Jason Segel and Mark Duplass open up about their experiences on set and lives in the entertainment industry. The duo play brothers who lead very different lives, yet end up needing each other as controversy arises.
Carroll News: In a previous interview, Ed Helms mentioned a lot of improvisation on set. How do you know when you nail a scene from an actor’s perspective?
Jason Segel: Sure. I don’t think you ever really know – you know what? I hate when I can tell an actor knows he’s nailed a scene. It’s like they – it’s my least favorite thing to like catch a little glimpse of when I’m watching a movie, to see someone be a little bit proud of themselves and you really can see it. And so I try not to think about that too much.
CN: Can you tell me what it’s been like working with your brother, Jay Duplass, on all of the different films that you have? And was this film any different for you two?
Mark Duplass: This is the largest budgeted film we had ever worked with before, so you know you always feel a certain sense of responsibility to make the movie good out of the more money people are putting into it. But in terms of, you know, me and Jay and our working relationship, our general feeling is that making a movie is really hard and making an entertaining film is almost impossible.
All of us collectively just feel like there’s strength in numbers by having two of us and whatever conflicts might arise between us are quickly dwarfed by the Herculean task of trying to make a feature film that doesn’t suck. So we quickly get over the squabbles and try to fight the good fight.
CN: How did you identify with the character of Jeff?
JS: I had a really unpleasant out-of-work period from like 22 to 25 where I was just waiting around, as well. As opposed to Jeff where he was waiting for a sign, I was like waiting to be cast, which I guess now there is a parallel to that because you’re considering someone casting you as a sign that you’re worthy and all that. I was smoking a fair amount of pot during that period as well.
I think I related back to this time where you’re kind of bopping around and you have a sense that you’re destiny is do something. Mine was to be an actor, but I was kind of waiting for the world to present that opportunity to me.
CN: What was your favorite part about working on this film?
MD: I got to shoot car chase scenes for the first time. You know my brother and I have made movies that are about relationships and people and the interpersonal dynamics between them for a long time. And this movie, I got to put a Porsche on the road and drive it fast and shoot it with Jason Segel sticking out of the sunroof. And so we – I think there was a lot of different fun stuff that we were not normally afforded in our previous films.
CN: Is there an interview question that you’re always asked that you’re just sick of answering?
JS: Yes. Mine doesn’t relate to this movie, but it’s been for the past eight years is, who is the mother?
CN: Because the movie takes place during one day, what sort of challenges did you face when it came to filming?
MD: I wish I could say there were tons of challenges. You know the one obvious one being that you know when you shoot a movie over 30 days that takes over one in the story, the skies and the backgrounds tend to change a lot and you have to deal with those logistical nightmares.
But to me the value in staying in that inherent pacing of that day and also from a practical level, the guys are in the same wardrobe the whole time and we could shuffle around scenes and change things around. It’s actually a blessing to me to kind of keep the story pretty finite in that way.
–Interview by Mitch Quataert