What happens when you lock six comedians in a house for almost the entire length of a feature film? A lot of improvisation. Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg teamed up to write and direct the summer blockbuster hit This Is the End, but when Rogen, Craig Robinson, James Franco, Danny McBride, Jonah Hill, and Jay Baruchel were put in the same room, no script could hold them down. Not that it wanted to.
Below, co-writer/co-director Evan Goldberg reflects on some of his favorite improvised moments from the film, and talks about how the film’s retro ending — Backstreet Boys! — came about.
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As told by: Evan Goldberg
On his favorite improvised moments: I’ll start with what I think was my best. I’ll always remember it because Jonah [Hill] always reminds me that it’s the hardest he’s ever laughed in his life. And in reality, what I’m about to say kind of gets less laughs than a lot of the other jokes in the movie. Every now and then you just leave one joke in for yourself and this was it — it gets like a medium laugh, but it doesn’t kill. It’s when Jonah’s got Seth [Rogen] pinned down and he goes, “I’m going to titty-f–k you, Seth. What are they, big B’s or small C’s?” That line — “What are they, big B’s or small C’s?” — was mine. That really killed Jonah. We had to cut and wait a minute because he was laughing so hard. When Seth pushed his chest together, I thought that was incredibly funny.
My favorite improv of the movie might be when [James] Franco says, “It’s like Neapolitan ice cream” in reference to the father, son, and the holy ghost. That just kills me. I thought that was one of the funniest jokes I’ve ever heard.
Quite unforgettable for me was when Craig Robinson improvised — he had it pre-planned, I know, but not fully — that, “Here’s Terrence Peterson, my monkey flashlight key chain.” And they say, “What’s its name again?” “Terrence Peterson.” And then there’s a pause, and someone says something else, and he goes, “Terry Pete.” That’s just the weirdest. I don’t even know why it’s funny, but audiences love that one.
There are some Jay [Baruchel] said that are too offensive for me to repeat. That’s what I got off the top of my head. READ FULL STORY