Movie Feature

Sean Anders' 'Horrible Bosses 2' and its fearless cast

By Zaki JufriMovies - 26 November 2014 4:46 PM | Updated 01 December 2014

Sean Anders' 'Horrible Bosses 2' and its fearless cast

For anyone who has ever thought of doing unspeakable things to their bosses, get excited.

‘Horrible Bosses’ is back with a sequel, with crazier antics than its predecessor.

Director Sean Anders revealed: “It was apparent from the very beginning that this movie was going to be really hard to pull off. Once we had a few ideas that we liked, it became a fun challenge. But, at first, it was just nothing but scary.”

His concerns were allayed when he discovered that the three leads – Jason Sudeikis, Jason Bateman and Charlie Day – were game for anything.

Anders said: “That’s what’s so valuable about having guys that already embody these characters – they started this a long time before we did. And they’re just crazy, funny guys with all kinds of funny ideas.”

 The sequel follows the misadventures of the bungling trio – Dale, Nick and Kurt – whose startup business runs into problems, which somehow leads to kidnappings.

Jennifer Aniston and Kevin Spacey return to their roles as horrible bosses, with new additions to the cast such as Chris Pine, Christoph Waltz, Jonathan Banks and Keegan-Michael Key. 

The blockbuster comedy, with its raunchy and sarcastic humour, was a veritable hit in 2011, directed and co-written by Anders. 

‘Horrible Bosses 2’ is not the only movie he has worked on this year. Anders was one of six writers credited on the new ‘Dumb and Dumber To’ movie starring Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels. He also directed ‘Sex Drive’ and ‘She’s Out of My League’, and wrote for ‘Hot Tub Time Machine’ and ‘We’re The Millers’.

He tells inSing more about working with his star-studded cast.

Can you talk about the chemistry among Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day and Jason Bateman, and why they fit together so well? 

In a way, it’s the sound of their voices.  All three guys do voiceover work. They have three really distinct voices. One of the reasons that I was really excited about Chris Pine coming into the mix is because he also has a very distinct voice. 

Jason Bateman talks in a very measured and very specific way.  Jason Sudeikis is very enthusiastic. Charlie, of course, is all over the place – flipping out one moment and being quieter the next.  Those three voices together have a great music to them.

Tell us more about Chris Pine’s character Rex.

I think we were, sort of, the most proud of this Rex character in our first draft of the script. What I liked the most about Rex was that we really wanted him to not be all bad. Regardless of the things that he does in the story, Rex, in my mind, genuinely likes the guys. He’s having a good time with them. He feels camaraderie. He just immediately embodied this guy, who just loves being a jerk.

What was it like writing for Jennifer Aniston’s Dr Julia Harris and where is her character going in this movie?

Jen went quite far in the first movie, so it was already fun to write.  And then when we sat down with her, much to my surprise and delight, her notes on the first draft of the script asked, “Can we push it further? Can I be crazier? Can I say crazier stuff?” So that made it really fun.

A lot of that exchange between Jason Bateman and Jen was stuff that Jason came up with, and Jen was all too happy to sink her teeth into it. She was up for anything. 

Having Christoph Waltz play a part – what was it like for you to direct him in that role?

It was very scary and a little daunting to bring him in to do some of the silly things. When you watch the film, there is the very short fantasy sequence. Maybe it’s a minute-and-a-half, or two minutes long. Christoph is in a lot of that.

But that scene also has a lot of fancier shots with motion control, and things that take longer to get. Poor Christoph would have to show up on set and he would have one line and we would just be flying cameras around him all day. I felt like I was in a constant state of apologising to him.

He couldn’t have been nicer. He couldn’t have been more professional. His job is to come in and be the heavy, the mysterious force of nature (on screen). Had it been somebody who didn’t have the presence that he has, it wouldn’t have come across as well. 

Jamie Foxx reprise his role as tough guy MF Jones

Were Jamie Foxx and the other returning actors game when you went to them and described the work they were going to do in this movie?

Yes, they were really game. That was one of my concerns.  Everybody was having a good time. As we worked on the script, Jamie’s role got extended. I can’t remember whose idea it was to have Jamie show up at the garage. I know it wasn’t mine. It might have been Charlie’s.

To get Jamie’s character out of his booth and put him into the car chase was a lot of fun. Jamie has an improv background, so he could go toe-to-toe with the other guys. We have 12- or 13-minute takes of the guys just riffing with Jamie. We could find some great gems in those tapes. 

Did you have a specific tone or energy that you wanted to create on set, or did the energy just kind of erupt? 

When you’re making a movie, it’s not fun every minute of the day the way that Hollywood likes to portray it… I prefer as relaxed of an environment as possible on set, even down to the people we hire on the crew. We try to hire a crew that is really friendly.

I just believe that when people are doing comedy, it’s easier for them to go to more places if the set feels less constrained and more relaxed. If people are genuinely enjoying themselves, it has a way of getting up on the screen and the audiences feel it.

The opening scene is really funny. Did you have any kind of game plan about making the audience laugh right off the bat to set the stage for the rest of the film? 

When comedians do a set, it’s crucially important to have a big opener and big closer, but if you open with an okay joke and then go to a great joke, it’s not going to work. You need to open big and get people in the mood to laugh.

We thought if people don’t laugh pretty hard at that, we’re going to have to rethink the beginning. We thought the shower scene would be our first legitimate laugh. But it didn’t work out that way.  Charlie staring into the camera was our very first big laugh. By the time we hit the shower scene, people were already ready to laugh. Then that scene really killed. 

‘Horrible Bosses 2’ is now showing in cinemas

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Horrible Bosses 2
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