Bill Hader Exclusive: The To Do List Interview

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Bill Hader talks exclusively with Movie Fanatic about his latest role in the comedy The To Do List. He also talks about what types of films he'll be doing now that he's left SNL.

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The To Do List
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Interviewer: I've got to start with you, Scott. When we first heard your name, before we even saw you, that was kind of like "Wow, okay, this is going to be some sort of character." When you read the script and you saw your name, what did you think? Scott Porter: I mean, Maggie is so good at setting not only the place of this particular film, like putting it in Boise, putting in [inaudible 0:00:19], you know exactly what you're getting into, and what I saw in my head is exactly what Maggie had seen. She's so good at that, but the characters were so well outlined, too. Just from the name, I kind of already had an idea of this guy, and then the words [inaudible 0:00:35] lifeguard go together like twigs and berries. Interviewer: I know. It's amazing. Scott: Yeah, I knew exactly where she was coming from with this guy, and I was super excited to play the cool rock god. Interviewer: Oh, yeah. And, Bill, those of us that are married know that the wives are usually the bosses, right? Bill Hader: Yeah. Interviewer: In this situation, she really was your boss. Bill: Yeah, she was my boss, yeah. Interviewer: What was that like working for her? Obviously she's such a visionary, such a talent, but [inaudible 0:01:04] Bill: Great. It was awesome. I mean, she's so very clear in what she wants, but at the same time, she's very good at fame. She really respects actors, and she's kind of in awe of it. She's very in awe of what they can do and stuff, so she wants to kind of just create an environment where you can do your thing. So it's never like, "I need it like this." It was, "Yeah, whatever, surprise me." She's a great audience. She laughs a lot. She's always enjoying herself. Interviewer: And no matter the core subject matter or whatever it is, it seems like audiences never tire of the coming of age comedy. Why do you think that is? Bill: It's just somebody everybody can relate to. I mean, it's something you can relate to, but also there's a lot of comedy fodder to have in those years, especially looking back. You can always look back at that stuff and go, "Oh, man, geez, I can relate to this, and I was so stupid about this." Interviewer: Yeah. Scott: Sex is a rite of passage. Bill: Yeah. Scott: Basically, and everybody wants to attain it, everybody wants to have it happen, and then for the rest of your life you joke about just how terrible that first time was. Interviewer: Yeah. Scott: Rarely is it the right situation. Rarely is it the perfect circumstance. So this film we definitely go far left of center of that, and it's fun. Interviewer: And, Bill, forging quite a career for yourself on film, and I've just been really impressed with what you've done so far. Bill: Oh, thank you. Interviewer: What do you kind of seek to do? You also hope to have drama coming your way, or just the world's your oyster right now? Bill: Oh, thank you. I did a film with Kristen Wiig called "The Skeleton Twins" that the Duplass brothers produced. This great guy, Craig Johnson, wrote and directed. That's a drama, it's very much a drama. And it has some comedy elements to it, and that was great. It was so much fun working with Kristen. We played twins in it. Interviewer: Oh, my goodness. Bill: Then I did another movie that was a similar thing. It was actually two movies called "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby." This guy, Ned Benson, directed it with James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain. They're a couple who have this really horrible thing happen to them. There's a tragedy in their relationship, and they split up. One whole movie is his point of view of what happened, and a whole other movie is her point of view. Interviewer: Oh, my goodness. Bill: So his point of view is all shot in kind of cold and still colors, and hers is hand held. It was very bright and stuff. So you would shoot a scene for his version, and then they would say, "Okay, now we're doing her version," switch the cameras up and everything, put me in a new wardrobe, and then you'd shoot the same scene, but you would approximate the dialog a little bit. So you'll see both movies, and then you'll go, "Oh, no, this is the scene from the first movie. She just remembered it this way, but he remembered it this way." It's really cool. Interviewer: Oh, my goodness. Bill: Yeah, that's a great... Viola Davis, William Hurt, tons of great people on that. Inteviewer: Well, that had to be quite a learning experience, too, I would think. Bill: Yeah, that was great. I mean, I really have been enjoying doing that, so I'd like to do some more of that. Then I also do this movie, "Clear History," with Larry David. That will be fun.

The To Do List Review

The To Do List is out now on DVD and Blu-Ray and marks a coming out party for two talented women without whom this movie would not be as...

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