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Will Gluck Makes Comedy Look “Easy,” Eh?

Will Gluck Makes Comedy Look “Easy,” Eh? (photo)

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It’s interesting that barely anyone kisses in the film, let alone have sex, even though it’s all the characters obsess about. Why hold back?

To me, the build-up to sex, to potential sex and the aftermath of sex, talking about it is 99.9 percent of the actual sexual act. The actual sexual act, especially in high school, is seconds long. It’s not attractive, no one has fun, they want to get the hell out of there as quick as they can. No one ever said to you, “The best sex I ever had? When I was 15.” So it’s all about, in this society, talking about sex, so the act was not important. The physicality of it had zero importance to me and I really wanted to show that.

I remember how “Juno” got caught up in the culture wars and I think this film could have that potential if it’s a big enough hit, given that its heroine is abstinent and her enemies are religiously motivated. Is that something you considered while making it? [mild spoiler ahead]

Here’s the two things: one, I’m not preaching abstinence at all. What I’m preaching is mind your own business. I’m preaching that your reputation should not be based on your sexual activity and my favorite thing at the end of the movie, [Olive] says, “I might have sex now. I might have sex six months from now or my wedding day, but you know what? It’s none of your goddamn business.” That’s what I’m preaching. It’s not about sex.


The other thing I’m angry at myself a little bit is that I’m not taking a stand against evangelical Christians. What I was trying to portray was evangelicals — zealots. The adjective, not the noun. And I tried to pull it back as much as I could in editing, but if I could do it again, I wouldn’t ever single out a religion because to me, it’s not that. To me, it’s just the holier than thou people that at such a young age think they know what’s going on and they have no idea what’s going on, so I never intended to make it a specific religion and I kind of apologize for that.

On a lighter note, some of the guys who pay Olive for fake sex bear familiar names for comedy nerds — “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs”‘ writer/directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord, “Sanjay” Chandrasekhar (“Super Troopers”) — and directors Andrew Fleming (“Dick”) and Rawson Marshall Thurber (“Dodgeball”) make cameos. How did that work its way into the script?

Chris and Phil are good friends of mine, so I like to use real names in things. Andy Fleming has been in every one of my movies because I always like to put directors in movies because Andy puts me in his movies because it’s a really fun experience to go to the other side for a second and see how the other side of it is, so I love doing that. But if anyone has to pay for sex, it’s Phil Lord. And you can print that. [laughs]

There was a recent shot of you directing Justin Timberlake and Shaun White on the set of “Friends With Benefits.” Given your love of pop culture, was that a bit mindblowing?

There is a whole scene with Shaun and Justin, and it is funny with Shaun and Justin because Shaun is playing Shaun, and [Justin’s] basically playing Spencer Tracy. Justin’s incredible. He’s such an insanely talented guy and after “Social Network,” people will be like “Whaaa?” So when this movie comes out, he’ll be a bona fide actor.


Speaking of that, you got quite the amazing cast for both “Easy A” and “Friends With Benefits.” Was it like shooting a different movie every day when you have so many actors in small, but pivotal roles?

Lisa [Kudrow], Patty [Clarkson] and Stanley [Tucci], they all worked a week, five days. And Thomas Haden Church worked a week too. Emma, every day, she’d get up and get to work with another Academy Award-nominated actor and it was amazing to watch. It was so fun to watch and it never got old because it was like “say goodbye to Thomas Haden Church, and [here’s] Patty Clarkson, everybody!” So it was great.

[It’s similar] on this movie here I’m doing now, because of Justin and Mila and Woody Harrelson and then Richard Jenkins and Patty Clarkson and Jason Segel and Rashida [Jones], they do this little thing, so it’s always different. It keeps everything fresh. The one thing I have figured out is that if you schedule it smartly, and we have people that are brilliant at this, everything can work out. If you schedule it smartly and if people want to do it, it’ll work out.

“Easy A” opens wide on September 17th.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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