Mindy Kaling Talks Her “Ass-Grabbing” Mindy Project Kiss With Chris Messina, Compares It to Jim And Pam on The Office

Mindy Kaling at ELLE's Annual Women in Television Celebration
Mindy Kaling talked to Us Weekly about the bombshell on The Mindy Project's season finale at the Elle Women in Television event on Jan. 22. Angela Weiss/Getty Images

On Tuesday night, The Mindy Project dropped a major bombshell for its winter finale episode, “Desert.” [WARNING: Major spoilers ahead.] After two seasons of building up sexual tension between Mindy Lahiri (star and creator Mindy Kaling) and Danny Castellano (Chris Messina), the show finally delivered a raunchy makeout session between the two, during a flight from Los Angeles to New York. 

Mindy Kaling spoke with Us Weekly about the episode and that “ass-grabbing” kiss at the Elle Women in Television event on Jan. 22.

Kaling, 34, argued to Us that Mindy and Danny’s onscreen lip-lock was much more passionate than another very famous sitcom smooch.

“I was in The Office when Jim and Pam kissed, and that was a very chaste, romantic kiss,” she told Us. “And this was, like there was sexual tension building up, and this was it exploding. I thought while the episode had romantic parts to it, but I thought the kiss was actually more of like a makeout.”

Chris Messina and Mindy Kaling - The Mindy Project
Mindy (Mindy Kaling) and Danny (Chris Messina) makeout in The Mindy Project winter finale “Desert.”

The former star of and writer for The Office continued to compare her character’s highly-anticipated hook up to the now-ended NBC comedy’s popular couple, Jim Halpert (John Krasinski) and Pam Beesly (Jenna Fischer). 

“They’re much older than Jim and Pam were,” Kaling said of the Mindy Project leads. “It’s much more like an expression of that than it was like a romantic kiss.”

And though the makeout session was definitely a longtime coming, many fans are excited and slightly nervous about where the show will go after reaching such a satisfying climax. 

“Well, the good thing about them is the kiss can go so many ways,” Kaling said. “Because it was more of like a frantic makeout, because it was more of an expression of lust than romance, those are the kind of things that people often regret. So I feel like that left it open in a lot of ways for us. But in the first episode back, it deals with it in such a funny way that I’m just excited for you guys to see it.”

Chris Messina and Mindy Kaling - The Mindy Project
Danny (Chris Messina) and Mindy (Mindy Kaling) in The Mindy Project’s winter finale “Desert.” Jordin Althaus/FOX

And speaking of sexual tension, the Fox star recently had a swoon-worthy moment of her own in real life when she sat next to A-Lister Brad Pitt (his fiancee Angelina Jolie was a no-show) at the SAG Awards on Saturday, Jan. 18. 

“For whatever reason, I was sitting next to Matt Damon and Brad Pitt,” she revealed. “I was like in the Ocean’s Eleven reunion section. I felt like people just thought I was like Brad Pitt’s publicist or something.”

And when Pitt’s sexy new hairdo blocked Kaling’s view of the stage, she didn’t ask him to move, but rather soaked it all in. 

“I was staring at the back of that sexy hair cut he has,” she said. “So I was staring at the back of his long, beautiful neck. It was amazing. It was the best night of my life.” 

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