Zooey Deschanel may have already started her acting career at the time, but her role as Jovie in the 2003 holiday comedy “Elf” elevated her career to new heights. Starring alongside Will Ferrell as his love interest, Deschanel’s comedic and musical skills shined through. Over a decade later, “Elf” remains the actress’ most notable film of her career. Forbes also named the film as the fifth highest-grossing Christmas film of all time, earning over $220.4 million worldwide.
Deschanel described working on set of the film as “a challenge to not laugh,” per her 2003 interview with About.com. Fortunately for Deschanel, Christmas has always been one of her most anticipated holidays since she was a child. “[Christmas] was the best, actually. I was just watching a video of myself from when I was six, opening presents, my God, veraciously,” she added. “I love Christmas and I really got in to the spirit of it – early on in the year usually. Maybe June, July, perhaps May or April, I would begin to talk about what we would do on Christmas.”
In retrospect, she told InStyle in 2018 she is still shocked by the film’s popularity, “I was 21 when I made that movie, so I didn’t really have a lot of perspective on anything. All I know is when I read that script, I was laughing out loud the entire time and I felt like it was something that was special.” She also mentioned she didn’t know how much of an impact “Elf” had until she realized, “Oh, when you have something good that’s a holiday thing, it comes back every year!” Deschanel keeps us in holiday spirit every year — we love to see it!