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Max Greenfield on "New Girl," future of Cece and Schmidt

Actor who plays Schmidt on the Fox sitcom tells CBS News' Lauren Moraski about his favorite episode, what he has in common with his character and the series' future
Max Greenfield talks "New Girl" 03:34

Max Greenfield and the rest of the "New Girl" gang recently received some very good news: The Fox sitcom has been picked up for a fifth season.

Hearing the news was, of course, great, but perhaps a little anti-climactic when it came time to celebrate, though.

"We usually find out these things while we're working. So we'll usually be on set, and they'll be like, 'You've been picked up!' and we're like, "Yes! OK.' Then you shoot another scene," Greenfield said with a laugh.

In other words, it's busy on the set of "New Girl," which co-stars Zooey Deschanel, Jake Johnson, Hannah Simone and Lamorne Morris, along with Damon Wayans Jr. (who's exiting after this season).

Greenfield plays Schmidt, one of the roommates at the Los Angeles-area loft. He's the most uptight one of the group, obsessed with keeping the apartment clean and very concerned about his appearance.

And now we know what may have contributed to those obsessive tendencies. Last week, viewers got the chance to meet Schmidt's mom for the first time. In town from Long Island, his mother, played by "Saturday Night Live" alum Nora Dunn, comes off as quite overbearing, at one point forcing Schmidt to wear a new sweater and hat she bought him -- right on the spot, while they're out to lunch.

"I was so excited that Nora Dunn came on to play Schmidt's mom. I couldn't think of better casting," Greenfield, 34, said. "I was a huge 'SNL' fan -- still a huge "SNL" fan." (Greenfield was such a fan of the NBC sketch comedy show growing up that he had an "SNL"-themed bar mitzvah.)

"So, there were moments on the set where I'd be looking at Nora Dunn and be like, 'This is the best!'" he said.

Schmidt's love life has also been in the spotlight this season as things pick up with local politician Fawn Moscato (Zoe Lister-Jones), just as ex-girlfriend Cece (Simone) realizes she still has strong, lingering feelings for him.

When asked what will become of Cece and Schimdt, Greenfield said to expect a "big moment" at the end of the season between the on-again, off-again couple.

Cece (Hannah Simone) tries to hide her feelings for Schmidt (Max Greenfield) in the "Oregon" episode of "New Girl." Fox

Aside from that, viewers can expect more fun and drama in the loft. Greenfield's Schmidt character is definitely familiar with apartment-living -- having moved in and out of "4D" on "New Girl."

But in real life, the only "roommates" Greenfield has are his wife, Tess Sanchez, and their daughter. Not too long ago, he and his wife were on the hunt for a new place after moving into a home that...well, didn't quite work.

"We lived in a place a few years ago and there were no electrical outlets. We liked it because it was so big --- but you don't think about certain things when you move into a place," said Greenfield, who recently partnered with the real estate site Trulia to help launch the company's new collaborative home search boards. Greenfield said the tool can be a big help while house hunting.

"You can create with people who you're renting a home with -- whether it's your roommate or your spouse. It's a good way to go back and forth with someone about what your wants are and what your discoveries are while you're on Trulia, which I think makes the whole process more fun," said Greenfield.

Although he's been busy on the "New Girl" set, Greenfield found time to film the new movie, "Hello, My Name Is Doris," which recently premiered at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. In it, Greenfield plays Sally Field's younger love interest -- a "dream" role, he says.

Sally Field and Max Greenfield attend the " Hello, My Name is Doris" after-party during SXSW on March 14, 2015, in Austin, Texas. Natalie Cass/Getty Images

Watch the video above to find out Greenfield's favorite "New Girl" episode and what it was like to share the big screen with Sally Field.

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