Melissa McCarthy plays a smart, fun teacher looking for love on CBS' "Mike & Molly," premiering Monday, Sept. 20.
The well-written comedy has fat jokes because Mike (Billy Gardell) and Molly (McCarthy) are obese, but the show goes beyond the obvious, which is what attracted McCarthy.
"I wouldn't have done this 10 years ago," she says. "I would have been too insecure. Two kids later, your priorities change."
After years of steady TV work, McCarthy was content to not work and putter around houses -- she loves buying, fixing and selling houses. With a toddler, a baby, a husband and a dog, McCarthy wasn't exactly idle.
"I have these two little creatures; I want to stay home," she says. "It would have to be a minute away, hardly any hours, and this came up."
She was so enchanted with the script that she wanted to meet with the producers, and when the studio was a 2-minute bike ride from her house, that clinched it.
"I just think, boy, the heart of this, and the humor, I buy it all," she says. "It had a heart. It's a little biting -- how family can be. Everybody loves each other. It's not all let's sit around and hug. Everybody is rooting for the other person. It just made me want to know them."
McCarthy has a knack for picking and helping to make hits, and for her, "Mike & Molly" has the same feel "Gilmore Girls" and "Samantha Who" did.
"They all had heart," she says. "I find it wonderfully uninteresting to see perfect and beautiful people. I don't like reality TV. I don't like to see the worst in people. I don't think I am above it. I like to watch flawed people just try to do the right thing."