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Amy Poehler and Will Ferrell are incredibly funny people. They have spent decades honing their craft and making hilarious films and television shows, and if you give them the opportunity to try and make you laugh, they will sprint through that door. This was a wonderful lesson that I learned during the Los Angeles press day for The House earlier this month, as you can witness in the video below:
Press junkets can be repetitive affairs for actors who have to field the same questions over and over again for hours -- so I offered up something a bit different when I sat down with Amy Poehler and Will Ferrell in early June. Recognizing that they have never actually starred in a two-hander before, I asked about their history together, and what it was that united them for The House. They could have traveled the boring route and talked about a history discussing potential projects, but instead they took my bit of comedic bait about ending a bitter, years-long blood feud.
It turns out that Will Ferrell was none-to-happy about Amy Poehler revealing his secret wig-hidden baldness -- and while they did eventually agree to work together on The House, it was basically an orchestrated competition to see who was funnier. And yes, it naturally involved tally counters (which they actually kind of seemed to bond over).
More seriously, Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler have been in the comedy game for roughly the same amount of time, but their careers weirdly only have limited crossover. They came up through different theaters (Groundlings vs UCB), and Poehler joined the cast of Saturday Night Live the year that wound up being Ferrell's last (2001). Poehler previously had a supporting part in the ice skating comedy Blades of Glory, and a cameo in the reporter battle sequence at the end of Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, but she never shared significant on-screen time together with Ferrell before The House. (You'd think that they could have come together for an episode of Parks and Recreation, but it never happened). Admittedly my interview failed to reveal the real reason why the two comedy stars hadn't previously worked together-- and if perhaps there were other projects that they almost collaborated on - but you can clearly see that the world has been missing out on something special.
Fans of both Amy Poehler and Will Ferrell will have the chance to see their hidden game of one-upmanship when The House -- co-starring Jason Mantzoukas and Nick Kroll -- arrives in theaters this Friday, June 30th. Stay tuned here on CinemaBlend, as we'll have more for you about the movie here in the next few days!