SAN DIEGO – Bill Hader is making a sharp left turn for his next two projects.
The former “Saturday Night Live” cast member sat down with me to discuss his upcoming animated sequel “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2” at Comic-Con this week, and in the process I made sure to ask about his next movie “The Skeleton Twins,” in which he plays the estranged twin brother of his former “SNL” co-star Kristen Wiig. Which all sounds pretty funny, except that it’s a drama.
“It has comedic elements to it, but it’s very grounded,” he told me of the film, which also stars Luke Wilson, Ty Burrell and Mark Duplass. “It was one of those experiences where…I was doing the movie at the same time I was doing ‘SNL,’ and so I was a little worn out, and it could’ve been a really terrible time. And it was one of…I haven’t seen the movie, I hope the movie’s good. I’m hearing it’s great from people who have seen it…it’s totally different from anything I’ve ever done.”
So what was it like playing drama with fellow funny person Wiig?
“The nice thing is that we’re kind of estranged siblings, and Kris and I have such a tight relationship, you know?” said Hader. “Cause we’ve been with each other for so long. So it was so easy working with her on that.”
Also on tap for the actor is “The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby,” a two-part “Rashomon”-style drama film written and directed by Ned Benson that stars James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain as a married couple living in New York whose relationship is threatened by a tragic event.
“One movie’s all from his standpoint, and it’s shot kinda on Steadicam and it’s very cold, and then you see the other movie is from her point of view, and it’s shot hand-held and it’s very warm,” Hader told me of the unusual shoot. “And so you would do scenes where you would do – ‘ok, here’s a scene from his movie,’ and you would do it, and so it’d be me and the other actors, like Viola Davis and William Hurt and all these great people, you would do the scene and then they would go, ‘okay, now we’re gonna do the version in her movie.’ So I would change my shirt, and I would sit kinda the same place and you would approximate the lines a little bit so you’re kinda going, ‘oh she remembered it this way while he remembered it that way.'”
To hear more from Hader – including what it was like to work with “Eleanor Rigby” co-stars Chastain and McAvoy – you can watch the full interview in the video above.