Adam McKay's career as a writer/director took a big left turn when he made The Big Short in 2015. He was previously a filmmaker known for much lighter material, and suddenly he made a serious movie that earned a Best Picture nomination. That tonal trend has continued with his new feature, Vice, but would he be game to going back to his sillier stuff? Based on what he told me in a recent interview, that door is wide open:
Oh God, yes, please. I miss those days. I mean Step Brothers, we laughed every single day. I mean, Talladega Nights, Anchorman, it was the best time. I just don't know, man. I mean, can we do a movie that funny about global warming? If we can, I'll do it! I'm trying to figure it out, trying to figure it out.
What The Big Short and Vice have in common is that they both take on important historical material with a sharp edge and wit, and that approach has changed the way that Adam McKay now takes on projects. This was evident when I brought the subject up earlier this month when I sat down with the filmmaker during the Los Angeles press day for his new movie.
Of course, fans will note that Adam McKay was taking on more pointed and political material long before he started to work on The Big Short. While the 2015 film was a head-on story about the subprime mortgage crisis, the writer/director used the subject of major and topical financial crimes to fuel the plot in the 2010 comedy The Other Guys. That movie, which is more a parody of buddy copy flicks than anything, is absolutely hilarious, so I actually have little doubt that McKay could find a way to make a comedy with deep-rooted commentary about global warming.
All that being said, the filmmaker did seem to be legitimately open to another shift in gear that would take him back to the material that that started his career in the film world. Discussing a conversation he had with a colleague, Adam McKay added that his life could benefit from doing something with a bit less weight. Said the director,
After [Vice] and The Big Short, even though they both have comedy in them, without a doubt, my executive producer Robyn Wholey and I were laughing like, 'We need a comedy. We definitely do.' So you tell me what's the comedy is, and I'm in.
The suggestion that I offered? Literally anything with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, as their chemistry under the guidance of Adam McKay is absolute perfection.
You can watch Adam McKay discuss his potential return to films more in the vein of Step Brothers and Anchorman by clicking play on the video below.
While Adam McKay meditates on what the future holds for him, Vice is arriving in theaters in time for Christmas Day, on December 25th. The film, starring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Steve Carell, Tyler Perry, and Sam Rockwell, is one of the best of the year -- and be sure to stay tuned here on CinemaBlend for more from my interviews with McKay and the stars.