Dane Cook talks about working with Jessica Alba, Dan Fogler and director Mark Helfrich to make both a funny and real film
I've often felt that Dane Cook is too good looking to be a comedian. When I think of funny comics, the guys that make me really laugh, I think of Larry David.
Not Dane Cook.
However, it is precisely this ability to play both sides of the coin as Cook did in both Windy City Heat and Mr. Brooks that makes him perfect to play a comic ladies man in Good Luck Chuck.
It all started when Charlie Logan was ten years old. Breaking the cardinal rules of spin-the-bottle, Charlie refused to lip-lock with a demented Goth girl - and she put a hex on him. Now, twenty-five years later, Charlie (Dane Cook) is a successful dentist...and still cursed. While his plastic surgeon best friend, Stu (Dan Fogler), pursues as many of his patients as possible, Charlie can't seem to find the right girl. Even worse, he discovers at an ex-girlfriend's wedding that every woman he's ever slept with has found true love - with the next guy after him. Before he knows it, Charlie's reputation as a "good luck charm" has women - from sexy strangers to his overweight receptionist - lining up for a quickie. But a life filled with all sex and no love has Charlie lonelier than ever - that is, until he meets Cam (Jessica Alba).
What was it like working with Jessica Alba?
Dane Cook: Jessica Alba never ceased to amaze me and the thing about her, which was so rewarding, I come from the world of stand-up comedy and in that world when you're on stage it's about going for it. You can't hold back and you've got to really be willing to put yourself on the cusp of fear at all times. Watching her and working with her we not only laughed out asses off quite a bit but she really came in there and said, "I don't care how I look...," any ego, what's funny? When your co-star says that and it's Jessica Alba then you know that you're making something great together and we had a blast.
So everything meshed, your timing and everything?
Dane Cook: Everything meshed and on top of that it's just a great story with a really unique, clever twist so that we could really chew the scenery quite a bit.
Which Jessica was a better kisser? Alba or Simpson?
Dane Cook: I definitely am not going to comment on that. They're both great people and I consider both of them very good friends. So I guess the term, you don't kiss and tell would apply.
Are you working with Jessica Biel for the next film?
Dane Cook: I worked with Biel in the last film before Employee of the Month, it was called London. So (laughing) I actually have worked with Jessica Biel; the Jessica Hat trick.
How does Stu help or hinder Chuck's quest in the movie?
Dane Cook: That's a great question because when we really got under way and Dan Fogler (Stu) came in, who I was already a fan of, I thought this could be one of those real classic, buddy movie moments. Granted we have a comedy on our hands but what can we do to give it elements of that real classic, best friend... in true best friend roles like that it always comes from love. Everything you do, whether it's being a buffoon or being the guy that finally throws your car keys in the air and you grab them in the moonlight, "Thanks man! I'm going to get the girl!" Dan really brought elements of both to his character.
After the praise you got for your dramatic role in Mr. Brooks are you looking to do more dramatic work?
Dane Cook: I am definitely not going to kick a dramatic script out of bed, so to speak. I'm interested in doing anything and everything that I can to squeeze that creativity out of my brain. I guess I'm kind of a performance rat, that's what I want to do, I love being on stage if I'm not on a set. If I'm at home I'm usually in my office editing or reconstructing my website or whatever it may be. I just love putting creativity into a performance.
What's it like working with penguins? I hear they can be evil creatures?
Dane Cook: (Laughs) The penguins that we had, we had 5, they used CGI and they made it into a 1000 penguins, but the 5 that we worked with I almost liken them to puppies. They were very friendly but to be very direct, much like horses. They don't think about when they're gonna poo they just kind of do their business. They were very smart and fun to play with.
How open was director Mark Helfrich to letting you and Dan go off the script?
Dane Cook: We definitely had our share of being let off the leash so to speak. Again, I'm a performer and especially with the collaborative effort of a film that wants to see it on the page first. I've been in situations where somebody says, "Just go in there and make it up as you go." When you're working with a team of people not everybody's always thinking on the same parallel thinking. If it's on the page, Josh Stolberg wrote a great script that made me laugh outloud, pacing around my house reading it. You get on to the set, you do it as written a couple of times and then Mark might say to us, "Are you feeling anything else? Is there any other truth that you can throw in here?" When I finally watched the final movie I can definitely say there's a big chunk of in the moment spontaneous comedy that just can't have written.
You stand up is such a specific personality how much of that can you bring to a movie to give your fans what they want?
Dane Cook: It's interesting because I do look at it as such a different entity. The gameplan, your approach but when it came to comedy specifically, I just wanted to have the element of truth. I think that people who do enjoy my stand-up comedy and the people who get it... they see that I'm a guy that has love of the game. I stick to the basic, real principal of comedy: get f*cking laughs. It's a simply equation for me.
Are there any plans to do more movies with Dan Fogler?
Dane Cook: Working with Dan I said to him, "I know we've made a really great comedy. Now it's up to the movie Gods and the timing of whatever it is in the public's want." If people come out and see this movie and support it I said, "Dan, lets do it again. Lets hook it up, lets try and get something going for next year." That question will be answered if people come and asses are in the seats then Dan and I might have another shot.
Good Luck Chuck hits theaters September 21 from Lionsgate.