Bret McKenzie Talks AUSTENLAND, THE HOBBIT, THE MUPPETS Sequel, the Flight of the Conchords Tour with Dave Chappelle, What He Collects, and Much More

     August 16, 2013

Bret-McKenzie-austenland-Fairy Tale Comedy Musical-interview-slice

Opening this weekend in limited release is director Jerusha Hess’ comedy AustenlandThe film stars Keri Russell as a woman in her 30s who is so obsessed with the Pride and Prejudice character Mr. Darcy that no real-life man can compare, and her love life pays the toll. She decides to spend her life savings on a trip to a Jane Austen-themed resort in England.  Once there, she quickly realizes that finding the perfect Regency-era gentleman may be much more of a challenge than she ever could have imagined.  The film also stars Jennifer Coolidge, Jane Seymour, Rupert Vansittart, James Callis, and Bret McKenzie as the male love interest.

At the recent Los Angeles press day, I landed an extended video interview with McKenzie.  During our wide-ranging conversation he talked about making Austenland, his Sundance experience, how it feels to be an Oscar winner (he won for writing a song for The Muppets movie), the upcoming Flight of the Conchords tour with Dave Chappelle, The Hobbit movies, what he collects, and more.  In addition, McKenzie talked about Muppets Most Wanted, the songs, if he has seen a rough cut, his relationship with Disney, and future projects – revealing he’s writing a fairy tale comedy musical similar to Labyrinth.   Hit the jump to watch.

austenland-keri-russell-bret-mckenzieBret McKenzie:

  • How it feels to be an Oscar-winner and how it affects him while writing the Muppets sequel soundtrack.
  • 2:00 – Talks about the Sundance experience for Austenland.
  • 2:50 – Talks about how he got involved with the project.
  • 4:00 – Not much changed from script to screen, but Jennifer Coolidge improvised a lot.
  • 6:30 – Rhys Darby from Flight of the Conchords is the actor best able to make McKenzie on set.
  • 7:50 – Plans for the comedy tour with Dave Chappelle.
  • 10:50 – McKenzie’s character is not in the Hobbit sequels.
  • muppets-most-wanted-ricky-gervais11:50 – He’s seen a rough cut of Muppets Most Wanted.  They’ll finish the songs after he returns from the tour.
  • 12:50 – There are about six or seven songs in the sequel.
  • 13:15 – Miss Piggy does a ballad.  Ricky Gervais does a song with Kermit.
  • 15:00 – There was more educational time on the first movie to learn the history of the Muppets and how they work.  The first one was more nostalgic.  The second is more of a caper.
  • 15:55 – McKenzie didn’t get to spend much time on set.
  • 16:30 – Estimates he has “half a dozen song ideas” that didn’t get used for The Muppets.
  • 17:10 – Talks about how a Muppets song comes together.
  • 18:20 – Talks about his relationship with Disney now.
  • 19:30 – McKenzie collects old keyboards.  The oldest is from the 1970s.
  • 20:55 – The Muppets post-production comes after the tour.  He’s also writing a fairy tale comedy musical similar to Labyrinth.



Around The Web

Latest News

Zack Snyder Defends MAN OF STEEL Ending; Teases Batman Connection and Brainiac

Ben Affleck reveals how the Metropolis destruction affected Bruce Wayne.

Friday Box Office: Holdovers Still in Charge as TERMINATOR GENISYS and MAGIC MIKE XXL Stumble into Holiday Frame

Despite solid Wednesday starts, this weekend’s two new releases will not overtake 'Inside Out’ and ‘Jurassic World’ over the July Fourth weekend.

Kevin Spacey & Adrien Brody Talk Directors, Collaboration at Jameson First Shot

The short film competition this weekend announced its three winners: Stephan Tempier, Mark Middlewick & Travis Calvert

Our Favorite “AMERICAN” Movies

With “American” in the title, it can’t be bad.

BLACK PANTHER: Ava DuVernay Passes on Directing the Marvel Film

The 'Selma' filmmaker says she and Marvel had different ideas about what a 'Black Panther' movie should be.

High-Res Presentation Reel Reveals the JOHN CARTER that Could Have Been

This actually looks awesome.

BATMAN V SUPERMAN Scenes Include a Rainy Rooftop Battle and Solemn Chats with Alfred

Get ready for some more crash-bang destruction, now with twice the superheroes!

Skydance CEO & COO David Ellison and Dana Goldberg and Director Alan Taylor Talk TERMINATOR GENISYS

The director and producers talk first cut, deleted scenes, what they learned from friends and family screenings, Easter eggs, and more.

Disney’s 9 Most Wicked Animated Villains

Haleigh, Matt, and Dave single out their picks for best Disney Animated villains, ranging from Snow White's Evil Queen to Hercules' sassy ruler of the Underworld.

New ANT-MAN Trailer Disses the Iron Man Armor

Hank Pym believes that a suit designed to make someone shrink down to the size of an ant isn't “cute technology”.

Page 1 of 4,02712345...102030...Last »
echo ' '; ?>