Juno Interviews - Director Jason Reitman and the Juno Cast
How many screenplays has Jason Reitman read that stopped him in his tracks?
How did you find this script?
Jason Reitman: "A good friend called me one night and said, 'You've got to read this script, Juno.' I opened the envelope and started reading the script. I was on like page 20 when I realized I'm still standing in my kitchen."
Does that happen often? I would suppose not.
Jason Reitman: "No. I've read about five screenplays in my life that stopped me in my tracks and made me say, 'I don't want to write my next movie. I'd rather do this.'"
And this cast is incredible. Did you know it was going to click like that?
Jason Reitman: "No, I got really lucky. I got lucky with this cast. I mean, I knew once I got to the set it was going to be amazing but I didn't know I was going to get these kinds of people."
And for the film to be embraced by not just art houses, huge audiences are going out and seeing it
Jason Reitman: "Yeah, we're going to be the number two movie this weekend."
Isn't that incredible? Did you ever expect that?
Jason Reitman: "No, of course not. You know, I like to make small, personal movies. I like to make movies that are accessible and audience-friendly, but I certainly never think of them as films that are going to do crazy dollars. And the idea that people are seeing this in the way that they are, the fact that we're number one in small mid-western towns that I've never been to Look, the reason why you become a filmmaker is because you like telling stories. You want to tell stories to as many people as possible, and the fact that this many people are seeing the story that I've told, it's the most wonderful feeling on earth."
Are you setting the bar super high for yourself with this and Thank You for Smoking?
Jason Reitman: "Oh this is my retirement."
Jason Reitman: "Yep."
So you're done after this? You don't have to do anything else?
Jason Reitman: "Good night."
There's no way you could leave it behind.
Jason Reitman: "You know, I grew up the son of a filmmaker so I realize that every movie is different and everything is going to be thought of in a different way, all good movies and bad movies and movies that people love and movies that people hate. Right now I happen to have made one that people seem to like and I'm trying to enjoy every second of it."
A couple that people like not just one.
Jason Reitman: "A few people a few people. The Palm Springs folks love it."
Ellen Page: "Miss Sunshine was one of those smaller movies that really resonated with a lot of people. It feels like I guess Juno's kind of doing the same thing. So it's lovely to be recognized alongside Little Miss Sunshine."
So you had four movies this year. Are you going to be just as busy [in 2008]?
Jason Bateman: "Hopefully, yeah. I'll do what they ask me to do."
And you've got Hancock coming up?
Jason Bateman: "Yeah."
That's a totally different type of character from what you've played before, right?
Jason Bateman: "No, not really. I mean, yeah, he's just a sort of a publicist who's a little sort of nervous, I guess. I don't know."
But it's opposite a guy who's a superhero and you haven't done a superhero movie before.
Jason Bateman: "That's true. That's true."
You're reuniting with Jason Reitman for this. What's so good about him as a director?
JK Simmons: "Well everything. You talk about what you would like to have in a director and it's intellect and vision and taste, and he brings all of that. He also brings an incredible visual sense which people underestimate about him. He understands everything about acting, the script obviously. He's the full package and really just a nice guy who makes the set a really fun place to hang out. And when you have a director like that and producers like that, it all trickles down. You tend to have a crew and other actors and everybody who's not only really good at what they do, but just fun people to hang out with all day."
So you made him say that his next film and his next film you're going to be a part of?
JK Simmons: "We have it I think it's been on film that he has said JK Simmons is now going to be in every film he ever directs. I think we have him on film saying that."