Pop Culture

Julia Louis-Dreyfus talks drama: 'I really like making people cry'

From "Saturday Night Live" to "Seinfeld" to "Veep," Julia Louis-Dreyfus has made a name for herself as one of the leading ladies of small-screen comedies. But the actress discovered something surprising about herself when she took a dramatic turn on the big screen in "Enough Said."

"These are the jobs I got," she said of her usual funny fare. "And don't get me wrong, I love making people laugh. But now it turns out, I really like making people cry."

And she did just that in the romantic dramedy which saw her play a divorcee who unwittingly starts a relationship with her friend's ex-husband, a role played by the late James Gandolfini.

"The job meant the world to me," Louis-Dreyfus told TODAY's Savannah Guthrie. "And working with James Gandolfini on this project was just dreamy."

The actor, who died two months before the film's release, wasn't exactly typical romantic-lead material by Hollywood's usual standards. But his co-star knew it would work from the start.

"Oh, 100 percent, yeah — we did have an immediate chemistry," she said. "It was a very precious time."

And this awards season, with all the accolades the film has received, is also a precious time — one Louis-Dreyfus wishes she could share with Gandolfini.

"I keep expecting him to be here," she said.

Gandolfini has received several posthumous nominations for his work in "Enough Said," including supporting actor nods from Screen Actors Guild Awards, the Independent Spirit Awards and the Critics' Choice Awards. All are still pending. In addition to her Globes noms, Louis-Dreyfus was nominated for Critics' Choice and Satellite awards for her part in the film, and Screen Actors Guild and Satellite noms for her performance in "Veep."

"Enough Said" is now available on Blu-ray. The third season of "Veep" premieres in April on HBO.