Paul Rudd on Why ‘Likability’ Isn’t Important for a Character and Why He Keeps Doing Theater

Though Paul Rudd is likely gearing up for the release of This is Forty, his latest film with frequent collaborator writer/director Judd Apatow, audiences can see him on stage in New York in Grace.  Rudd plays a born-again businessman who moves to Florida in order to start a chain of gospel-themed hotels.  I thought he was wonderful in the play (you can check out my review here), although the play has driven at least one person to vomiting (although, to be fair, that probably had little to do with the play itself).

In an interview with The New York Times, Rudd talks about his character and why he continues to appear on stage despite being a comedy movie star.

Since his character in the play is deeply religious but, as a consequence, also very pushy about his beliefs, the character has been described as unlikable — a description that Rudd doesn’t necessarily agree with.  He explains, “I’ve never quite understood the whole thing about ‘likable’ and ‘unlikable.’  I know that sometimes when you read a script or studios are deciding about things, it’s like, ‘This character is unlikable,’ or ‘He’s unlikable; you’ve got to make him likable.’ I don’t quite get what that means. Everybody has moments of likability and unlikablity. I’m more interested in relatability.”

When asked why Rudd continues to do plays when he can easily continue in high-profile comedies — like next year’s Anchorman 2 — Rudd points out that the feeling he gets from being on stage can’t be replicated on a film set.  He says, “When you’re not thinking about lines and you’re not thinking about your laundry list and you’re just completely present in a scene and an audience is completely present in a scene, it takes flight in a way that is at least for me tough to describe. The temperature in the room changes.”

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/margot-robbie-z-for-Zachariah.jpg
Margot Robbie: “Ironically, you have to do the bigger films in order to make a small film”
"When I first tried to do Z for Zachariah, I couldn’t attach enough value to my name" - Margot Robbie
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/jesse-eisenberg-american-ultra.jpg
Jesse Eisenberg on Starring in Action Movies, Kristen Stewart, and How Playing Lex Luthor Felt Like an Off-Broadway Play
"The old cliché in theater is, if you’re nervous, pick up a prop, which will immediately take you outside of your mind." - Jesse Eisenberg
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Ian-McKellen-Mr-Holmes.jpg
Ian McKellen on CGI, the One Character He Wants to Play and Why He Doesn’t Like Being Called “Sir”
"Each part will have its challenges and I like that because if you're trying to solve a problem you're fully engaged" - Ian McKellen
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/kit-harington-game-of-thrones.jpg
Kit Harington: “You got into this job to play roles and depict characters, celebrity is an unfortunate side effect”
“I kind of weirdly fell into being an action hero…I have no f— idea how that happened. You have to remind people that you want to act rather than just run around" - Kit Harington
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/dustin-hoffman.jpg
Dustin Hoffman: “It’s the worst that film has ever been – in the 50 years that I’ve been doing it”
“I was a freak accident, so I got a lead that happened to be The Graduate and it was like a light switch went on and I was an instant star" - Dustin Hoffman