Two years earlier, before Bell's career had taken off, she'd starred in Pulse, whose 11 percent Rotten Tomatoes rating tells you everything you need to know about its story of a ghost virus that infects computers, televisions, and phones. The will to live is sucked out of tech users, and eventually, everyone turns into piles of black ash. Because maybe technology takes away our humanity. Do you get it? Do you get the metaphor?
Anyway, Bell assumed that the Sarah Marshall scene was a shot at her potboiler, and she was worried that it would cause problems if she were to be seen as mocking her last movie. But Segel, Sarah Marshall's writer, insisted that he'd never seen Pulse, because why on Earth would he have, and that he didn't even know Bell was in it. He had just tried to think of the dumbest movie premise he could, and killer cellphones fit the bill.
We're gonna go ahead and agree with him on that.
Less amusingly, Bell also had to act out a scene in which she learns that the TV show she stars in has been canceled... a day after Bell learned that the real TV show she really starred in, Veronica Mars, had been axed. She said she "poured a lot of emotional truth" into that scene, which we assume is actor code for hangover rage.