Why is Matthew Broderick in the doghouse?

'The View': Matthew Broderick on 'The View': Stars in Revival of 'Sylvia'
'The View': Matthew Broderick on 'The View': Stars in Revival of 'Sylvia'


Tony winner Annaleigh Ashford is all bark -- and lots of bite -- in the new production of "Sylvia," opening Oct. 27.

She plays Matthew Broderick's canine, who has a foul mouth, and even worse habits.

"There's a part in the play where I sniff a crotch. It's so crazy. Dogs do that because they're trying to figure out what's going on with you and how your day was. They want to see if you're OK. They love that smell too. They love the worst smells in the world," says Ashford.

Coincidentally, Broderick's wife, Sarah Jessica Parker, played the role of the pooch in 1995. Now, it's Ashford's turn to get up close and very personal with him.

"Yesterday, I patted Matthew's butt. He's got such a genuine warmth and vulnerability and a childlike energy about him. He makes me laugh so hard, I can't look at him on stage," she says.

Ashford has had quite a run herself. She won her Tony for the revival of "You Can't Take it With You," and she plays Sarah Silverman's lover Betty Dimello on Showtime's acclaimed "Masters of Sex," which returns for a fourth season next year. And refreshingly, she takes nothing for granted.

"I'm so grateful that I still have a job. We're just telling stories. We're not doing brain surgery," says Ashford. "Having a live audience is a rare and magical gift. Broadway is the peak of that art form."

She went to dog training classes all summer with her own pet, Gracie, and read nine books about canines. Her two favorites: "Animals in Translation" and "The Other End of the Leash."

"Thank god that I have a dog. This morning, I said to my husband that she's really afraid of cats. There's a scene where I see a cat and I cuss it out. I have a potty mouth. I'm very sassy. When I go into heat, I'm a full-on bitch," she says. "And then he gets me spayed."

Originally published