Jay Baruchel Interview For ‘This Is The End’
‘This Is The End’ follows six friends trapped in a house after a series of strange and catastrophic events devastate Los Angeles. As the world unravels outside, dwindling supplies and cabin fever threaten to tear apart the friendships inside. Once they discover that they are experiencing the Apocalypse, they must come to terms with why they were left behind. Eventually they are forced to leave the house, facing their fate and the true meaning of friendship and redemption. Scheduled for a June 12th release in the US and a June 28th bow in the UK, the all-star cast for the film includes Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Danny McBride, Jason Segel, Michael Cera, Kevin Hart, Aziz Ansari, Craig Robinson, Emma Watson, David Krumholtz, Paul Rudd, Martin Starr, Mindy Kaling, Kevin Hart, and Rihanna. Members of the cast portray fictional versions of themselves.
How was it working under the direction of your friends in Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, two guys you’ve known for over 10 years?
Jay Baruchel: It was awesome. It was unique for me to be on the set of a movie where I’ve know the directors for over 12 years, since I was 18. So I might have been a a bit respectful, because I firmly believe in a hierarchy on a movie set and respecting the directors, but that being said there can be no hierarchical structure with guys I’ve seen in their underwear eating loose spoonfuls of peanut butter, in a terrible muggy apartment (laughs). But honestly, it’s a trip. It is pretty cool, it was great working under the direction of Evan and Seth.
While most of the characters in ‘This Is The End’ are incredibly heightened versions of the actors playing the roles, your version of yourself seems to be somewhat of the voice of reason?
Jay Baruchel: Yeah. We wanted each of our characters to have a nucleus of something that’s real, so we are kind of like heightened versions of ourselves. We thought about what’s funniest about all of us and tried to find what’s funniest about our specific relationships. Then we tried to milk that (Laughs). I’m hopefully the guy in the movie that the audience identifies with. I thought of myself as the voice of reason. But I realised it’s more than that, I’m also kind of a wet blanket. Even in the development process I was specifying to keep the showbiz talk to a minimum, so that came out in my character (laughs). My character has a chip on his shoulder – he rolls his eyes at all of the LA nonsense and has nothing but unpleasant things to say about show business. I wish I could say that I didn’t think my character was better than the others, but I can’t help it. I’m a Montrealer, we’re raised to be holier than thou.
How did you find it working with this group of actors, working off each other?
Jay Baruchel: I’ve been a part of some pretty cool ensembles before, with ‘Tropic Thunder,’ ‘Knocked Up,’ ‘Goon,’ ‘The Trotsky’… and I always trip out on getting to see how the other actors work. It’s like a team, you know? Each guy has a different thing that they excel at and what is a failing on one guy is a virtue on another guy. I think once you figure out the groove and kind of figure out where we all fit in, we all just kind of rolled with it. I don’t think you could find six actors with different energies and different takes on life, but because we all have shorthand with each other, we work pretty well in concert. I think the combination leads to funny stuff.
Was there someone in particular who made you laugh the most on set?
Jay Baruchel: Hands down Danny McBride makes me laugh more than anybody. The few times that I burst out laughing while filming – I’m usually pretty good at holding that back, but the few times I really broke the moment was all Danny’s stuff. The man could read the phone book and it would be some of the funniest stuff I’ve ever heard, I actually think that would be an awesome comedy record: “Danny McBride reads the Wilmington, North Carolina phone book”. (Laughs) But just his cadence, his posture. The whole thing. I’m a massive fan, he cracks me up constantly.
For me, this film seems to lend itself into some of the classic horror films and comedy films of the late 80s and early 90s….?
Jay Baruchel: Yeah. We grew up in the golden age of horror and action movies, I like to think. And this kind of reminds of a lot of the movies I would have waited and waited and waited until it came out in the video store, or I would have snuck into – I would have bought tickets for something U-rated and snuck into this (laughs). It’s weird, in that I think it’s very new and different in some respects, but then it’s very old school in other respects. We all find blood and guts kind of funny, and we all love monsters and explosions so it makes total sense that a movie with all of us would have all of those things in it.
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