Zach Galifianakis Dives Into The Mind Of Alan On The Set Of The Hangover Part III

By Eric Eisenberg 2013-04-19 17:08:13discussion comments
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Alan Chow Hangover III
Sounds like this is a definite end to the franchise. Is it satisfying, how it all completes?

Yeah, it is an end to it, and it's kind of a sweet ending. And I mean that overall. The whole thing, it's been fun to work on, and the ending, I think, will be satisfying to those that really like these movies because there's just a lot of good jokes. And we're kind of straying away from the formula of the first two a bit more than we were in the second one. Did I answer your question?

Yeah. Are you satisfied by it?

Kind of. Yes! Yeah. That'll be it.

But sad as well, to leave Alan?

You know, I probably will get a little… it's one of these things. It's like, "Well, I can't play that character anymore. I won't do that again in a thing." Obviously I'll probably play a variation of a weirdo, because you get painted into a corner in this business. But yeah, I think I'll be very sentimental about it. These movies have been very good to the actors in this, and we want to return it by being good to the audience as much as we can, for those paying their… how much are movies? Ten bucks?

It's thirteen, maybe.

It's thirteen?

Yeah.

I haven't paid for a movie since Yentl.

The first Hangover film was your big breakout. That was where you became a star. I'm curious, how has your approach to acting and character and projects changed since then?

It hasn't changed, really, much at all, I don't think. The characters that you play, if they're specific enough and in your mind you make them specific enough, just like we were touching on earlier about… things that necessarily are not on the page, you try to think about when you're dreaming up the characters. It can be as trivial as the kind of car I think that they may drive or the kind of music that they may listen to. And then you get more specific from there: what the relationship with their family may be, even if you don't see their family. It's this thing that I try to put in my head that I don't even really share with anybody, just for my own… it's my way of acting like I'm doing my research. But part of it for me is just being as loose as I can be and not overthink things. Because I think if you tend to overthink things, it shows up in the work you do. So I'm pretty loose and I zen out a little bit. I think I'm a little bit like the character. Once I get to work, I'm a little bit like the character. Even during lunch, a little bit. Not that I'm a method guy whatsoever. I'm Crystal Method. But you live with it a little bit because, twelve, fourteen hour days, you're living in this, and then you go home and you don't want to annoy people you live with. So I leave it. But there's really no different approach. I mean, I come from a world of standup, so I'm not a trained actor. I'm a guy that got lucky. It's not lost on me.

Can you talk about working with John Goodman and the dynamic that he brought to the project?

When you do work with an actor that's been in a lot of stuff, I think sometimes people get intimidated. To me it's just kind of exciting to be able to work with these experienced people. And Todd is very good at casting. But there is a moment when you're standing next to this big, great American actor and you think, "God, I used to watch this person in The Big Lebowski, and all this stuff, and now I'm in the same state with him." You know? That intimidation goes away and you get to work. But John is a big laugher and he's a big man, and he fit in quite nicely with all of us. I think for someone coming into a situation where it's kind of cliquish, meaning we've all worked together for three movies, it's hard for an outside actor to come in. But he coped very, very well, obviously.

We know that there's a death and we know that we can't know who today, but I'm wondering, will the audience cry?

You know, I hope so. It depends on the edit. You never know which strings… it's a comedy. I think making someone emotional and crying in one scene and then funny the next is really fun to watch. And not a lot of comedies show that emotional side. But for me, I like to show that kind of thing because it humanizes this idiot, Alan. So hopefully that will be part of it. You never know. I know we shot some stuff that could be a little touching. [Looking at the on-set publicist] That's a good answer, right? I keep looking at her like she's my mom or something. "Did you watch me dive off the dive board?" You know how kids always look at their parents?

How has your shorthand developed since the first Hangover to now, with the clique, with the Wolf Pack?

We gel pretty well, and it's not anything that we really talk about, it's just kind of an unspoken thing. We give each other help. Bradley [Cooper] will pull me aside and I will pull him aside and go, "You know what? Why don't you… what about this idea?" It could be something very specific. And it's either rejected or, "Thank you, that's very nice, for the input." If you've worked with people before, you start, no matter what you do for a living, if you work in a bakery or a HoneyBaked Ham store… sorry, I'm so hungry. HoneyBaked cupcakes would be a good idea. But you start, not all the time, but in this case, for sure, you start walking in tandem and things start clicking with the clique. But that was the case in the first one. We all gelled pretty well. And I think Todd, with the casting, that's one of the decisions that probably he would have made, is that, you want to get people that don't have this ego that they bring to a set. That's not helpful for, at least, me. I've worked with egos before and I tend to shut down, but here there's none of that stuff whatsoever. It's just actors acting, I guess. But I've known Ed and Bradley prior to these jobs, so it's nice that we knew each other also.

You and Todd have sort of a love-hate relationship, like you were talking about with the stripes on your shirt. But obviously you respect each other very much. Is that a type of fuel for a performance that you don't get from just any director?

Well, every director works differently, and some are-- Todd gets a pass from me because he's really funny in his insults. So as long as he stays funny with his insults, not just insults, then everything's fine. We do make each other laugh, we do have that thing that we… we do have a very similar sense of humor. And he's a very good director and he knows what he wants. A lot of directors don't know quite what they want. But you'll go give Todd a suggestion, he's like, "No." And he'll usually know right away. So that's a very good thing, a good quality in a director, as far as my little knowledge. Yeah, I don't know if we have a love-hate. I think we love each other, it's just his way of communicating and my way of communicating are two different schools of communication. That's as euphoric as I can make it. Euphemistic as I can make it, excuse me.
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