This browser is supported only in Windows 10 and above.


Julie Delpy on “2 Days in Paris”

Julie Delpy on “2 Days in Paris” (photo)

Posted by on

French writer-actress-songbird Julie Delpy has probably been associated most with American film, and not only for her “Before Sunset” Oscar nomination in 2005 (for co-screenwriting!). Still, she is French, so it could be argued that having a bicultural identity has allowed her a more objective view of how both countries and their citizens can misbehave and act cruel. Adding to her list of hyphenates, Delpy the feature director and editor also co-stars in “2 Days in Paris,” a self-described “mean-spirited” relationship comedy that addresses said observations on modern-day culture clashes of the social, political, age and gender varieties. Adam Goldberg ever-neurotically stars as jaded New York designer Jack, who has just had a lousy Venice getaway with his photog girlfriend Marion (Delpy). On the way home, they’re stopping off in the titular city for said duration, an attempted vacation corrective and couples rekindling that invariably makes them crazier, crankier and more jealous. It’s not as “Before Sunset” as the title might seem, since language barriers, overbearing folks, flirty ex-beaus and other annoyances turn what might’ve been “Meet the Fockers” into a biting bicker-fest of the Woody Allen variety. And of course, it’s political. Considering that two of Delpy’s early screen roles were in Jean-Luc Godard’s “Détective” and “King Lear,” it’s not surprising that her first narrative feature would be filled with thinly disguised references to her personal beliefs.

Before the interview, you seemed surprised that all of your film’s publicists were women. Are there major differences in how a film is promoted in America compared to Europe?

It’s actually quite similar in France, though when you do a TV show, you’re terrified because the host might insult you. It’s in fashion right now that the host, to make the show cool, will trash you to the ground. I go to shows in France literally shaking in terror, and I’m never scared of anything like that because people are usually civilized, even if they don’t like the film. I’m not even scared of criticism, but when they lash at you, it’s terrifying. I’m always lucky somehow, but it’s happened to a lot of other artists. It’s publicity for their work, so I guess it’s worth it. But if I knew someone was going to say horrible things to me, I wouldn’t go. I have to say that in America, journalists are nicer and more respectful. They can be in France, but some are not always nice. Like the French, they’re not very nice people in general. [laughs] I actually love France. It is my country of birth, it’s a lot of fun, and even when people are grumpy, it makes me laugh.

Certainly nobody is safe from being ridiculed in your film.

No! Men, women, Americans, French — they all get it. I don’t hate the French or Americans or men or women. I’m not really angry at people, but I think it’s funny when people are mean to one another. [laughs] I think the beginning of the film sets the tone. [Jack is] an American sending other Americans to the suburbs just to get ahead of the taxi line. It doesn’t mean they’re bad because, in the end, I still like the people that I’m describing, even though they’re not very nice. Marion is crazy, hysterical, lashing at people. And Jack is neurotic and obnoxious in so many ways. The parents are obnoxious, too. The sister is a bitch, but I love her. I’m just describing them in all their flaws.

Where were you living when anti-French sentiments were in the air, circa 2003?

I was in California, so “freedom fries” were not a big hit. California has a lot of liberal people and most Americans I knew were embarrassed: “Oh my god, this is horrifying!” But it’s not one America or France. It’s important to be reminded of that all the time. I wasn’t embarrassed or shocked, more amused.

You express some of that amusement by making political jabs throughout the film. Not to oversimplify, but is it twice as hard to get your film out there in a polarized sociopolitical climate?

I can’t help it. For me, it’s important because I have [personal beliefs] in my life. So why not put them in the movie? Right away, I’m pretty clear where I stand. I face the same problems in France. The French distributors were horrified by the racist taxi driver scene and the ex-boyfriend pedophile; [it was] ex-colonial mentality. They wanted me to cut it out because it’s too offensive to the French, “it’ll never work here,” people will get upset, blah blah. Some journalists were offended, but most people didn’t mind because it’s a reality. It’s not a lie. If you don’t want to show the truth, that’s problematic if you can’t express that in movies.

For a lot of films here, you have to respect all demographics and you don’t want to offend anyone. You just want to get as many people as you can to go to the movies, but I think that’s bullshit. For example, 9/11 movies. Some people will not like those films and will not go see them. So what? 50 million people could still potentially see these films. Mine is the same. It’s liberal-friendly, though I know Republicans who saw the film and liked it. They’re conservative, but they think Bush has made huge mistakes throughout his entire time in power. So it depends, but I don’t think it’s [for] hardcore Bush supporters. And it’s not even a liberal movie because it makes fun of everyone, you know what I mean? I tried to make a movie [in which] I was free to express whatever I wanted. Because it was such a small budget, I was allowed to talk about subject matters that I don’t see in other films. I want to say things in a way that can be kind of crude. “It is a blowjob that brought down America’s last chance at a healthy democracy” is a crude line, but it might be true.

Watch More

A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

Posted by on
GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

Watch More

WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

Posted by on

Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…


IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.


IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).


IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.


IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

Watch More

Reality? Check.

Baroness For Life

Baroness von Sketch Show is available for immediate consumption.

Posted by on
GIFs via Giphy

Baroness von Sketch Show is snowballing as people have taken note of its subtle and not-so-subtle skewering of everyday life. The New York Times, W Magazine, and Vogue have heaped on the praise, but IFC had a few more probing questions…

IFC: To varying degrees, your sketches are simply scripted examples of things that actually happen. What makes real life so messed up?

Aurora: Hubris, Ego and Selfish Desires and lack of empathy.

Carolyn: That we’re trapped together in the 3rd Dimension.

Jenn: 1. Other people 2. Other people’s problems 3. Probably something I did.

IFC: A lot of people I know have watched this show and realized, “Dear god, that’s me.” or “Dear god, that’s true.” Why do people have their blinders on?

Aurora: Because most people when you’re in the middle of a situation, you don’t have the perspective to step back and see yourself because you’re caught up in the moment. That’s the job of comedians is to step back and have a self-awareness about these things, not only saying “You’re doing this,” but also, “You’re not the only one doing this.” It’s a delicate balance of making people feel uncomfortable and comforting them at the same time.


IFC: Unlike a lot of popular sketch comedy, your sketches often focus more on group dynamics vs iconic individual characters. Why do you think that is and why is it important?

Meredith: We consider the show to be more based around human dynamics, not so much characters. If anything we’re more attracted to the energy created by people interacting.

Jenn: So much of life is spent trying to work it out with other people, whether it’s at work, at home, trying to commute to work, or even on Facebook it’s pretty hard to escape the group.

IFC: Are there any comedians out there that you feel are just nailing it?

Aurora: I love Key and Peele. I know that their show is done and I’m in denial about it, but they are amazing because there were many times that I would imagine that Keegan Michael Key was in the scene while writing. If I could picture him saying it, I knew it would work. I also kind of have a crush on Jordan Peele and his performance in Big Mouth. Maya Rudolph also just makes everything amazing. Her puberty demon on Big Mouth is flawless. She did an ad for 7th generation tampons that my son, my husband and myself were singing around the house for weeks. If I could even get anything close to her career, I would be happy. I’m also back in love with Rick and Morty. I don’t know if I have a crush on Justin Roiland, I just really love Rick (maybe even more than Morty). I don’t have a crush on Jerry, the dad, but I have a crush on Chris Parnell because he’s so good at being Jerry.



IFC: If you could go back in time and cast yourselves in any sitcom, which would it be and how would it change?

Carolyn: I’d go back in time and cast us in The Partridge Family.  We’d make an excellent family band. We’d have a laugh, break into song and wear ruffled blouses with velvet jackets.  And of course travel to all our gigs on a Mondrian bus. I feel really confident about this choice.

Meredith: Electric Mayhem from The Muppet Show. It wouldn’t change, they were simply perfect, except… maybe a few more vaginas in the band.

Binge the entire first and second seasons of Baroness von Sketch Show now on and the IFC app.

Watch More