Andy Samberg On Set Interview – I LOVE YOU, MAN

     July 12, 2008

Written by Jonah Keel

Coming to theaters in the not too distant future is the comedy I LOVE YOU MAN. ILYM is… I-L-Y-M, I LOVE YOU MAN, don’t make me type it over and over! ILYM is a comedy about a guy: Paul Rudd who realizes, as he is about to get married, that he has no guy friends. In an effort to help him be more normal, his fiance: Rashida Jones sets up a series of hilarious play dates so her man can find guy friends. Along the way he runs into another guy: Jason Segel, and they become friends. Lou Ferrigno plays himself. JK Simmons plays the proud papa. Oh, and his brother: Andy Samberg is gay.

Anyway, here is the interview I did with Andy on the set. It was done in roundtable form…meaning it wasn’t just me…

Question: So, where do you keep the Emmy?

Andy Samberg: Uh, in my bed. It’s in my bed.

Q: Is it in a box?

Andy Samberg: It’s not in a box, no.

Q: Do you hug it?

Andy: Yeah, it’s like my security blanket.

Q: So tell us about your character, he sounds interesting.

Andy: God, I hope so….because he is a character in a movie. I am Paul Rudd’s younger brother, Robby. I like dudes, and I help him find friends.

Q: You’re a gay guy who likes straight men?

Andy: Yeah, that’s the gist.

Q: Thomas Lennon’s character, Doug, is he gay?

Andy: Yes.

Q: Does he know he is gay?

Andy: Yes.

Q: Is this the most amazing script you have ever read?

Andy: It’s like top thousand. Like, it’s in the top thousand scripts I’ve ever read. I’ve probably read like four hundred. No, it’s totally good. [John] Hamburg knows what he’s doing.

Q: Are you guys having a good time?

Andy: Yeah, it’s actually a great time. It’s a bunch of really goofy people—three dudes from ‘The State,’ two dudes from ‘Human Giant,’ Jane Curtain is here, JK Simmons. It’s rad. It’s a bunch of awesome people.

Q: Lou Ferrigno.

Andy: Lou Ferrigno. Lou Ferrigno gave me some workout advice.

Q: Start?

Andy: [Laughs] He’s like ‘Stop being less muscular than me.’ It’s going to take me awhile though. Yeah, he’s ripped. He’s a very nice guy.

Q: Is this the best year ever on Saturday Night Live?

Andy: Uh, for me. I’ve been having a great time. Although, we had the strike. But we came back with a vengeance. I’m very happy. I don’t have any way to gauge how the show is doing compared to other years when I’m there, because I’ve lost all perspective. But I think we are having a good time. I definitely like everyone I work with.

Q: Any ideas about what’s going to happen this Fall? Obviously there is the election…

Andy: Yeah, what’s going to happen in regards to what?

Q: Do you know any guest stars, any hosts?

Andy: I don’t know anything. It generally happens pretty close to the show. It’s actually live, so you get people showing up on Saturday and then they are like ‘And you are in, you are in the show. Walk out on stage…Paul McCartney’ and then he does. I’m guessing there will be a lot of politics, as we’ve been doing. I’ll have a lot to do with that. Everyone knows me as the ‘political guy.’ [Laughs]

Q: In terms of the digital shorts, they really took off and almost became the focus of the show for a while. Do you feel like, show to show, the pressure to keep topping it?

Andy: Not particularly, the thing about doing so many of them at this point, they are just like writing a sketch. It’s like, they aren’t all going to be ‘Dick in a Box’ It’s not going to happen. We try and just stay with what we have always done. Which is, if it is making each other laugh, go for it.

Q: Are you ever surprised when stuff sticks or misses, like stuff that you thought was going to be great?

Andy: Yeah, I guess. There are certain ones that I know I liked a lot, that weren’t necessarily huge but I know I liked them. I’m pretty happy with everything we have done.

Q: What’s next for you, feature wise?

Andy: Um, I don’t know. I swear, I don’t know. Talking about it, thinking about it.

Q: ‘Hot Rod 2’?

Andy: [Laughs] Yeah, I don’t think ‘Hot Rod 2’ is in the works. I don’t know if you guys check Box Office Mojo.

Q: But they made ‘Hot Rod’ underwear, man.

Andy: They did, upon my request.

Q: Are you wearing them?

Andy: I wear them everyday. It’s hard for me to let go. My two partners, Akiva and Jorma, we want to do another movie. It’s really, really tasking to try and do it while doing SNL, and unless they fire me I have another four years on my contract. I think, definitely doing ‘Hot Rod’ we learned a lot in terms of how much energy it takes, and we are going to make sure its something we are really excited about before we take that on again. Any cool stuff like this, like come work on a movie that I think is going to be cool and have a part that I like. I’ll do that do in the meantime.

Q: So you like playing the gay guy who’s into straight dudes?

Andy: Sure. I’m into playing any part that I think will get laughs.

Q: Overall, there is a lot of adlibbing here, has there been one day that has just been over the top or has it just been nonstop?

Andy: I think it’s been pretty much nonstop. Paul Rudd and Jason Segel are the two leads in the movie and they are like…rifters. They like messing around, and Hamburg, he writes great but he’s also super open-minded. If you have pitches, he’s all for it and he’ll sort it out in the editing room. So, it’s been pretty fun. It’s a lot of very silly, funny people.

Q: What about J.K. Simmons, is he pretty funny?

Andy: He’s hilarious. When I first read the script, I said that I was into the part of Robby and that I thought that the dad should be played by J.K. Simmons. When I met with John Hamburg and before I said that to him he was like ‘We are after J.K. Simmons for the part of the dad.’ I was like ‘Oh my god, that’s perfect.’ Because I had just seen ‘Juno’ and he was my favorite part of that movie. I saw those things working with him in that part, and I’m finding it very amusing.

Q: It seems almost as if the guys from ‘The State’ and the Judd Apatow group are becoming one massive improvisational comedy. I know that with SNL it makes it tough to keep getting out, but would you be interested in working with Judd and those guys?

Andy: Yeah, I’m into all of that. I’ve never worked with Judd but I’m obviously a fan of his stuff, particularly ‘Anchorman.’

Q: They are talking about a sequel. I don’t know if they are joking, but…

Andy: Yeah, that would be my dream come true. I love that movie. Bill Hader and I always talk about the climate in comedy right now, and that everyone is just kind of fans of each other. When I was growing up, I watched ‘The State.’ Being able to hang out with those dudes, it’s so awesome for me. For them it’s like ‘Oh, you are from SNL, we are all comedy guys.’ But for me it’s like ‘Ah! It’s the fucking State’ It’s a big deal. Also, I feel like ‘Superbad’ having Joe Lo Truglio in there or something, for people like us who are comedy nerds, it’s a super no-brainer.

Q: What’s interesting with ‘The State’ is that they were ahead of their time with their non-sequitur laden humor, now, that’s the popular type of comedy today.

Andy: Yeah…I don’t know. There is still a lot of stuff you can’t get away with in mainstream comedy. People aren’t as willing to go as surreal as you might think.

Q: You did end a film with a guy crapping his pants, as like the stinger of the film.

Andy: Well, it got made. I liked it, but it didn’t exactly break any records. But, you know, we are doing pretty well on DVD.

Q: Well, it doesn’t end with theatrical these days.

Andy: I think with ‘Hot Rod’ we knew what we were doing. We knew what we wanted to make and I think we made it. It’s a crazy comedy for people who like comedy. I’m totally happy with it.

Q: ‘Harold and Kumar’ didn’t do well in theaters but then on DVD it made a killing and they made a sequel to that.

Andy: Yeah, they did make a sequel. Yeah, awesomely. Who knows, I don’t think we are going to get the offer for ‘Hot Rod 2.’

Q: We just want to see more scenes of you dancing in a forest.

Andy: Well, that could be arranged for a small fee. I could do that right now. Bus everybody out to the forest.

Q: What was your favorite scene in ‘Iron Man?’

Andy: My favorite scene in ‘Iron Man?’ God, there were so many. Probably like, him talking to the robots. Just that run, and when he was building the suit.

Q: You didn’t see the movie, did you?

Andy: Nope. No interest.

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