Exclusive: Michael Pena Talks 30 MINUTES OR LESS, TOWER HEIST, END OF WATCH, GANGSTER SQUAD and Doing More Comedies at Comic-Con

     July 27, 2011

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When I sat down with Michael Pena at Comic-Con a few days ago, the first thing I told him was he needs to do more comedies.  Trust me, after you guys see 30 Minutes or Less, you’re going to agree with me, because Pena steals every scene he’s in.  While I thought Pena was awesome in Observe and Report and on the second season of Eastbound & Down, it’s his work as a hitman named Chango that proves he’s ready to carry a movie.  Thankfully, when I brought up doing more comedies, Pena said that’s his plan.  Which makes me very happy.

During the interview we also talked about how he prepares for doing comedies (explains how he looks at documentaries and real people for inspiration for his characters), what was it like to work with Eddie Murphy on Tower Heist, talks about End of Watch with Jake Gyllenhaal and describes their ride-along with a police officer where the perpetrator was shot in the face, Gangster Squad, and he also talks about working with director Ruben Fleischer on 30 Minutes or Less and then Fleischer crashes the interview.  Hit the jump to watch.

Michael Pena Time Index

  • :14 After stealing his scenes in 30 Minutes or Less, what’s it gonna take for him to be a lead in a comedy?
  • 1:42 How is preparing for a comedy different from preparing for a drama?
  • 2:39 Talks about the approach to his character in Observe and Report.
  • 3:51 Explains how he looks at documentaries and real people for inspiration for his characters.
  • 5:17 Talks about working with director Ruben Fleischer on 30 Minutes or Less and Gangster Squad and then Fleischer crashes the interview.
  • 6:46 What it was like to work with Eddie Murphy on Tower Heist.
  • 7:40 Talks about End of Watch with Jake Gyllenhaal. Describes their ride-along with a police officer where the perpetrator was shot in the face.
  • 9:54 Future projects beyond Gangster Squad.

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