That’s right! The much kept secret and highly anticipated sequel to Anchorman has been a marketing juggernaut. If you thought Ron Burgundy was already a household name, just wait until you see this film. I was able to see a screening of it and let me tell you, it’s epic! Read my review here.
We all know there is no ‘I’ in ‘TEAM’ (although Ron Burgundy would argue otherwise), so we got a chance to talk to the rest of the news crew, Paul Rudd (Brian Fantana) and Steve Carell (Brick Tamland). (*Disclaimer: I did edit out all of the laughter, because believe me, there was a lot)
Hey guys, I just was wondering what aspect of your characters do you love the most.
Steve Carell: Boy, I love the innate intelligence of Brick. He’s sort of the counter-intuitive quality of his character, I think, is what appeals to me.
Paul Rudd: And as far as Brian goes, I think I like his musky sexualized idiocy.
That’s great! So you guys – you guys are obviously at a point in your career where you can choose what projects you want to work on. So I was wondering what is about “Anchorman” that made you want to revisit it?
Paul Rudd: Oh man, for me, mainly it was like working with these guys again who I love. And, you know, it was such a blast doing the first one that I want – I would jump at the chance to come back and beat a dead horse.
Steve Carell: I think we all felt exactly that same way. We all just wanted to do it for the sake of doing it, and I think we all would have done it in a vacuum. Even if there was no film and any camera, we would have come back and done it, because it’s so much fun.
Paul, your character uses his cologne cabinet in the first movie and his Jimmy cabinet in the upcoming movie to not-so successfully seduce women. And Steve, your character has trouble putting a sentence together around women. So I’m wondering what advice you guys would give to guys trying to pick up girls.
Steve Carell: If I could be a little more specific, Brick has trouble putting a sentence together around anything, regardless of their sex. What sort of advice the character could give to men in terms of the ladies? Hmmmm…
Paul Rudd: I would say to guys, drop the cologne. No one likes it. Use your own natural…
Steve Carell: … Musk.
Paul Rudd: Your own natural musk which will bring the ladies in in busloads.
Steve Carell: I would say you have to listen. You have to open your heart and open your ear and you have to listen and appreciate the person that you’re with.
Paul Rudd: Yes, you’re right, Steve. It’s kind of all about communication.
Steve Carell: It’s all about communication, Paul.
So there’s a lot of buzz about some big name cameos going down in this movie, such as Kanye, Drake, Sacha Baron Cohen, etc. How do you go about recruiting people for this?
Steve Carell: All of those people that you said are actually not in the movie.
Are you lying or is that true?
Steve Carell: I don’t know. Am I?
I don’t know. You guys have been so secretive about the movie.
Steve Carell: I don’t know.
Paul Rudd: Yes, you just have to see it.
Oh come on. Is there anything you can give me that I can tell our readers about the movie or you’re just going to keep it close-lipped?
Steve Carell: Ok, well, I think people were sort of calling Adam [McKay] and Will [Ferrell] to get into the movie. I don’t think there was much arm-bending to get people in, and I think it was the same as the first one. You know, all those cameos that we had and the big fight scene in the first one, people just wanted to be a part of the silliness. So I think the same holds true for this one.
Paul Rudd: I also think a lot of people like Adam and Will, and we all feel lucky enough to be in their orbit.
Very cool. Oh, Paul, by the way, I just saw ‘Halloween – The Curse of Michael Myers’ last night, and you were great in it, just wanted to say. It was on last night.
Paul Rudd: It was on last night. I got into bed and I started – and my wife said, “Look what’s on.” And we started watching it, and I said, “Turn it off. Turn it off.”
I saw that this – originally, it was pitched to be a play on Broadway for the sequel. And I was wondering what you thought would’ve been the best part about seeing your characters on the stage.
Paul Rudd: That’s great. Yes, we were going to – it was a musical, right?
Steve Carell: Yes. That was the part I was excited about, was the fact that at any given moment, the characters could just break into song. The idea of that happening was just great. I also liked the idea that there were, at that point in time, enough people had been clamoring for an “Anchorman” sequel and the idea of doing it as a musical on Broadway just really, I thought, was funny and annoyed people. Clearly, not enough people felt the same way because it didn’t and will never happen.
Do you think your characters – like what the songs you think they would’ve sung? Like any name of the song, I guess, to sum it up? Just one song.
Steve Carell: I think I would’ve sung a song called Gravy.
Paul Rudd: And I would have sung 525,600 Minutes [“Seasons of Love” from RENT].
Recently, both of you have starred in some really great indie movies like, you know, Steve, you’re in the “Way, Way Back” and, Paul, in “Prince Avalanche.” So I was wondering what was it like to balance that with a bigger Hollywood blockbuster and sort of revisit “Anchorman”. It’s just such a ridiculous saga compared to the other movies you’ve been in recently.
Paul Rudd: It was a blast. It was a blast to kind of come back to this part, these guys, and these characters because, one, I mean, they were so fun to do the first time around and we all had such a great time. But, you know, part of the spirit of what happened on the first “Anchorman” was that it felt like an indie movie. It just felt like a very small kind of corky comedy that we thought was funny that did not seem particularly commercial, and that was kind of the way it was the first time around. And I think that spirit still existed this time around even though there were more eyes on us.
So you’re both naturally talented comedians. So how much of the jokes and gags are improvised?
Steve Carell: A lot of the script was in great shape. We did a table read of the script, obviously, before we shot and it was hilarious. So we had that as a starting point. But on any given day, we or Adam or Will would come up with as much material as was on the page. I mean, there were scenes that were supposed to be about a minute and a half that ended up being 10-minute scenes because people just kept running with it.
And Adam Mckay has such a fertile mind. He sits at the monitor in his little tent with a microphone and just throws ideas out. And, you know, you can pick and choose. You don’t have to say what he’s giving you. But invariably you want to because everything that he says is kind of golden. So, yes, I mean, there were just so many fertile minds working. We ended up with way more material than we needed.
You both have made your careers playing comedic, at times clearly strange characters, and which of the quotes from your many roles do fans repeat back to you most?
Steve Carell: I love lamp.
Paul Rudd: For me, it seems like it’s kind of “slappin da bass” now [from “I Love You, Man”]. The last few years, that seems to be the one maybe more than any others.
So I feel like we’ve really gotten to know each other over the last seven minutes, so I kind of wanted to kick things up a notch. Say I’m lying on a table naked, covered in sushi. Where do you start eating first and why?
Paul Rudd: What was the – what was the – wait, repeat the question. And after you repeat it, I’m going to ask you to repeat it again.
OK, take note. So say I’m lying on a table naked, covered in sushi. Where do you start eating first and why?
Steve Carell: Well, I’ll take a crack at this. The place I would start eating first is McDonald’s because I don’t – I don’t eat sushi. Unless you have some tempura like laying on your foot, I might…
Hey, I can get whatever you need.
Paul Rudd: Honest to god, I am not kidding here. The reason I asked you to repeat the question is because the first time I heard it, and I don’t know whether or not it was a problem with the connection, but I thought you said covered in feces. But sushi makes more sense.
So the first “Anchorman” came out almost a decade ago. How difficult was it to get back into character for this movie?
Paul Rudd: At times, it didn’t seem difficult at all, like I feel we know these characters pretty well. But I would say throughout the shoot, there were many moments where I thought, oh god, am I doing this right? I felt a little off track. But I couldn’t tell whether or not I was in my head and I actually did remember, or I was commenting on what I had done the first time.
Steve Carell: And the more lost I felt, the better that served me. The more out of sorts I felt, in general, the better I think that played into Brick. I am, as a human being, no smarter than I was 10 years ago, so that I haven’t improved as a human being. I haven’t evolved in any way. So that really helped me with Brick.
After watching the trailer, I’ve noticed that there are some crazy and hilarious scenes that we’re going to see in the movie, and I was wondering if you could tell us if there was a favorite scene that you guys shot or maybe one that you can’t wait for the viewers to see.
Steve Carell: Boy, there are a lot of them. There aren’t any specifics that I’d want to get into because trying to explain something always is a little difficult. Like I would come home from a day of shooting and try to explain to my wife something really funny that happened and it definitely loses something in the translation. But, yes, there’s so much more. You know, you look at the trailer and you think, wow, they put everything in that they could and that’s the entire movie. But there’s so much more than is in the trailer and funnier. So I’m kind of psyched about the whole thing.
Paul, I was wondering if we will see the return of the Sex Panther.
Paul Rudd: Well, I can’t really give it away. I don’t want to say anything whether it does or whether it doesn’t. I want people to have questions going into this. I want people to feel about this the way they feel about Lost in Translation, in a way. It’s like, remember, when Scarlett Johnson whispered into his ear and no one knows what she said. That’s the way I want people to fell, I want that level of frustration.
Steve Carell: Well, you know what she did say.
Paul Rudd: What? Is that a Sex Panther in your pocket or are you happy to see me? Yes, there you go. She called him a Sex Panther, didn’t she?
Steve Carell: She did.
Paul Rudd: Oh my god. Now the movie makes sense.
So what do you think about portraying the seemingly very serious job of news anchors in such a silly way?
Paul Rudd: I feel pretty good about it.
Steve Carell: I feel good too.
Paul Rudd: Sometimes I watch news anchors and I think they’re portraying themselves in a very silly way, much sillier than we could ever do.
Alright guys, thank you so much for your time. I’m sure this has only made people look forward to the movie even more.
Now to top it off, here is a video of the cast singing “Afternoon Delight” at the Sydney premiere. Don’t forget to make sure to see the film, which opens December 18th!