Jump to: Spoilers (7)
Every scene is rehearsed with the actors improvising things to make it funnier if possible. This whole process is observed by the writers, who take notes of the improvisations they feel work and incorporated to the shooting scripts.
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During her acceptance speech during The 65th Primetime Emmy Awards (2013) Julia Louis-Dreyfus was accompanied on stage by Tony Hale. When they stood on stage together as Louis-Dreyfus gave her speech, Hale pretended to feed her lines, just as he does on the show, playing her obsequious personal assistant.
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Julia Louis-Dreyfus offered British actress Sally Phillips a recurring guest part as the Finnish Prime Minister, as she is a big fan of Phillips' sketch show Smack the Pony (1999).
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Julia Louis-Dreyfus suggested using the twitch of the eye she knew how to do for comedic purposes whenever the writers thought it could work.
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No real-life contemporary politician appears or are mentioned on the show.
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Armando Iannucci created the character of Tom James for Hugh Laurie after learning he was a fan of the show.
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Selina wears red in the first scene of every first episode of each season.
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In the words of star Julia Louis-Dreyfus, shortly after the writers invented "Continuity with Change" as "the most empty, banal, moronic political slogan we could come up with", Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull actually used the phrase "Continuity and Change" as a campaign motto.
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Anna Chlumsky didn't have to go through the audition process because she had previously worked with Armando Iannucci on In the Loop (2009).
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On July 14, 2016, Peter MacNicol (who plays Jeff Kane) was Emmy-nominated in the outstanding guest actor in a comedy series category for his role on Veep. However, less than a week later, a Hollywood Reporter article reported that his nomination was rescinded when the Academy of Television and Arts and Sciences, the body that awards the Emmys, determined that MacNicol had appeared on too many episodes in one season (5 out of a total of 10) to be considered eligible as a guest. The Academy's qualification for "guest" status rests on having appeared in fewer than 50% of a season's total episodes. The statement from the Academy to the Hollywood Reporter read: "Upon review of the Guest Actor in a Comedy Series category, the Television Academy has determined that Peter MacNicol unfortunately exceeds the number of episodes permissible for inclusion in that category. HBO's guest actor entry for Peter MacNicol was accurate at the time of the submission deadline, but he was subsequently included in an additional Veep episode. Unfortunately, that additional appearance places him in 50% of the season's episodes and makes him no longer eligible to compete in the guest actor category. This decision is in no way a diminishment of Mr. MacNicol's stellar performance on this season of Veep. A new nominee for Guest Actor in a Comedy Series will be announced shortly." That fifth episode was Veep: Kissing Your Sister (2016), in which MacNichol appeared for about ten seconds. The Academy also specified that the new nominee would be the actor who originally won the next-highest number of votes without actually being nominated. That actor turned out to be Peter Scolari, who was nominated for his guest role on Girls (2012). On September 10, 2016, Peter Scolari actually won that Emmy.
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Julia Louis-Dreyfus was personally involved in the selection of David Mandel as the successor of Armando Iannucci as the show's showrunner for season 5.
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In preparation for the series, Armando Iannucci undertook extensive reading on American political history, including The Years of Lyndon Johnson by Robert A. Caro.
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Gary is from Birmingham, Alabama, which is also where Tony Hale, the actor who plays Gary, went to college (Hale attended Samford University).
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Is based in the same universe as the British BBC series The Thick of It (2005). 'Veep' is often regarded as its spin-off.
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In an episode of Seinfeld (1989) (Seinfeld: The Watch (1992)), Elaine (played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus) is asked by Joe Davola if he knows her from somewhere and she answers with a joke: that he probably recognizes her because her face is sculpted on Mount Rushmore, alongside the U.S. presidents, instead of Roosevelt's face. The poster for the fourth season of Veep, shows the face of Selina Meyer (who's also played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus), sculpted on Mount Rushmore, but it appears instead of Jefferson's face.
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The first time 'Veep' creator and head writer Armando Iannucci tested out his idea of a political satire in the USA was when he made a spin-off movie called In the Loop (2009) which featured several of his characters from his very popular British BBC series The Thick of It (2005) which is another political satire TV show set in the UK.
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One of the many HBO shows that are based off original British BBC shows
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Chris Addison (a director and producer of the show) was actually one of the actors in the British BBC seriesThe Thick of It (2005) that 'Veep' is set in the same world as and is written by the same man.
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The President of the United States is never seen onscreen nor ever even mentioned by name until the third season finale, when his name (Stuart Hughes) is revealed, though he remains unseen.
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According to creator Armando Iannucci, the show was intended from its inception to portray three distinct phases of Selina Meyer's career, first as a thankless vice president, then as an unpopular president, and finally as a failed former president.
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Neither of the two major US political parties, Democratic and Republican, are mentioned by name in the series. There are several strong indicators though that Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) is a Democrat, as her political leanings are center-left, and in Veep: Election Night (2015) the states she wins are colored blue, the color used by networks to indicate Democratic wins, as well as her winning states like California and New York which lean heavily towards Democrats.
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Timothy Simons stated that when his character Jonah Ryan runs for and is later elected to Congress, he based his characterization on US Senator Ted Cruz, calling both men "charmless," "graceless". "universally disliked", and "[having] fallen ass-backwards into some sort of power and until he's out, everybody just has to deal with him".
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In 2016, HBO launched a clearly satirical but nonetheless fairly realistic website promoting "Veep" character Jonah Ryan (Timothy Simons)'s campaign to be a U.S. Congressman from New Hampshire. The site contained several campaign advertisements, filmed in the show's subtly comic and awkward style (for example, a shot in which Jonah attempts to chop wood to demonstrate his "rugged individualism" cuts to an inset close-up in which someone else clearly had to do the actual chopping). The site also contained photo galleries, including one titled "Jonah Through the Years" that contained mainly childhood photos of Timothy Simons, the actor who plays Jonah. There was also a section of exterior links to real New Hampshire government, business, and tourism resources (such as the New Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, the New Hampshire Tourism Bureau, the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association) as well as the official website for Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, a band with no particular connection to New Hampshire.
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Selina says the first line of the series, and Mike says the final line.
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The fist and last episode of the series mentions a major event, Tom Hanks death. In the first episode, Mike suggests that Tom Hanks could die (and consume the news cycle), distracting people from Selina's use of an offensive slur. In the finale, Selina's death is announced and Tom Hanks has died.
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