Jason Segel Interview - Forgetting Sarah Marshall Movie
Jason Segel wrote and starred in 'Forgetting Sarah Marshall.'
What's it feel like to actually get your script done?
Jason Segel: "It's insane. I'd written a few things, you know, over the past 10 years or so but to have it made You know, I wrote the script in Hawaii and then we filmed in Hawaii for about four months. It kind of felt like I'd tricked everybody. It was really ridiculous. It was the best experience of my life. I felt very lucky."
How closely after you wrote the script did you actually stick to it?
Jason Segel: "Well, it's neat. The Apatow process is very cool. We shoot the script, obviously, a couple of times but then we let people go and do their thing. Someone asked me, 'Is it hard to hear people change your material?' It was the opposite. I felt honored to have someone like Russell (Brand) change my material."
Jason Segel: "Oh, he's the best. You should have seen his audition. The part was originally written to be like a proper British author, dressing like the Great Gatsby. And he came in looking much like he does today and it was clear I needed to rewrite the part for him because I wanted to work with him so badly. Between him and Kristen (Bell) and Mila (Kunis) and all this supporting cast, I just got very lucky."
You didn't make the ex out to be a villain like it is in most romantic comedies. Is that deliberate that you did that?
Jason Segel: "That was my goal. I felt like the movie is about that relationships are complicated, and the second you make someone the villain it becomes a much less interesting movie. Everyone has a perspective in a break-up, so I made a real effort for that with Kristen's character, Sarah Marshall. And also with Russell's character because it would be very easy to have him be the unlikable new boyfriend. I like the idea that he's a great guy and it's really hard to hate him because he's so pleasantly disconnected from reality."
How tough is it for you when you're acting to put aside the fact that you actually wrote this and to not think about what the other people are saying and doing?
Jason Segel: "Sure. When you're doing as much improv as we did on the set, you can't think of anything but be in the moment. I've learned that from Knocked Up and Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared with Judd, that at some point you need to arrive knowing what you're going to do so well that you can let it go when you're there. I think being underprepared would be the most difficult thing, because you'd be thinking about what your next line is or this or that. I had the luxury of having written it over a year so I knew I knew what I was doing. Letting go is the best part. It's actually the most liberating part."
You wrote yourself a part where you have to do dangerous things?
Jason Segel: "I did."
Why did you do that?
Jason Segel: "I like to challenge myself. I like to push myself as much as possible, and getting an opportunity like this is so rare I felt like I better pull out all the stops. Maybe I'll get another job someday."
Is there more writing? Do you have more scripts ready to go?
Jason Segel: "Yeah, yeah I do. I'm actually writing two scripts with Nick Stoller, the director. He and I have been friends for a long time so we another movie at Universal and then another very special project close to my heart that I can't really talk about but there are puppets involved."
Puppets? Like Team America-type puppets?
Jason Segel: "I can't tell you any more."