Paul Rudd & Max Showalter parody Lily Tomlin & David O. Russell ‘I Heart Huckabees’ on-set blow-up
Whether you enjoyed or were appalled by the ugliness of the I Heart Huckabees on-set Battle of Nitwits between actress Lily Tomlin and director David O. Russell, you’ll most likely enjoy the parody enacted by Paul Rudd (in the Lily Tomlin role) and Max Showalter (in the David O. Russell role).
Showalter is quite funny as the emotionally troubled (i.e., mentally unbalanced), foul-mouthed director (or is he a talk-show host?) who keeps yelling at his whining star “you’re fucking grown up, then act like one!” – while he himself wreaks havoc on the set. As the star, Paul Rudd is equally funny, casually remarking, “We need to get insurance against the director!”
Now, having Max Showalter tell Rudd, “Like I need a fucking cunt bitch telling me how to do my job” doesn’t quite work for obvious reasons. Paul Rudd, after all, isn’t a woman like Lily Tomlin. But I assume that was one of those rare instances when the adapters of somebody else’s material felt the need to remain faithful to the original text. Or pretty close.
Lily Tomlin / David O. Russell I Heart Huckabees on-set blow-up
A little while ago, Whip It Out Comedy posted two video clips showing expletive-filled, behind-the-scenes battles between 1975 Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Lily Tomlin (Robert Altman’s Nashville) and David O. Russell during the making of Russell’s dreary I Heart Huckabees. (The clips have since been removed.) The 48-year-old Russell, in particular, has a reputation for being “difficult,” having reportedly gotten into a brawl with George Clooney during the making of The Three Kings.
One I Heart Huckabees clip, which manages to be even more unpleasant than the film itself, showed Lily Tomlin and David O. Russell shooting X-rated four-letter words at each other. That’s the on-set blow-up clip parodied by Max Showalter and Paul Rudd.
The other clip had Lily Tomlin, Dustin Hoffman, Isabelle Huppert, Mark Wahlberg, and Naomi Watts in a car, being directed by an off-camera David O. Russell. As in the other clip, Tomlin and Russell go for each other’s throats while Isabelle Huppert, looking bored out of her wits, adjusts her make-up. Nothing in I Heart Huckabees is nearly as entertaining as Huppert’s performance in that brief clip.
‘I Heart Huckabees’: Unfunny ‘existentialist comedy’
Anyhow, all that on-set nastiness may the reason David O. Russell’s “existentialist comedy” came out as an unfunny mess. In the cast: Jason Schwartzman, Mark Wahlberg, and…
- Best Actress Oscar nominee Naomi Watts (21 Grams, 2003).
- Best Actress Prix César winner Isabelle Huppert (La cérémonie, 1995).
- Two-time Oscar nominee Jude Law (as Best Supporting Actor for The Talented Mr. Ripley, 1999; as Best Actor for Cold Mountain, 2003).
- Two-time Best Actor Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman (Kramer vs. Kramer, 1979; Rain Man, 1988).
- Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Lily Tomlin (Nashville, 1975).
- Jason Schwartzman’s mother and two-time Oscar nominee Talia Shire (as Best Supporting Actress for The Godfather: Part II, 1974; as Best Actress for Rocky, 1976).
- Alfred Hitchcock leading lady Tippi Hedren (The Birds, Marnie).
And here’s wondering if the Ernst Lubitsch touch of warmth, sophistication, and wit found in movies such as The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg, Trouble in Paradise, The Merry Widow, and Ninotchka was ever accomplished in such a belligerent work environment.
Paul Rudd movies
Among the current and upcoming Paul Rudd movies are Knocked Up, I Could Never Be Your Woman, Over Her Dead Body, Role Models, and Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
‘This Is England’ movie director Shane Meadows vs. the British Board of Film Classification
It’s almost two years since we started shooting This is England and at last the film is nearly out, hitting cinemas here this weekend. I suppose it’s my most personal film to date as the main character, Shaun Fields is loosely based upon me at a time in my childhood.
Shaun is a 12 year-old growing up in Thatcher’s England when Rubik’s Cubes, Doc Martens and political upheaval were all the rage. Shaun gets involved with a local skinhead gang after his father dies in the Falklands war and This is England tells of the repercussions that follow.
Things were looking up for This Is England, winner of the top prize at the 2006 British Independent Film Awards and the Special Jury Prize at the first edition of the Rome Film Festival. But then enters the United Kingdom’s notorious British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), which earlier in 2007 slapped This Is England with an 18 certificate for its use of “realistic violence and racist language.”
‘This Is England’: Film about teenagers unavailable to teenagers
According to Shane Meadows, the BBFC’s decision means that This Is England “is now unavailable to the audience it will benefit the most.” Meadows then added:
It’s like I’ve somehow overachieved. By having one piece of violence and one piece of really acute verbal violence I’ve managed to get an 18 certificate, whereas someone else can slay thousands of people in a single film and that’s OK. To be honest I don’t understand it because, yes, the film is affecting but I think it’s something that someone of 15 can cope with. It’s not like it’s a film about the 80s that has no value; it’s incredibly relevant politically. It’s as much about Iraq as it is about the Falklands. It’s as much as about England in 2007 as it is about England in 1983.
‘This Is England’ cast
This Is England stars British Independent Film Awards’ Most Promising Newcomer Thomas Turgoose as writer-director Shane Meadow’s alter ego, Shaun Fields. Also in the cast: Stephen Graham, Jo Hartley, Andrew Shim, Vicky McClure, Joseph Gilgun, Rosamund Hanson, Andrew Ellis, Perry Benson, and George Newton.
‘This Is England ’86’ and other TV spin-offs
November 2013 update: Two British television series have been based on This Is England: This Is England ’86 (2010) and This Is England ’88 (2011). A third series, This Is England ’90 was originally scheduled to be aired in mid-2012, but its TV debut was postponed so Shane Meadows could focus on his documentary about the Manchester rock band The Stone Roses. Meadows recently stated that This Is England ’90 should start shooting in 2014.
Photo of Joseph Gilgun a.k.a. Joe Gilgun as Woody in This Is England: Warp Films / Optimum Releasing.