‘Game Night’ Directors on Making the Comedic Version of David Fincher’s ‘The Game’

     February 23, 2018


I’ve got a pretty simple question for you: do you like to laugh? If you answered yes, then I’m going to strongly recommend checking out directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein’s new film Game Night. From start to finish, I was laughing. And if you thought it was just me, last night we held a special early screening of Game Night at ArcLight Cinemas Hollywood as part of the Collider screening series and it played like the crowd was on laughing gas. Trust me, see this in a crowded theater and you’ll have a great time.


Image via Warner Bros.

If you haven’t seen the trailers (which, thankfully, don’t spoil all the jokes or twists and turns), the film stars Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams as a couple whose weekly game night gets kicked up a couple thousand notches when Bateman’s brother (played by Kyle Chandler) arranges a murder mystery party that quickly gets out of hand. Think of Game Night as a comedic version of David Fincher’s The Game. The film also stars Billy MagnussenSharon HorganLamorne MorrisKylie BunburyChelsea PerettiDanny HustonMichael C. Hall and an amazing Jesse Plemons, who plays a police officer that lives next door to Bateman and McAdams.

Last week, at the Los Angeles press day, I got to sit down with John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein for an exclusive video interview. They talked about how they got involved in Game Night, if the movie changed a lot during the development process, what they learned from test screenings, what they asked composer Cliff Martinez to do with the score, what’s Jason Bateman’s secret to making people like him whether he’s playing an asshole or a nice guy, and so much more. In addition, they talked about how they got involved in The Flash movie, Flashpoint, working in the Hasbro writers room on projects like M.A.S.K. and Rom, and how they’re currently writing and producing an adaptation of The Vacation Guide to the Solar System which is a science-based family adventure movie in the tone of Jurassic Park. They say the film will be about space tourism 50 years from now and the tone will be realistic like Gravity and The Martian.


Image via Warner Bros.

Check out what John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein had to say in the player above and below is exactly what we talked about.

John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein:

  • How they made a comedy that’s also a thriller. Taking inspiration from David Fincher’s The Game
  • How the most challenging part of making the movie was the tone.
  • What did they learn from test screenings? They talk about how the first time they tested it they had a pretty scary version.
  • They talk about working with composer Cliff Martinez and asking him to have it sound like a thriller and not a comedy.
  • How much changed as a result of test screenings and friends and family screenings?
  • What is Jason Bateman’s secret to being able to play an asshole as well as a nice guy and people like him no matter what.
  • How did they get involved in directing Game Night?
  • They talk about filming the very funny group scenes and how much was improv?
  • How the film is 90 minutes. Did they have a longer cut?
  • After the success of Spider-Man: Homecoming did they feel like they wanted to spend more time in the superhero genre and what did they learn from writing the film?
  • How did they get involved in The Flash movie Flashpoint?
  • How they are still negotiating with the studio to direct Flashpoint.
  • How they worked in the Hasbro writers room on projects like M.A.S.K. and Rom.
  • How they are also writing and producing an adaptation of The Vacation Guide to the Solar System which is a science based family adventure movie in the tone of Jurassic Park. It’s space tourism 50 years from now and what that might be like. They say the tone will be realistic like Gravity and The Martian.

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