The two stars and director talk about their latest comedy
The man is just plain funny - whatever Adam Sandler decides to do, he makes it a hit. Either producing or acting, or even making albums, it's a good time had by all. Even when Adam heads the drama route, he seems to deliver gold.
In his latest film, Click, Adam stars as an architect designer, has a hot wife in Kate Beckinsale, and two kids. But, he just doesn't seem to have enough time for it all - especially, when his boss, played by David Hasselhoff, forces him to work on a few projects during July 4th weekend and a family vacation.
That is, until one night, when he meets Christopher Walken in a Bed, Bath, and Beyond store - in the 'Beyond' section. Walken is an electronic master, who gives Adam a universal remote to control his schedule. Unfortunately, Adam takes a little too much advantage of the remote and skips through about 50 years of his life (on auto-pilot).
We had the chance to talk to Adam, Kate, and director Frank Coraci (and Adam's good friend). They joked around about working together in Click and Adam talked about being a new father. Here's how the chat went:
Adam, is there a real O'Doyle family because they seem to pop up in a lot of your movies?
Adam Sandler: That was "Billy Madison" - a classic by the way - it doesn't matter; it's an American movie. This guy, Rich Wilkes, he did a rewrite on "Billy Madison" - I remember that back in the day - and he added the O'Doyle thing; I think it was his buddy, and we always laugh at. A lot of kids always come up to me and talk about the O'Doyles so that's why we named this kid O'Doyle. But Rich Wilkes gets the credit on that name; I don't know any O'Doyles, I know people like the O'Doyles.
When you read this script, did you feel like you're fast forwarding through some of your life?
Adam Sander: Sure, yeah, definitely; we all read this thing and connected to it because, when you're shooting a movie you are away from home most of the time. It's an amazing thing that we get to do what we get to do, but you definitely are away from the family more than you'd like to be and time keeps passing, and I go movie to movie a lot and yeah, I'm 39 years old. I do feel looking back on the past 10 years of my life, I've been at work more than I've been at home, so I connected with this movie, the message of the movie. By the end of the movie, when I watch it, when I watched the playback the other day, I went home. I was excited to get home and do the right thing - be with the family. And I've heard a few people comment on that.
Kate, early in your career you did a lot of comedy; was it nice to return to your comedic roots?
Kate Beckinsale: It really was, and there were more this time; it was a big coming home for me. But it was actually for me, a personal thing because I think my father had been in England a very well known comedy actor, and I think I was very attracted to that because I had grown up on it, but I think I also slightly tried to steer clear of it - just I didn't want to tread on anyone else's patch, I kind of wanted to be on my own patch. And then on this movie I actually turned a year older than my father got to, and it was a very liberating moment finding myself; I made it to 32 and I'm in a comedy and everyone's being really nice, and I wasn't away from the family because we shot in L.A. and my daughter was around. And it was just like a blissful and lovely sort of blossoming moment for me, you know.
How did you enjoy being gracefully aged?
Kate Beckinsale: The gracefully aged thing is a big shocker. I thought I was going to handle it better than I actually did. I think that at some point everybody turns into their mother or their father, it's just not normally from morning to afternoon, and it gives you a moment of totally existential panic. Because you sit there for six whole hours and, it's kind of boring and goes on and on and on, and then at the end of it you look so much worse and more creepy than you did when you, than when you went in. And they modeled my hairstyle on the hairstyle my mother wore at my wedding so the whole thing was just kind of spooky.
Adam Sandler: I thought you looked great every step of the way.
Kate Beckinsale: That's very nice; he looked like a mixture of Humphrey Bogart and George Burns.
Kate, how was it to be married to Adam in this?
Kate Beckinsale: How was it being married to him? I thoroughly enjoyed it; I didn't have to take him home, I didn't have to yell at him about going and playing golf or all of that stuff that would probably really bug me in real life if I was married to him. But I had the sort of total movie pleasure of everything apart from anything leaking or gross or leaving me on my own or any of that. See it was perfect; it was a blissful marriage and I was really kind of sad when it was over.
Frank, what kind of processes did you go through to get the looks for the aging process?
Frank Coraci: There was sort of a conscious choice when doing aging where sometimes you see a movie and you suddenly see somebody in old age makeup and it sort of pulls you out of the movie. So there was a conscious effort to not go quite as far because I thought people aren't going to actually keep track of how many years it is and stuff. And the other thing we did was actually look at pictures of their parents and sort of know how they would naturally age; and Rick Baker, who is probably the greatest make-up artist ever, that was a process he wanted to take, and kind of together we found a way to make them look - the way they would look and not take it to the point where it would take you out of the movie.
Do you think Sandler fans are going to get the 'darkness' of this character?
Adam Sandler: You know, I felt like with the remote control itself we had a lot of jokes and a lot of humor in the movie, and the thing that was attractive to all of us was that second half of the movie, and I thought people who had seen some of my movies in the past, they can handle it. We give enough jokes to relax you but it gets heavier than we've ever had before in one of our movies, but -
Frank Coraci: I kind of feel like - more than heavy, I think that part of the story brought the heart, and I think Adam and Kate's performance has really brought the heart out in the movie. I think of it as the heart of the movie, and that's really what we strive to do when we make movies together is make movies that make you feel things and think about life.
Adam Sandler: That's right, Wedding Singer was kind of sweet too; and even Bobby Boucher (The Waterboy) had his moments of sweetness. But as an actor doing some of those scenes where it was heavy, you know the stuff was about - what had to be the heaviness was about my father, and I lost my father a couple of years ago so it was very fresh and I had a different relationship with my real father than I did in the movie. My father in real life, I wanted him to be at my house all the time; when he would go away, I would be like, oh, g-dammit, I want to hang out with my father today. So it was different; I never thought my dad was a pain in the ass like my character does, but you know the actual finding out your father is sick or your father is dying or he's dead that was easy as an actor to play that because it was very fresh.
How's being a dad?
Adam Sandler: The baby situation is fine, it's great; I love that kid. Everyday I get more and more excited and I feel comfortable with her; I just want her to feel comfortable with me, I'm a little bit clutsy.
Kate Beckinsale: That takes a long time.
Adam Sandler: My arms aren't perfect for the kid's head when I hold her like this.
Kate Beckinsale: You need boobs.
Adam Sandler: Hey, I got a girl with boobs, man.
Are you changing diapers?
Adam Sandler: I see that go on; cheering on my wife. I say 'good feeding' a lot, 'way to go', 'nice milk.'
You seem to do comedy and drama and even in all your movies it's a little bit of both; what do you prefer as far as a genre to do?
Adam Sandler: Much more comfortable showing up that day knowing we got a funny scene coming. The day where I had to be upset over my father in the movie - I don't like sitting in my trailer being depressed all day and looking at pictures. I don't like that, I do it, I'm glad when it's over; it's a huge relief. And if I think I did the best I could do I feel, ah, a huge sense of accomplishment. But I'd rather go to work and fart in Hasselhoff's face.
Frank Coraci: Who wouldn't really?
Adam Sandler: That's right.
Do you have any funny Christopher Walken stories?
Adam Sandler: Every day was pretty enjoyable, watching 'The Walken;' my favorite thing was introducing anybody to Walken, just the fear in everybody's eye when they're shaking Walken's hand, they don't know what's gonna happen. Walken's always very cordial, but people tend to be nervous around the man.
Kate Beckinsale: You said 'cordial' and I wouldn't have immediately picked that word; I remember my daughter running into him in his costume by the crafts service table and coming back with like the whites of her eyes showing, 'I've seen a man that I don't like.' She actually really warmed to him - he had the big belly, wasn't it and he had the funny wig and everything.
Frank and Kate, how what it working with Adam?
Kate Beckinsale: I really don't like to do that when he's here.
Adam Sandler: I'm not even listening.
Kate Beckinsale: I had such an amazing time on the movie; I really did think I might just be this sort of roaming pair of breasts that wouldn't quite fit. You know what I mean? Everybody would be watching sports and I'd be kind of tolerated and then I might bend over and it might be an event. You know what I mean? Like I said, my daughter was around, these kids were brilliant on the movie. If I had a child actor, I would wish for it to be in an Adam Sandler movie, because he just comes in and makes them so comfortable and is so brilliant with them and they all go home and they that they've got this special relationship. My daughter has decided that he's a relative. Just generous and brilliant to work with. I mean, really, I was so bummed out when it was over. I felt like summer camp had ended and nobody invited me to Hannukah. It was great; I loved it, I'd do it again in a shot.
Frank Coraci: And the thing that's nice about working with Adam is that there's sort of a family vibe, cause people who have worked on his movies have worked on many of his movies, so along with the kids and the cast, all the people that worked on the movie, it was like a family and every day we'd make each other laugh. And the pleasant surprise was that Kate made us laugh quite often; she fit right in.
Adam Sandler: Absolutely.
Did you play jokes on him?
Kate Beckinsale: Not so much; did I play jokes on you? It was constant teasing.
Did you flash them?
Kate Beckinsale: I tend to save that; no, I'll save that for the sequel at the very least.
How do you decide which films you'll star in and which one's you'll produce?
Adam Sandler: I don't know; it's something I feel I can do alright, I like being in those, and some that I think (Rob) Schneider and (David) Spade would be funnier at than me, I tell them to do it. I don't know. I don't have any clue how we decide; there's this thing, this 'Click' just actually - I don't even know where I was, but somebody, one of my friends called me up, my partner told me about this idea that Steve Koren had. They told me about the premise of the movie and asked if I was interested in that and I didn't even read the script, I just said, 'Yeah, that's a huge idea; it sounds great.' That's how I decided to do this script, just off three sentences about what the movie's about, I knew it could be awesome.
Are you influenced outside of yourself by the roles you take? Does your wife influence you?
Adam Sandler: Sure, sure. She tells me that she thinks I can do it. If I read something and I go, 'I'm pretty sure.' I just did a movie that Mike Binder wrote and it's a very heavy movie and I was scared to do it, and my wife read it and encouraged me and said she thinks I could do it. I just try to do stuff that I think is going to be a good movie; I'm just looking to make good movies and looking to be as good as I can be in them and that's about it. But I feel much more comfortable doing a comedy, but the fact that I got to try a few dramas, I feel I've tested myself a little bit.
Could you talk about Empty City, the 9/11 a little bit?
Adam Sandler: I don't know how to describe the movie, how to sum it up; I can't wait for Mike Binder, the man who wrote it, and hear him discuss it, because I don't know how to phrase this. But it's just about a man who's been through a terrible thing; he lost his family in 9/11, and he has a hard time just living life and just being in the moment. He doesn't want to know about life; he tries to pretend he never had a family. He can only deal with life by thinking about stuff from his past and growing up and he bumps into - (Don) Cheadle plays, we went to dental school together, and my character hasn't spoken to anybody in five years and Cheadle makes him feel comfortable. So it's about friendship, I guess. I'm sorry, I just don't know how to say; it's a really interesting script and Mike Binder did a great job with the script and I saw some of it recently and it's a heavy-duty movie.
It's fictional, right?
Adam Sandler: Yeah, no; it's not a real guy, not one particularly real guy, but he did a lot of research and met a lot of people it affected.
Could you talk about choosing the music for this film?
Adam Sandler: Yeah, we all got songs we loved in this movie; it fits. You [Kate] like a lot of these things; the Cranberries tune was Tim Herlihy, that was one of his favorite tunes, and I love that song, too. You guys love that one, right? Coraci?
Frank Coraci: Yeah, I don't know; we just try to pick songs that we go, 'Yeah, that one does it; that's something that reminds of growing up or summer.' A lot of that; we all have to feel that we love it and it ends up hopefully working out, because people tend to like the music.
Adam Sandler: We're psyched when it's a song from growing up that; I am 39 and when a fellow 39-year-old comes up to me and says, 'I like that one tune in your movie,' I'm happy to heard that.
Is the next year worrying you?
Adam Sandler: Nope, I got my kid, I've got the kid. I feel a little more relief that I don't have to just think about myself too much. Man, I've had 39 years just talking about how great I am; it's time, at age 40, to talk about the kid.
Kate, have you given any parenting advice to Adam?
Kate Beckinsale: If you're wife's crying a lot, buy some jewelry.
Adam Sandler: Kate is a great, great mom and whenever Lily was around, man, it was fun. All of us love the love affair of Kate and Lily and how comfortable Lily felt whenever - she would just run to her mom and I think all of us, because none of us had kids at the time. We were all like, that's what it's going to be like; that's going to be fun.
Has being a father changed the way you approach material?
Adam Sandler: More than that, I don't want my kid to hear any of the albums that I've made.
Kate Beckinsale: Oh my G-d, my kid has some stuff; I'm horrified.
Adam Sandler: I'm sorry.
Kate Beckinsale: I couldn't figure out what's going wrong because she kept saying to me, what was it, I had never even heard the whole thing, 'They're all gonna laugh at you.' What is that, is that you?
Adam Sandler: Yeah.
Are you going to do more family-oriented films?
Adam Sandler: No, I don't know what the hell I'm doing; I like what I've been doing. I believe in what I've done in the past and I hope to make a movie that; I hope my kid enjoys the movies I've made and enjoys some of the movies in the future. I don't think she's going to dig them until she's maybe 14 or 15 or something, or 10 but I know I'll show her her whole life, 'Watch Daddy now; this doesn't affect you the way it affected all of America.'
How did you get Sean Astin to wear the Speedo?
Adam Sandler: Easy.
Kate Beckinsale: Couldn't get him out of it.
Frank Coraci: He packed better in a Speedo than most people would though.
Adam Sandler: Strong legs, strong body, had something in there, so.
Kate Beckinsale: I know what it was; I touched it. It was like a ladies stocking with some dried peas in it, that's what it was - this is the important stuff you're asking me.
Kate, any chance for an Underworld 3?
Kate Beckinsale: I don't think I'm invited to that one; I think it was always planned as a prequel so I wasn't a vampire yet.
Is there any gadget from today you wish you had as a kid?
Adam Sandler: An iPod
Are you doing a comedy next?
Adam Sandler: Yeah, a movie with Kevin James - I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry; we're just getting ready. I'm just taking the summer off to hang out with family and then we're going to get rockin' on that.
You can check out Adam Sandler, Kate Beckinsale, Christopher Walken, Sean Astin, and Henry Winkler in Click which hits theaters June 23rd; it's rated PG-13.