How Zooey Has Filled Her 'New Girl' Hiatus

She's been missing from the loft for a whopping four episodes so far, so I have to ask, what is Zooey Deschanel doing while New Girl is missing Jess? She was written out of several episodes to accommodate her maternity leave, and Transformers star Megan Fox was cast in a four-episode arc to help fill the void. Short answer? Well, she's back to shooting New Girl, of course!

Long answer? The new mom has been very, very busy since her adorably named daughter, Elsie Otter Pechenik, was born in August. She's already been spotted on set a few times after returning from her maternity leave this winter — perhaps most notably when Just Jared reported that she was seen kissing former co-star David Walton, aka Jess' old flame, the adorable pediatrician Dr. Sam, who TVLine reported is returning for a multiple-episode arc. She also would have returned while Fox was on set to film an episode together, as showrunner Liz Meriwether told Hitfix that Jess and Reagan will appear in an episode together. That means there's a lot to look forward to when Deschanel finally returns to New Girl on March 8.

In addition to her filming schedule, though, Deschanel has pretty much been everywhere. She recently attended Vanity Fair's famous Oscar after party alongside her husband, producer Jacob Pechenik.

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Plus, Deschanel has been spending some time on her film career. In the fall, her new film Rock the Kasbah, which also starred Bill Murray came out, and she also recently starred alongside Star Trek's Anton Yelchin in The Driftless Area, a neo-noir drama-comedy. The indie feature is set for an April release, so we'll (hopefully) be seeing the ever-stylish Deschanel walk a few more red carpets for the film soon.

So even in her New Girl absence, Deschanel has been keeping majorly busy. Still, I'm already excited to see her in next week's episode. Funnily enough, she's been gone for less episodes than Nick's been drunk in, but it still feels like a long time.