Deschanel on May cover of Marie Claire. (Tesh)Sure, she's considered "adorkable" now, but Zooey Deschanel's quirkiness wasn't always considered to be so cool. The "New Girl" star reveals in a new interview that she was bullied as a pre-teen because she was "chubby" and one classmate in particular was so cruel, she once spat in Deschanel's face. "I was ridiculed," the actress says in the May issue of Marie Claire. "I really don't know why she spit at me. I just talked to her. I guess I wasn't allowed to talk to her. I remember I couldn't believe it." But after she dropped 30 pounds, the doe-eyed actress adds that the kids at Crossroads — whose alumni include Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson, and Deschanel's pal Jonah Hill — "treated me differently."
Perhaps that sad experience growing up is why Deschanel, 32, says she doesn't want to have children of her own. She adds that she's perfectly content to be Aunt Zooey to Henry, the 7-month-old son of her sister, "Bones" star Emily Deschanel. Being a mom, she says, "has never been my focus. My sister was always very motherly, babysitting and stuff. I like kids, and I like being around kids — but it was never an ambition, something, like, I need … I like working. That's what I like doing. I like to work."
And work she has — steadily since leaving Northwestern University during her first year to follow in her parents' footsteps in Hollywood (dad Caleb is an Oscar-winning cinematographer; mom Mary Jo was an actress who appeared in "Twins Peaks"). Her breakout role was playing the rebellious sister of main protagonist William in the 2000 hit, "Almost Famous." Deschanel also starred in 2003's "Elf" with Will Ferrell and "(500) Days of Summer" with Joseph Gordon-Levitt — in addition to fronting her own band, She & Him, and starting her own female-friendly blog, HelloGiggles.com — before finally scoring the role of Jess on "New Girl," which earned a Golden Globe nomination in its first season.
Deschanel is so busy, she hardly has time for her personal life. Since splitting from Death Cab For Cutie singer Ben Gibbard last November after two years of marriage, she has thrown herself into her work. When asked by Marie Claire if she's begun dating again, her demeanor shifts abruptly. "Honestly, I'm just going through a divorce, so I don't really think that's something I want to get into now." Adding that she hasn't even had a day off in two months, Deschanel says, "I don't have time to date. I literally — don't — have — time."
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