Channing Tatum and the “Magic Mike” cast tease the truth behind the fiction


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Fans might flock to see “Magic Mike” because it’s a movie about male strippers, but they’ll be surprised to find that it’s actually about much more than that. It shouldn’t come as a surprise though, since director Stephen Soderbergh has made a name for himself making rich character dramas like “Erin Brockovich” and “Traffic” as well as fun flicks like the “Ocean’s Eleven” movies. “Magic Mike” is a healthy mix of the two, and it turns out that it was just as much of a pleasure to make the film as it was to watch it.

“Stephen is really great at walking the line between commercial, in the sense that people will want to see it, and really artistic art house. That’s what this is. This is a movie that is really strange and about a strange concept, and yet it’s relatable, and it’s big. Its bigger concept is not just this little world. It’s really about humans,” Cody Horn said when IFC caught up with her at the Los Angeles Film Festival red carpet for the movie. “There’s a lot of heart in this movie and there’s a lot of issues that we all face every day.”

Part of the reason that the movie has so much heart is because it’s based on leading man Channing Tatum‘s real life experiences as a stripper in Florida. But don’t expect everything you see on the big screen to be something that happened in Tatum’s real life. In fact, he said that most of the movie is fiction.

“The only thing that’s factual is me being 18 and being in Florida, I dropped out of college and playing football, and literally started going into this abyss of a world and just sort of lived it up for about eight months,” he said on the red carpet. “I don’t think anybody would really want to see the autobiographical [version]. Like it would, ugh, that’s just gross.”

It’s clear from watching the men perform that Tatum is the only one who has real experience with stripping and dancing. Adam Rodriguez quite enthusiastically throws himself into the routine while Joe Manganiello and Matt Bomer clearly love getting to perform the dirty dances. Then there’s Matthew McConaughey, whose on stripping scene puts everyone else to shame. But there’s a good reason that viewers won’t see much of former WWE wrestler Kevin Nash.

“At this point I’m so beat up from 25 years of wrestling, my body’s so beat up that it was a grind just to be on my feet for 12 hours, let alone moving and even jumping off the stage. I was like, ‘Really?'” he told IFC with a laugh. “But it was such a great camaraderie, the energy was so good between the cast members, the guys are great. I’ve made some long-term friends on set, so it was very special.”

Betsy Brandt, best known as Marie from AMC’s “Breaking Bad,” only has one scene in the movie as a banker who denies Tatum’s character a loan. Brandt said she regretted not being able to film any scenes that involved the men stripping, and joked that she suggested that Soderbergh add one in on her behalf.

“I asked if I could be in another scene when they’re stripping, just counting my bank money,” Brandt said. “I told Channing if, you know, he needed to take his clothes off for rehearsal, everybody has a process, and I respect actors and their craft and everyone has their own way of working…. no I’m kidding.”

One of the more interesting elements of “Magic Mike” is the fact that instead of objectifying its leading women, it puts its leading men on display. Both Horn and Brandt said they were surprised and happy to find such good female roles available in Hollywood.

“I think that actresses in Hollywood kill for roles like this. There’s not a lot in our age group for that and it was just an honor to get it. I love the role. I absolutely love the role, and I love the movie,” Horn said. Brandt added, “I think it’s great. I think they should have to take their clothes off for a while instead of us.”

That being said, Tatum’s answer when asked what parts of the movie female fans will love the most was unsurprising. “McConaughey’s scene,” he said. “All McConaughey’s scenes.”

What elements of Magic Mike have you most intrigued? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar


IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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