Ed Helms on ‘The Hangover’ and ‘The Office’ Ending: “You realize if you stayed on the rollercoaster you’d probably get hurt or sick or something”
May has been a month of endings for Ed Helms. First came the series finale of The Office, a show he has been starring in since 2007. Then came The Hangover Part III, which is billed as the final movie in the box office hit comedy franchise. He spoke to Moviefone about the end of two eras in his life and why now is the right time for both to conclude.
Helms wasn’t looking for any grand sendoff for his character, Stu, when he signed on for The Hangover Part III. He explains, “If anything, and for Stu in particular, I just wanted a sense of closure for the whole Hangover/Wolf Pack world. And then if I got a few good jokes in along the way, I’d be happy.” Read more
On May 16th, The Office will be closing its doors. After an eight-year run, Jim Pam, Dwight and the rest of the gang will be moving on to bigger and better things (hopefully). I’ve watched every episode of the long running series and I’ll definitely be sad to see the show go.
Before getting the role of Jim, John Krasinski was like almost every other actor in New York. He’d work his job as a waiter during the week then run off to an audition when he could. He had booked a few things but “not anything that would allow me to claim that I was a working actor and didn’t need another job,” he said during a conference call. Booking The Office was like winning the lottery, “except with a winning lottery ticket you just get money, and with this you get a whole change of your life.”
If you’re a fan of the show, you’ll love this interview. And honestly, even if you’re not, there’s some great stuff in here about what it’s like to go from hustling for auditions to becoming a star on a major network show. In this interview, John and Executive Producer/Writer Greg Daniels talk about the end of The Office, John’s audition, his past commercials and more. It’s a long one but it’s really great.
The Office airs on Thursdays at 9 on NBC – for only 2 more weeks! Read more
Greg Daniels, the showrunner for NBC’s The Office, dropped a bombshell during a recent conference call I participated in: This will be the last season of The Office.
For fans of the show (like me), it was a bit of a shock but definitely not unexpected. This is the 9th season and it’s core group of actors, John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer and Ed Helms are in their last years of a contract and would be on the verge of a huge raise. Rainn Wilson is set to leave and spin off his character, Dwight, on the new show, The Farm and Mindy Kalling (who has a new FOX pilot) and B.J. Novak have taken diminished roles this season. So, yeah, a shock but not unexpected.
I’ll be sad to see the show go but as you’ll read in this interview, they won’t leave it’s audience hanging. Daniels talks about wrapping up the storylines, finally finding out about the documentary crew that’s been following the characters for the past 9 years and if Steve Carell will return.
The Office’s final season begins on NBC on Thursday, September 20th at 9/8c Read more
TV Comedy Actors Roundtable with Don Cheadle, Ed Helms, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ty Burrell, Max Greenfield & Johnny Galecki
Rounding out the last bits of things I wanted to post while I was on vacation are these Hollywood Reporter videos.
Every year, the magazine interviews a set of actors for their Emmy Roundtables videos. These are actors who have a great chance to get an Emmy nomination for their work for the previous TV season.
The interviews are always funny and full of interesting stories and these new videos are just that.
In this interview, THR talks with comedy actors Don Cheadle, Ed Helms, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ty Burrell, Max Greenfield & Johnny Galecki.
Check it out below!
Ed Helms: “I think it’s a really flawed notion that you have to be in a bad place to play a bad character… It’s called acting for a reason”
With the upcoming release of directors Jay and Mark Duplass’ new comedy Jeff Who Lives at Home about to arrive in theaters on April 19th, Vulture caught up with actor Ed Helms who stars in the movie as the titular character’s brother Pat.
A guy The Office star refers to with a laugh as a “dick-y douche bag”, who thinks he has his own life under control, Pat is the polar opposite when compared to Jeff (played by Jason Segel). He’s the movie’s hilarious pot smoking, directionless, thirty something year old living in his mother’s (Susan Sarandon) basement, looking for omens and answers from the 2002 Mel Gibson flick Signs, and who isn’t afraid to admit that he has no idea where he is headed.
In real life Helms had been coined a sweetheart by the Duplass brothers. Flipping the switch from nice guy to bad, Helms shared that you don’t have to be evil to play the part. “I’ve worked with people who are manipulative like that. I think it’s a really flawed notion that you have to be in a bad place to play a bad character, or a damaged character. It’s called acting for a reason.” Read more
The Hangover movies and The Office might have made Ed Helms into a name in comedy (especially comedy that involves perpetual confusion or inability to pick up social cues), but aside from The Hangover movies and Cedar Rapids, Helms has mostly appeared in supporting roles or cameos on the big screen.
So while he might not star as Jeff in Jeff, Who Lives at Home (that would be Jason Segel), Helms does star as Pat, Jeff’s brother — who, as the title implies by exclusion, does not live at home like his brother.
Helms talks about starring in the film, directed by Jay and Mark Duplass, and about his character.
Helms is very direct about why he wanted to star in the film: “Because the script was awesome. And Mark and Jay Duplass are awesome. The script is just the right combination of poignant and hilarious. I’m always wary of things that try to get too sappy, but this really struck a great balance, and there’s even a little darkness in there. There’s a little edge to their movies and I wasn’t sure if maybe these guys were a little bit dark and weird. Then, I had lunch with them, and we had such a great time. They’re joyful, happy guys that just love to tell offbeat stories. Their films The Puffy Chair and Baghead feel viscerally real. It’s a result of the truth they go for from their actors and their camera style, which utilizes a kind of handheld, faux-documentary feel. It makes you feel like your natural eye has just caught this going on around you.” Read more
Jason Segel on ‘Jeff, Who Lives at Home’: “When I read the script, I felt a little bit scared as to whether or not I’d be capable of acting it”
Jason Segel and Ed Helms star as brothers in the subdued comedy Jeff, Who Lives at Home, which coincidentally was written and directed by brothers Jay and Mark Duplass. Falling firmly in the Duplass’ “mumblecore” style (who came up with that term, anyway?), Segel stars as 30 year-old Jeff, who as you might guess, still lives at home.
The star of How I Met Your Mother and The Muppets explains what drew him to the low-budget movie, and what he thought about working with the Duplass brothers.
Segel has some praise for the Duplass brothers, who immediately won over him after their initial meeting. He recalls, “I met Mark and Jay when they offered me this movie. They came to me with the script and we had dinner – and they’re two of the nicest guys I’ve ever met. There’s a scene in the script that calls for this sort of action stunt. And I wanted to do it for them. It’s not like you’re working with some other director and you think, ‘Hey, let a stuntman do it.’ For Mark and Jay, you want to do it for them.” Read more
Trailer: The Duplass Brothers’ ‘Jeff Who Lives At Home’ starring Jason Segel, Ed Helms, Judy Greer, Susan Sarandon
Jeff Who Live At Home: On his way to the store to buy wood glue, Jeff looks for signs from the universe to determine his path. However, a series of comedic and unexpected events leads him to cross paths with his family in the strangest of locations and circumstances. Jeff just may find the meaning of his life… and if he’s lucky, pick up the wood glue as well.
In theaters: March 16th, 2012
Armie Hammer, Ed Helms, Regina King, Julianna Margulies, Natalie Portman to Present at the SAG Awards
The SAG Awards have just announced that Ed Helms, Julianna Margulies and Natalie Portman will join Actor nominee Armie Hammer, SAG Awards® social network ambassador Regina King and SAG President Ken Howard as presenters at the 18th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards®.
The SAG Awards® will be Simulcast Live on TNT and TBS on Sunday, Jan. 29, 2012 at 8 p.m. (ET) / 5 p.m. (PT)
Ed Helms had no idea his character on The Office, Andy Bernard, would be promoted until a few weeks before shooting when he and Executive Producer/Writer Paul Liberstein – who also plays Toby on the show – sat down for lunch. “That’s where I learned of the news,” he said.
Steve Carell’s Michael Scott may be hard shoes to fill, but as Liberstein said, Andy is a great choice because “any little problem that anybody’s having, he would feel very deeply, which makes him very suited to be a comic lead in the show.”
I talked to both Ed and Paul in a conference call where they talked about Andy’s promotion, Helm’s career path and how The Office might end.
Follow Ed on Twitter!
The Office airs on Thursdays at 9/8c on NBC
For the full interview, click the audio link above or download it from iTunes
How did the process go for you in terms of taking the new job? Did you know ahead of time?
Ed Helms: I knew about three or four weeks before we started shooting. That’s when it kind – the news sort of broke internally. And Paul and I had lunch actually and that’s where I learned of the news.
Were the actors vying internally for – or lobbying on behalf of their characters to get the managerial position and having your character getting it, was that a way to capitalize on your film career?
Ed Helms: Well I can only – I can speak to the first part. But the – I kind of felt like – I’ve always really trusted the creative judgment of the show creators, Greg Daniels and Paul Lieberstein and felt like they’ve gotten us so far. And there was a lot of internal sort of wondering and questioning what was next, who might be the next boss.
But I, you know, I think it’s a testament to this cast and the dignity of everyone involved that we all sort of took a little bit of a, I don’t know, just a back seat to the creative considerations upstairs. And what – and we’re sort of eager to support whatever decision came down.
Paul Lieberstein: I think in terms of vying, you know, I haven’t seen an actor want a specific role. I have – I think what an actor wants is in general is something interesting to play and to be challenged and stretched and, you know.
And we intend to do that with all the cast and so, you know, the – a movie can be about the lowliest guy on the street or the President of the United States and if it’s – it’s not so much who’s the manager, you know, you can find something interesting.
So no one really was pressing. They just want to be engaged and challenged. You know, and that’s what we wanted to show as well. Read more