- Associated Press - Thursday, August 6, 2015

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) - Jamie Lee Curtis has a trick to not laughing while filming a scene for Fox’s new series “Scream Queens” no matter how funny the dialogue gets, particularly when it’s improvisation from Niecy Nash.

“Here is my secret,” she told TV critics Thursday. “I hold either a pushpin or a toothpick between my fingers and I push really hard during every scene.

“Watch my hand. My hand is below the frame and I don’t care what’s happening, whatever (Niecy) has thrown at me. I am squeezing a pushpin between my fingers to make it hurt really bad so that I will not laugh. And that is a testament to the writers, and it’s very, very, very funny, and the situations are crazy and that is my secret.”

It’s a tactic she’s used for years, and she jokes that Kevin Kline still won’t talk to her because she “ruined great takes” by laughing during their filming of the movie “A Fish Called Wanda.”

In “Scream Queens,” Curtis plays a college dean in Anywhere U.S.A., where a murderer is on the loose. Cast members include Emma Roberts, Lea Michele, Keke Palmer, Abigail Breslin, Ariana Grande and Nick Jonas.

The show is written by Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan, who haven’t told the cast who the killer is or if their characters will survive.

“When you’re making a horror show, you need that sense of fear and urgency in the characters,” Falchuk said. “They don’t know if this is the last time they’re gonna see the other person. They don’t know if they’re the killer. … If the actors know it tips it a little bit.”

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