorcee and newly-minted billionaire Molly as she explores the world of charitable foundations in the wake of matrimonial disaster.
Friction arises early when Molly meets the head of her foundation, Sofia (Michaela Jaé Rodriguez, Pose), who is not impressed with her boss' carefree ways and wants to ensure everyone does their job to give back as much as possible. The aforementioned credentials of the EPs probably give away that the story will be feel-good and heartfelt, even if there are speed bumps along the way and zany antics that each character must deal with on their journey to becoming their best selves.
Screen Rant spoke to Rudolph and Rodriguez about where Molly and Sofia each start off in their journeys, how they grow closer over the course of Loot season 1, and how they wish to give back in their own lives.
Screen Rant: I'm loving Loot, except that you have forced me to view Adam Scott as a bad husband, and it is horrible. Can you talk about how he is the catalyst for change in Molly's life, Maya?
Maya Rudolph: Yes! Thank God we saw Adam Scott in Stepbrothers to know that he can be a real douchebag - but played so beautifully. And because he's a douchebag, he ends up really completely turning Molly's life upside down. He cheats on her, they get divorced, and because they didn't have a prenup, she's left with $87 billion. Which is what happens everybody, right?
I wish, that would be so great. Michaela Jaé, I love this dynamic that you've got going on with Molly. At first, it's like, "Why are you here?" But over the course of the season, we get a real camaraderie there. Can you talk about working with Maya, and how Sofia comes to Molly differently?
Michaela Jaé Rodriguez: One, working with Maya was a dream. Never thought, as much as I dreamed of working with her in my time, I never thought I would get a chance to actually work with Maya. It was such a pleasure actually sharing space with her. So, that's number one.
And two, I think the development of Sofia was helped through the character of Molly.
Specifically, reading the scripts and seeing how in the very beginning, she's so standoffish. She's like, "What are you doing? You don't have any understanding about how this works when it comes to the business side. Where have you been for this long?" And then she comes to realize, "This is someone who, actually, I strive to be like. At some point in life, I want to be able to be financially stable and able to do this. Maybe I do need to take a page out of our book, and we can learn from each other." And I think that's what happens.
Speaking of learning from each other, what is something that you learned from Molly's journey, whether it comes from the spirit of giving or even making friendships at work?
Maya Rudolph: Well, I do think about making friendships at work, because you really don't know what your life is going to be - especially in a situation like that when her life changes so radically. I don't think she was anticipating at all what this new life was going to be, and how she was going to end up developing new relationships and creating a new family.
Her work family really is the biggest surprise, I think, to every element of her life. I think she really never saw that coming, and what that gives her.
We get to hear a little bit about Sofia's backstory in one of the early episodes, which was really interesting to me. What aspects of her life would you like to explore more, if we get more seasons?
Michaela Jaé Rodriguez: Whoa, that's a pretty darn good question. Maybe just an understanding of her family, and to see if they're still around; see if she's still in contact with them. I'm sure she still is, and I'm sure she wouldn't want to pass up on her family, but she seems like such a workhorse that she would probably do something like this.
Maybe [meet] her family and see how she got to where she was because of her family.
Finally, because we are about the spirit of giving at Loot, what is one cause near and dear to your heart that you would like viewers to help with?
Maya Rudolph: Oh, there are so many! Oh, gosh. You really put me on the spot. I'm just gonna say Planned Parenthood, because it's the first one I thought about. That works for me today.
In “Loot,” billionaire Molly Novak (Maya Rudolph) has a dream life, complete with private jets, a sprawling mansion and a gigayacht — anything her heart desires. But when her husband of 20 years betrays her, she spirals publicly, becoming fuel for tabloid fodder. She’s reaching rock bottom when she learns, to her surprise, that she has a charity foundation run by the no-nonsense Sofia Salinas (Michaela Jaé Rodriguez), who pleads with Molly to stop generating bad press.
With her devoted assistant Nicholas (Joel Kim Booster) by her side, and with the help of Sofia and team — including mild-mannered accountant Arthur (Nat Faxon) and her optimistic, pop-culture-loving cousin Howard (Ron Funches) — Molly embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Giving back to others might be what she needs to get back to herself.
The first 3 episodes of Loot season 1 will premiere June 24 on Apple TV+, followed by new episodes every Friday.