In A.C.O.D., Adam Scott plays Carter, a guy who’s got a great career, a great girlfriend and a firm grip on reality. That grip, however, unravels over the course of 90 minutes, as he struggles with the complications and comprimises that come with being an “adult child of divorce.” While the film has its comedic moments, audiences will find Scott’s performance much more serious than his lovable Parks and Recreation character Ben Wyatt. Rolling Stone spoke with Scott about divorce, the new season of Parks and the horror of walking in on your parents having sex.
In A.C.O.D., you play a guy who’s struggling to come to terms with his parent’s failed marriage. Is this one of the heavier roles you’ve played?
I don’t think it’s the heaviest, but certainly has its moments. It’s a pretty heavy subject, but the movie keeps it fairly light and figures out a way to turn something pretty sad into something pretty funny.
One of the weirder moments in the film is when your character’s parents get back together in a “friends with benefits” situation.
One of the ultimate nightmares for any person is to walk in on their parents. It’s surreal for people that haven’t spoken in 20 years and have been divorced for so long, having sex right in front of your eyes.
Did your parents stay together?
No, they split when I was about five. But it was a much different situation than the movie. It was amicable; there were no arguments. It was a perfectly happy upbringing for me and my siblings.
The film brings up the idea of the “divorce generation” as a phenomenon – but still, it’s an individual phenomenon. What do you think of that label?
It might be a sign of healthiness. For a lot of people, divorce is an incredibly healthy move to make in your life. Now, I’m sure if I got married when I was 22, I’m not sure that would’ve worked out. I think a lot of us are a lot more cautious with marriage because of what we saw happening with our parents. I see a lot more healthy marriages in my generation than they probably saw in theirs.
Was it strange to have Amy Poehler play your step mom?
It was really fun, because we’re so lovey-dovey on Parks and Rec. It was fun to hate each other; really hate each other’s guts. Because in real life, we really do hate each other very much. It was great to finally let that out on screen.
Speaking of Parks, what’s in store for the new season?
As you saw in the premiere, Leslie is in the midst of a battle with Pawnee over her recall. So there’s going to be an election coming up. We’re all just rallying behind Leslie. But Ben has another career crisis on the horizon.
Just from the first episode, it seems like there could be a lot of change coming for everybody.
Yeah, I think that’s true.
Plus, it was announced earlier this year that Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones are leaving the show. Have you shot the final episodes with them?
No, no. That’s coming up. I’m not sure when, but I know it’s coming up. And it’s going to be really sad.