Last January, we were invited down to Los Angeles' Warehouse District to get a little advanced taste of the upcoming big screen adaptation of the popular 1965 spy sitcom Get Smart. The film finds Steve Carell filling the shoes of Don Adams as Agent 86. Aka: Maxwell Smart. Other cast members include Terry Crews, Dwayne The Rock Johnson, and improv legend David Koechner.
The cast and crew all seem incredibly excited about this upcoming project. Apparently director Peter Segal had edited a clip reel together the night before, and it looked amazing. The entire crew felt rejuvenated after watching it, and they have brought this buzzing energy onto the set with them. Everyone that we spoke with has high hopes for the project. It is described as an even mix of gut busting comedy and thrill-a-minute action. It is a hybrid the likes of which have never been seen before.
We spoke with Steve Carell about the film. Here is a little bit of what he had to say:
So, how does it feel to be playing Maxwell Smart?
Steve Carell: Incredibly exciting. It has been a long time coming. I don't know if I've talked about this. When Warner Brothers called me in, I thought I was just coming in to audition. I had heard that Will Farrell was attached. Then I heard that he was no longer attached, and that they were looking for someone else. I went in with my picture and resume, and I was expecting to read from the script and audition for it. But they sat me in this room. There were all these head honchos from Warner Brothers, and the producing team from Mosaic. They came right out and said, "We'd like you to play Maxwell Smart." It was one of those moments that I could not believe. It was this quintessential life/career moment where you think, "What the Hell is happening? How did this come to pass? So, I have sort of been pitching ever since then. It's been great. And we are almost more than halfway through now. Every day has been more fun than the next.
How is working with Anne Hathaway? We hear she's been kicking a lot of butt?
Steve Carell: She is excellent. She's an excellent 99. One of the things that surprised me about her, is that she is an excellent improviser. And she is really funny. She's very, very cool. She's on screen, and she comes across as this completely competent super spy. She just brings this attitude with her on screen. As soon as the cameras are off, she is just as silly as anyone else you'd meet on this set. I think she is doing an excellent job.
We also spoke to David Koechner. This is what he had to tell us:
How much improve are you allowed to do on a set like this?
David Koechner: Pete has a pretty generous latitude. We're supposed to cover the script first. Then, when it comes around to doing the coverage, he allows, when appropriate, some improvising. Some ad-libs. Some off-the-cuffies. The mix-it-up, as-you-goes-alongsies.
Can you tell us a little bit about your character, Larabee? How does he compare to the original?
David Koechner: I'm not sure that it's fair to compare the two. Because this is an updated, post modern take. Make sure you right that I said those last words in a real nasally tone. It's an updated script, so your knowledge of the series is not contingent on you getting what is going on in this film. As it should be. I think Larabee is there in name only. That's how I feel. I have not gone back and looked at the old stuff for obvious reasons. I don't want to try and replicate something that has already been done. Plus, I didn't have the time.
That's it for now. We will have a more in-depth look at the behind the scenes shenanigans on the set of Get Smart as we get closer to its June 20th, 2008 Release date.