Melissa McCarthy”s new comedy had her getting very familiar with co-star Kristen Bell.
In The Boss, which opens in theaters today, there”s a scene that has the two actresses in a lengthy session of feeling each other up (with their shirts still on – don”t get too excited guys). Surely making that scene all the weirder was the fact that their director was Ben Falcone, McCarthy”s husband.
Falcone directed the film about Michelle Darnell, a character McCarthy created for The Groundlings. After Darnell, a wealthy media mogul, loses everything when she”s convicted for insider trading, she turns to former assistant Claire (Bell), who reluctantly takes her in. While Darnell lives in Claire”s apartment, she starts a for-profit girls club fundraising enterprise with Claire”s daughter, putting them in ruthless competition with a Girl Scouts-esque group as they sell Claire”s delicious brownies.
Bell talked with HitFix about that intimate feeling-up scene, about how Game of Thrones actor Peter Dinklage showed his funny side on The Boss set, and revealed whether we can expect a sequel to the video she made with her husband, Dax Shepard, where they lip synced Toto”s “Africa” during their Africa vacation.
HitFix: Which of your co-stars in The Boss most often made it difficult for you to keep a straight face and had you filling up the blooper reel with bursts of laughter?
Kristen Bell: Oh wow, definitely Melissa. She is such an exquisite comedian. The only person who makes her break is Ben, is her husband. So it”s really sweet when that actually happens and when you see her set her into a fit of giggles. It”s like you're just witnessing this tangible love between the two of them, which is so special.
I broke at – oh, almost anything. There were a lot of funny people. Tyler Labine is really, really funny and so incredibly charming. Tim [Simons] and Peter [Dinklage] were as well. But Melissa takes the cake.
Tell me more about working with Peter Dinklage.
Peter Dinklage had this entire set eating out of the palm of his hand. Because he is charisma personified. In between takes, he”s reading the New York Times and barely listening to the conversation everyone”s having but then adds in the funniest quip of all time. He”s a pretty effortless comedian, and I don”t think a lot of people have seen that side of him. He”s done mostly dramatic work. People will be very pleasantly surprised at what a funny bone he has. And smart comedians are the best types of comedians, and he”s so smart.
The scene when you and Melissa end up essentially feeling each other up – I gotta know what kind of direction you were getting from Ben, from Melissa”s husband.
I don”t think he gave us any direction for that scene. That scene was so self-explanatory. Melissa and I had a conversation ahead of time saying what”s kosher and what”s not, and we both said, “Anything goes.” And it got real intimate real quick. And throughout the course of the movie, I cleaned up her drool, I saw her vagina, and I slapped her boobies around. So, yes, we”re great friends.
People in your own life who are like Michelle Darnell, who have big egos and treat the people who work for them like crap – how do you handle them?
I don”t surround myself with people like that. I”m sure I”ve come in contact with them, but I get an immediate gut reaction about somebody, and if I feel that you”re sort of mean in your heart – life”s too short. I don”t stick around.
When the new Ghostbusters trailer came out, Melissa McCarthy and her co-stars were getting a lot of malicious comments directed at them online – were you around with Melissa while that was going on?
I wasn”t. But don”t see it if you don”t wanna see it…. Nobody has a gun to your head making you go to the movies. If you wanna watch something else, watch something else. That”s the beauty of movies, that hundreds of them exist every year.
You typically play the straight man (straight woman) in your comedies. Are you ever seeking out roles that led you get wackier, or not?
I think it”s the thing I'm most qualified for. I love being around funny people, and I love jokes, but there are a lot of people that are funnier than me. This dynamic was perfect with Melissa because she needs a straight person that understands comedy. I understand comedy and don”t execute it nearly as brilliantly as she does. So I”m just, in all honesty, happy to be here.
You got to show your goofy side a bit in that “Africa” lip sync video. I think the Internet wants an encore.
You know, we”ve been angry about a couple missed opportunities. ‘Cause we went to Utah, and we were like, “Dang it, we should have found a song about Utah.” We went to Austin, and we were like, “There's so many songs about Texas we should have done!” So I think we will – we”ll do another vacation music video.
You could go to Australia and do Men at Work”s “Down Under.”
More from HitFix's interview with Kristen Bell:
‘Veronica Mars”: Kristen Bell on why she switched camps from Team Piz to Team Logan
Kristen Bell has a ‘Frozen 2″ update for us
The Boss is now in theaters.