Sometimes the love between two people is stronger than anything. And when those two people are men in a “bromantic” relationship, the outcome is usually hilarious. With roots in the never-ending slew of reality (in particular, Brody Jenner’s MTV show), bromance will have its turn on the big screen when “I Love You, Man” hits theaters Friday.
The plot follows Peter Klaven (Paul Rudd, “Role Models”) who just proposed to the woman of his dreams, Zooey (Rashida Jones, “The Office”), and fortunately, she accepted. But proposing was the easy part. The road to marriage has its share of obstacles, notably Klaven’s obvious lack of a best man. Or rather, a lack of male friends in general. Near desperate to find a fix, Klaven finds himself going out on “man dates” in order to find his best man.
After a string of horrifying “dates,” Klaven finally finds compatibility with the brash and obnoxious Sydney Fife (Jason Segal, “Forgetting Sarah Marshall”). However, when Klaven’s new fianc�e clashes with the new best man, hilarity ensues. A recent conference call with Rudd and Segal shed some light on the bromantic film.
“I think it’s a long time coming that you’ve seen a good male platonic comedy,” Segal said about the movie. “And that’s what we’re going for, and we got as close to the homoerotic line as possible without crossing it. Which I think we both found comedic-ly satisfying.”
Rudd elaborated on Segal’s statement by discussing the novelty of the film.
“Yeah, you know, it is true. But it just seems to be the word of the moment, bro-mantic, because there have really been films throughout the decade that have fallen into that category, but are never called bro-mantic.”
For Rudd and Segal, the bromance didn’t begin on “I Love You, Man.” They’ve worked together in “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” a film Segal wrote, and “Knocked Up.” Also in common is their individual work with director Judd Apatow, who directed “Knocked Up,” and worked with a young Segal in cult favorite “Freaks and Geeks.” Needless to say, it didn’t take much preparation to play best friends.
“Thankfully we knew each other and so there was, you know, already a little bit of built in familiarity. And we made several boner jokes before we even started this one,” said Segal. “So you know we already spoke the same language a little bit.”
Although the conference call may have been intended to highlight the film, the conversation very quickly turned into back and forth banter between the two leads.
“I wasn’t joking either and when I say boner jokes and language, it’s an actual language called err… boner-est. We both speak boner-est,” said Segal.
“Yeah, it’s a lot like sign language unfortunately, except without the hands,” said Rudd.
“Like sign language without the hands. Really it’s very hard to just spelling out one letter.”
“Yeah, there is really just a couple … that’s an ‘L’ … nope, it’s an ‘I!’ It’s an easy language to learn.”
When the conversation did return to the film, the guys candidly discussed their favorite part of filming. Unsurprisingly, it was a bonding scene the two shared.
“They took us to the best fish taco restaurant in Venus and the director told us ‘Look, the goal is just to look like you guys are slowly starting to like each other, don’t really worry about a script,’” said Segal. “And then they just gave us four hours of fish tacos and beer and we just had to talk and be funny and enjoy each others company. It was very, very easy and very, very fun.”
Aside from writing and starring in the film “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” Segal was noted for breaking film taboo by getting naked for the part and letting viewers get a full frontal glimpse. Paul Rudd is also no stranger to the concept, since he let his own behind be filmed in “The 40 Year Old Virgin.” And when discussing the issue, one thing was certain:
“Let me tell you something,” said Segal. “Between my dick and your ass, we’re pretty funny.”
“I Love You, Man” will premiere in theaters tomorrow.