After I Think You Should Leave instantly became a viral hit for Netflix, spawning hundreds of memes in its wake, Season Two of the Tim Robinson sketch comedy series pulled off the impressive feat of being just as good, if not arguably better, than the first season. However, a new interview with casting director Leslie Woo reveals that the show almost lost one of its best Season Two sketches thanks to COVID.
Actor Biff Wiff‘s portrayal of an unfiltered Santa Claus who scores an acting role as loose cannon cop, Detective Crashmore, nearly got cut before Wiff even had a chance to audition for the role. Fortunately, Woo decided to press on with virtual auditions, and well, the whole thing was cosmic gumbo. Via IndieWire:
The process that eventually led to Biff Wiff (who’s gone on to have a standout year with other parts in “Dave” and “Everything Everywhere All at Once”) was one that nearly stopped in March 2020 before it even had the chance to start.
“The first day that I was going to audition the Santa Clause role was the day before everything shut down. Knowing that we had a bunch of older gentlemen coming in the next day, we shut things down a day early,” Woo said. “So I was doing live self-tapes and Skypes with them simultaneously. The experience of that was so wonderful and amazing, just to be able to talk to these guys for a minute and get to know them, but that was definitely one of the roles that presented challenges from a logistical standpoint.”
As for the magic of Wiff’s performance as a profane Santa discovering the joys of his acting rate, turns out the dude was channeling himself and playing it as “real as I possibly could without giving [a] totally flat reading.” In an interview with Uproxx‘s Vince Mancini, Wiff said that his process even earned its on nickname on the set.
“The director, Zach was a really nice guy. They’d give me a lot of freedom,” Wiff said. “Almost every shot was, okay, you’ve done it, so we’ve got what we want, do it like you want. And they were real good about that. They just started calling it ‘The Wiff Way.'” And if you don’t like it, well..