Sarah Silverman tries Fox sitcom about television

Tuesday, February 12, 2002

If she weren't acting or telling jokes, comic Sarah Silverman would be playing with monkeys.

"I wouldn't want to be like Dian Fossey (author of 'Gorillas in the Mist') and live in the jungle with them, because I need plumbing, but if I weren't in show business, I'd work with monkeys," Silverman says. "I feel like I am part simian."

Perhaps that's why she's comfortable snuggling up to her puppet co-stars on Fox's midseason sitcom "Greg the Bunny," starting March 27 at 8:30 p.m.

Silverman plays TV executive Alison Kaiser, who persuades producer Gil Bender (Eugene Levy) to cast a rabbit puppet named Greg in a children's show, "Sweetknuckle Junction."

Although she has guest-starred on everything from NBC's "Seinfeld" to UPN's "Star Trek Voyager," "Greg the Bunny" is Silverman's first full-time role in prime time.

The series sprang from a public-access cable show developed by producers Dan Milano and Spencer Chinoy.

As a comedian, Silverman, 29, is known for telling sexually frank jokes and others that have been considered offensive. For example, last summer, an offhand joke about Chinese-Americans on NBC's "Late Night" generated national attention and an apology from NBC.

Silverman isn't giving up her comedy career. But she is looking for more acting work.

Her big TV break came in 1993, when she joined the cast of NBC's "Saturday Night Live," though her run ended after one unsatisfying year.

"Greg the Bunny" is a sharp contrast to her work on "SNL," she says.

"This is a very different part for me," Silverman says.