Nerdist Interviews SEX TAPE Director Jake Kasdan
By Clarke Wolfe on July 20, 2014
Sex Tape, the outrageous new comedy starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel and directed by Jake Kasdan, is the heartfelt story of a married couple attempting to get the spark in their relationship back by boning on camera, losing track of the footage and trying to retrieve it before the video ruins their personal and professional lives. Nerdist had the opportunity to speak with Kasdan about reuniting Diaz and Segel after the success of Bad Teacher, finding some heartfelt moments in an outlandish sex comedy and watching his leading man grow from Freaks and Geeks to where he is now.
Kasdan, who directed Segel and Diaz in the hit comedy Bad Teacher was excited about working with the pair again, as he explained to us, saying, “One of the big appeals of this movie was the opportunity to potentially put those two back together. I really loved working with them on the first movie. We’d had a great time together and I just loved what their chemistry was like and when this came along, all of us involved in that movie kind of felt that.” Kasdan continued, “It wouldn’t be retreading the same territory at all because the characters are so different because the relationship is so different but hopefully a continuation of what I was so into on the first one and it was that and exceeded my expectations. It’s definitely a lot more intimate and because we all really like each other and because they’re completely game and actually friends that was a great part of it.”
In addition to the over-the-top moments and outrageous comedy that is ever present in a movie like Sex Tape, at its core is a really nice love story about two people who love each other very much. Was this element something that attracted Kasdan, also known for his work on Fox’s show New Girl, to the project? “It’s very much something I was interested in and something that I was very focused on. Figuring out how to within the building of this big comedy idea, a couple makes a sex tape with all the best of intentions and it gets away from them and trying to get it back, I felt like there was an opportunity to do something that is in fact quietly sophisticated than you might expect and then sort of make a movie about this couple.”
Kasdan recalls one moment on set where he felt that the heartfelt relationship between the two lead characters shone through despite all of the ridiculous hijinks. “I remember they were in bed together and doing one of those big long scenes and I remember thinking to myself this really feels like a couple running around their house trying to have sex! (laughs) And that was always sort of what we had hoped for it is that it could have that familiarity to it. Where this material gets funny to me is not in the titillating part of it of like, beautiful movie stars touching each other, it’s like the ugly reality of what all that is like and actually looks like and all of that.”
Sex Tape co-star Jason Segel and Nicholas Stoller, who also worked together on scripting The Muppets, helped write the screenplay for the movie. Having directed Segel as far back as Freaks and Geeks, was it satisfying for Kasdan to work with him not only as an actor but as a writer as well? Said Kasdan, “Jason is someone I’ve been working with since he was seventeen and he was brilliant then and had a lot of the same qualities, less refined and less experienced, obviously. But the way that he’s so natural and sort of effortlessly real and funny and finds the small details of the truth of every moment and earns his laughs that way, that was all evident already when he was really, really young and he’s only gotten more sophisticated and stronger since then and working with him is a blast. We come from a shared sensibility because of the show when we were much younger and I love working with him as a writer as well as an actor.”
Sex Tape, starring Cameron Diaz, Jason Segel, Ellie Kemper and Rob Corddry and directed by Jake Kasdan, is in theaters now. For more from the stars of Sex Tape watch Nerdist’s interview with Diaz, Segel and Kemper right here!