Aubrey Plaza has made a career out of playing strange and off-putting or awkward characters. And while the projects she picks don't always work, she nearly always shines in them.
Her next big project is one of the most high-profile on her resume as she'll headline the Child's Play remake that's coming out in June. Given her impending transition from snarky girl to horror movie mom, it seemed a good time to take a look back at some of her better roles. And if genre fans get lucky, after June, the list could need updating...
While the film itself is set up as a vehicle for Zac Efron and Adam Devine, its the supporting cast that really sell the parts that work. Aubrey Plaza and Anna Kendrick steal most every scene they're in from the guys by one-upping them at their own game and getting themselves a free trip to Hawaii.
Plaza's Tatiana owns Workaholics star Devine over and over again as he's convinced she's just a nice girl who teaches kids to read.
One of the stranger films that Aubrey Plaza has been a part of is the 2018 Jim Hosking crime/comedy An Evening with Beverly Luff Linn, which she headlines as Lulu Danger.
Joined in the cast by Matt Berry, Craig Robinson, Maria Bamford, and her Legion co-star Jemaine Clement, Plaza puts forth a pretty fitting performance for a movie this ridiculous and shines in the ugliest sweater you'll ever see.
At the height of Judd Apatow's success, he teamed with Adam Sandler to make Funny People, which, as it turned out, wasn't all that funny. But while it didn't exactly revitalize Sandler's film career in the way many thought it might, it did give Aubrey Plaza her first wide release big-screen role.
Premiering in July of 2009, just months after the start of Parks and Recreation, this was the first time most of us had ever seen Plaza, and she was a bright spot in an otherwise disappointing film.
It's the age-old story of the girl who became a lawyer but really wants to be a chef. Well, that's just one of the subplots anyway, but this film actually provided Aubrey something different to play than the mean girl in the group.
Described as "The Big Chill for Millenials," the film isn't nearly as bad as that makes it sound. Plaza's character Sarah and her friends from college all get together for the weekend following the attempted suicide of their friend Alex, and in the process iron out some old issues.
In Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, our Ms. Plaza plays Julie Powers, friend to Scott's sister Stacey (Anna Kendrick) and sage deliverer of wisdom and advice. Not that Scott wants or heeds said advice.
They hyper-intense and serious Julie drops in with perfect comic rhythm time and again, and does her best to warn Scott off of the illustrious Ramona Flowers and all the combat-baggage that follows her around. Of course, if Scott listened, there wouldn't have been much of a story left to tell.
After gaining some experience as a character who spent some time institutionalized in 2014's Ned Rifle, here Plaza really gets a chance to draw on that experience with Ingrid Thorburn. Initially, Ingrid Goes West seems to be a cautionary tale about the dangers of obsessive social media use, but then it morphs into something more when the other characters in the film seem to be acting just as fake as our lead.
Plaza's awkwardly out of place Ingrid is expertly crafted and really plays well off of the surrounding cast, especially Elizabeth Olsen, who's character - though a victim - is forced to face a hard truth about the lies she tells herself.
In The Legend of Korra, Plaza voices Eska, the daughter of Chief Unalaq, and twin sister to Desna.
The bossy and sardonic Eska provides Aubrey with another role she seems pitch perfect for. Eska and her brother, who are introduced at the beginning of book two, begin their arc as villains loyal to their father, but eventually, come around to join up with the Avatar and comedically torture Bolin throughout a rocky romance.
In what is certainly the most critically acclaimed film of her career, Plaza plays Darius Britt, a magazine intern who sets out on assignment to learn about a man who placed a curious ad in the paper.
"Wanted: Somebody to go back in time with me. This is not a joke. You'll get paid after we get back. Must bring your own weapons. Safety not guaranteed. I have only done this once before." Surrounded by an impressive cast and made for less than a million dollars, the film wound up a touching and heartfelt look at a man dealing with regret and fading dreams, and to whom Britt becomes an unlikely ally.
For six years Plaza starred on NBC's Parks and Recreation as April Ludgate, and it is here that most of the world learned who she was.
Starting out as an intern, and then the reluctant assistant to Ron Swanson, April eventually progresses into a much larger focus of the show - especially once she marries Andy Dwyer (Chris Pratt) and the duo become one of television's favorite couples.
For comic book fans, Aubrey Plaza probably wasn't what anyone had in mind when they thought about the Shadow King. But lucky for us all, Legion showrunner Noah Hawley saw the potential and together they hit it out of the park.
Once the reveal came in the show's first season, Plaza stole the next several episodes and became a highlight of an already stellar show. She's probably the best X-Villain since Ian McKellen's Magneto.