The Waxing Lady talks about getting the role, waxing Steve Carell and her toughest waxing job to date
In show business, one scene in the right movie can make your career. Cinema is littered with actors who gained acclaim overnight (and permanently etched themselves in the lore of moviedom) simply by saying a line or performing a specific action within a scene. There's Rob Reiner's mother, Estelle, famously saying,
"I'll have what she's having"during the "orgasm scene" in When Harry Met Sally.... Or, Ned Beatty's short but sweet role as Arthur Jensen in 1976's Network. Granted, Beatty was already an established actor, this "small" role would garner him an Academy Award nomination.
Now, while those same accolades haven't been bestowed upon Miki Mia (yet), this actress made a name for herself in the US this summer when she played "The Waxing Lady" in the box office hit, The 40 Year Old Virgin. In this memorable scene, Andy Stitzer (Steve Carell) has been coaxed by his friends into having his chest waxed. It was during this scene in which Mia's character actually ripped off Carell's real body hair, that she uttered her now famous line,
"I'm going to need more wax". Now people come up to Mia all the time and say this famous line back to her. Taught "waxing" in her native Japan by her Aunt, Mia has been living in the US for the past 5 years. Already established as a model/actress in Tokyo, The 40 Year Old Virgin was Mia's first major role in this country.
How did you get cast in The 40 Year Old Virgin?
Miki Mia: I'm a professional waxer and also an actor, and I went to the audition and I was in Japan when they called me back. And I flew back and went to the audition and I just somehow got it!
It seems to have worked out.
Miki Mia: I know! In many ways for the better.
How long did it take to shoot that waxing scene?
Miki Mia: We took about three or four hours.
Is that in anyway related to how long it might take to really wax somebody?
Miki Mia: Well, you know, I didn't wax Steve all the way. I only waxed him a quarter of it.
Yeah, I remember there being little speckles of blood everytime you would pull some of the waxing paper away.
Miki Mia: That was actually a little bleeding for what there should be. Like Steve had so much hair and he'd never done it. He had very long hair and I couldn't find his nipple at the beginning. That's how hairy he was.
Normally, when you do that does somebody shave themselves a little bit? Or, groom themselves a little bit?
Miki Mia: I actually trim them before. I asked them to trim Steve a little bit so he'll feel less pain, but they only trimmed him a tiny bit so that it'll look great on camera.
And it did.
Miki Mia: I know. Poor Steve!
Offscreen, during a quiet moment, did you finish the job on Steve?
Miki Mia: No, we left it that way and they used it for three weeks.
Oh yeah, because at the end of the movie his chest still looked like that.
Miki Mia: He kept it like that for three weeks or so. And then, he just shaved it all off because his wife didn't like it.
What does it cost if somebody wants to get their chest waxed? And can you look at the hair on someone's body and tell right away how long something's going to take?
Miki Mia: Yeah, Steve probably would have have been a couple of hundred dollars, at least. He had a lot of hair. (Laughs)
What is the toughest waxing job you've ever had?
Miki Mia: Well, actually, Steve was quite the cleanest job I've ever done. My husband (actor Zven Holmberg), I don't know if I should tell you, but at the Super Bowl party before The 40 Year Old Virgin shoot, I wanted to get practice and all. So, I said to all my husband's friends, "Line up. All of them are gonna get waxed. Everybody." And I was very drunk and I don't think I really remember how I was doing. But anyway, I was waxing my husbands feet and I forgot to put powder on it before, and the wax temperature was real low so I couldn't take his hair off much. I only made him bleed and also I took some of his skin off. He was just sobbing.
Just hearing you say that sounds painful! So what do have coming up next? Are you looking to act more?
Miki Mia: Well, I'm promoting this DVD for The 40 Year Old Virgin right now. And I'm preparing for this waxing competition/ hairy competition coming up on December 12th. And also, I'm going to be on a live TV show that same day and I'll be waxing the audience on the stage.
Wait, now there's a contest to wax people?
Miki Mia: Yeah, Craig will tell you details. I'm going to the be the judge!
At this point in the interview, Craig, the person who connected Miki Mia and MovieWeb on the phone comes on the line.
Craig: Yeah, what we're doing is in retail markets, in LA as well, we're having basically a hairy chest contest. And we're inviting people down and they can win a monetary reward if they come on down and have the hairiest chest. Miki will be there to judge and participate. It should be really really funny. The one in LA is going to take place at the Burke Williams Spa on December, 12th.
Miki Mia: The prize is $1000, right?
Craig: I believe in LA it will be $1000.
Miki Mia: Yeah!!
Craig: What I think this speaks to is how one little scene in a movie can make such an impression on pop culture.
Craig: I think, this is a scene people will be talking about five or ten years from now as a great comedy moment. You can already see that it's seeping into the culture.
And plus, on top of this, people getting waxed is happening more now than I think it's ever happened in the history of this country.
Miki Mia: Wow! That's flattering to hear.
That's why we need people like you!
Miki Mia: Great! Well, I'd love to do some wax commercials or something for them.
The 40 Year Old Virgin waxes it's way on to DVD shelves December 13th, 2005.
Dont't forget to also check out: 40-Year-Old Virgin [Unrated] [WS]