Can you believe that Bad Moms hits theaters next Friday, July 29, 2016? Have you made plans with friends to see it? I have a date set with my mom and sisters and plan to head to the local theater that serves drinks. HEY! Every mom deserves a girl’s night out and this is going to be ours. DRINKS ALL AROUND!
Back in sunny California we were partaking in some fun photos, still sipping on drinks (okay, I had switched to water by then), and waiting for our last session of interviews to begin at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills. After sitting down with Mila Kunis and Kathryn Hahn and Christina Applegate and Annie Mumolo I was excited to pick the brain of the masterminds behind the film. This excitement was intensified when I reminded myself that the film writers were male!
We were given our two minute notice and shuffled back to our seats … okay, there was a tray of mimosas and I picked up one more … and awaited the arrival of Producer, Suzanne Todd and Writers/Directors, Jon Lucas and Scott Moore. One look at this motley crew (I kid!), I knew this was going to be good.
We all threw around a quick hello and waves and got right down to business because apparently I wasn’t the only one that had questions about the film and the inspiration(s) behind the storyline.
Are you wondering how two men wrote a movie that aimed to attract a female audience? A movie about mommyhood? ME TOO! Here’s what we found out.
Question: Who was your main source, in terms of writing, of mom culture and getting into the minds of moms?
Scott Moore: So, Jon and I are both married, and we both have two kids. When we were trying to come up with a movie, we’re just basically sitting at home. We each have a home office and we’re sitting at home racking our brains, and just watching our wives in this like stressed-out life trying to be a great parent.
And we’re like maybe that’s a good thing for a movie. The inspiration was basically our wives, and we spent a lot of time sort of talking to them and talking to their friends and throwing parties and having a bunch of moms over and a bunch of red wine, and stories would just start flowing.
Jon Lucas: It’s not super hard to get moms to talk about how they feel about being a mom.
It was great. It was actually really in some ways the best part about it. I actually feel like I understand my wife far better for the process because so much happens that I don’t notice, if that makes any sense, or I don’t see. And–.
Scott Moore: –A husband who doesn’t notice things.
Jon Lucas: Yes.
Scott Moore: Surprising.
Jon Lucas: But, I think the movie was great fun, and I knew some of the absurdity, and like the Gwendolyn [Christina Applegate], like the list of foods you’re not supposed to eat, which, to a dad, I was like I don’t understand lists like this. I don’t know why the school sends us things like this.
I don’t know why I get 50 e-mails day, and there’s just so many rules now that didn’t seem to make a lot of sense to me. When we got into it deeper, we began to see how absurd this world got. That’s when we realized that there’s really a movie here, probably more than one movie in here.
Suzanne Todd: How many of you have had that similar bake sale thing where you get a crazy e-mail that says you have to bring food that has no ingredients in it, right? It feels like everyone’s had that.
Jon Lucas: Yes.
Question: What do you hope that people will take away from this movie?
Scott Moore: The big one for me is just to do less and that doing less is okay. Maybe this is a uniquely dad point of view, but our wives and all the moms that are in our social circle that I know work so hard, and they do so many things. Is there a way to maybe do 5 percent less and spend 5 percent more time taking care of yourself or hanging out with your kids or just having a little more fun in your life?
I think it’s gotten so crazy what the expectations are. Again, it makes for great comedy. So, I’m grateful for that. We got a movie out of it. But, it’s irrational how much moms are expected to do.
Jon Lucas: Yes.
Suzanne Todd: They have that Nike motto that says like just do it. We joke that we wanted to make t-shirts that said just do less, right? Or, just do less and enjoy it more, right? Because enjoying time with your kids is more important than making the perfect lunch.
Scott Moore: Yes. We are definitely not experts in parenting. Jon and I definitely don’t know what the fuck we’re doing being a parent. But, we think that that’s part of it. And we’re not trying to put out a message, but if there is any sort of message, it’s you don’t have to be perfect.
Question: As a female producer in Hollywood, a very powerful one, what attracted you to this project beyond it being just a laugh-out-loud, funny comedy?
Suzanne Todd: Honestly, and it sounds lame because they’re sitting next to me, but these two guys. You know, I’ve worked with a lot of people. Obviously, I’ve made a lot of movies. An interviewer yesterday pointed out to me that it’s been 30 years since I graduated from film school and started making movies. Thank you very much, or not.
Jon and Scott had written this incredibly funny script that, again, you can’t believe was written by two guys because it’s so accurate. And again, credit to both of their wives, who I’ve gotten to know and are amazing people and are obviously like–.
Jon Lucas: –Yes, they really should be here. It’s a shame they had to work today–.
Suzanne Todd: –The inspiration for the movie. I loved what they had to say. I love their method of working as directors. I love their language of speaking to each other. It’s just rare in Hollywood to have people that are really talented and also nice people. Sometimes you make a movie with somebody, and you’re thrown in the trenches, and you spend a lot of time together.
When the movie’s over, you can’t wait to not be in their lives anymore. And I really know that Jon and Scott will be in my life forever, and we’ll be friends and work together again. And I loved what they wanted to do with the movie.
Scott Moore: She was terrible. We’re never working with her again. No, I didn’t mean to cut you off. She’s awesome. Jon and I have been working in the industry for a long time. I think we’ve been writing together for 16 years.
And Suzanne by far is the best producer we’ve worked with. She’s been incredibly supportive and deals with all the like shitty politics and stuff that you don’t want to deal with or don’t have the bandwidth for. And she’s right. Like, after this movie, I’d love nothing more than to do 10 movies with her. She was great.
Question: How did you go about the process of actually selecting the actresses and putting them into their role?
Suzanne Todd: Kathryn Hahn was Carla. I mean really, everything that comes out of her mouth, which these guys wrote, Kathryn brought it to life.
Scott Moore: The casting process is complicated, and there’s a lot of alchemy and, luck and chance. It is sort of the most important part of filmmaking, if you cast your movie right, that’s more than half the battle. That’s like 90 percent of the movie.
If this movie is any good, it’s because of the cast, not because of what we were doing. They’re just amazing together and super talented. I don’t know the specific answer to your question, but we just started sitting down with actresses and talking to them about the script. Some of them just like got it and popped.
I remember sitting down with Kristen Bell and going you’re so Kiki. She was just so sweet and adorable and bouncy and innocent and silly that it’s like there was no question that that’s the role that defined her.
When we sat down with Christina Applegate, she’s like super talented, very funny, but also I was a little scared of her. So, I’m like that’s a Gwendolyn. Like, she has some balls to her that she’ll like run a room.
So, it just seemed obvious that she was going to be a great Gwendolyn.
Jon Lucas: Yes. Also in the casting process what was really fun was all the women in our movie are moms, which would seem obvious. But, we met with some actresses who weren’t, and it was always hilarious when they want to be in the movie, and they’d be like, well, I have a dog.
And you’re like, oh, that’s so different than having a kid. But, I can totally see how it’s a lot of responsibility when you have a dog. It seems like a lot of responsibility. Then you have children, and you’re like do we still have a dog? Is there a dog around here? I completely forgot about the dog.
It didn’t start out as our intention to hire only moms. But, the more we met with people, the more you’re like I don’t have to explain it to you. In fact, you’re explaining to me things that I probably wasn’t even aware of.
And that’s great. When they’re giving you stuff, it’s like there’s nothing better than that.
Scott Moore: Like, when Kathryn’s pitching a line, she’s like I would call him an ungrateful little shit, that that’s something that a mom would pitch. But, when you’re talking to actresses who aren’t moms, they’d be like, oh, I don’t think I would say that. Like, a mom would never say that line.
I think there’s a view of motherhood when you’re not a mom yet that’s way more Hallmark and sweet and, like, oh, motherhood is just like backlit, and everyone’s wearing dresses, and it’s just–and you’re like, no, no, no, no. Being a mom is like three in the morning. There’s shit on the wall. And there’s a kid cutting you with something.
It’s brutal. It’s a war. It’s a physical battle. And one of our execs had a great line, which is like people are like how did you do an R-rated movie about moms? And he has this great line. It’s like motherhood is an R-rated job. Motherhood is not PG. It’s certainly not G. Motherhood is dirty. There’s a lot of stuff. It’s messy. It’s not pretty and clean and your hair looks great.
It’s like it’s a battle. So–.
Suzanne Todd: –Well, if you’re lucky, part of the R-rated part of your job is like a Jay Hernandez in your life, right?
Jon Lucas: Yes.
Question: Talking about Jay Hernandez, how did you come up with the idea of hiring him? He’s so hot and handsome. He was perfect for the role.
Suzanne Todd: Was he hot? I didn’t really notice. I mean when we were looking at actors, do you think?
Jon Lucas: It was how he read the lines.
Suzanne Todd: Yes.
Jon Lucas: It had nothing to do with his appearance.
Suzanne Todd: Nothing to do with his hotness at all. No, I’m kidding of course.
Scott Moore: It’s the same casting process. You just have people come in, and you meet them. To be honest, when Jon and I cast, you usually have people read the lines, but it’s so much more about talking to them and just getting to know them. We do like probably, you know, 10 or 15 minutes just talking to them. And then they read the line, and you send them off.
You learn who the actresses and the actors are as people first and sort of what their bringing, like I said about Kristen Bell and Christina Applegate sort of knowing who they were.
And Jay’s a dad. He’s got two kids. It’s like he got the script. He understood it. I think, yes, he’s a very attractive man, which Jon and I recognized when he came in the room. But, I think the other piece was, when he’s sitting on the couch with Mila and talking about how she’s such a great mom and how he appreciates that, he understands that world.
As a father and a parent, he appreciates that. There was some truth there. And that’s what I really liked.
Jon Lucas: Also, when we cast, we had this amazing casting director, Cathy Sandrich, and her office is all women. You could just tell when a lot of dudes came through for that, and suddenly everyone’s like wearing skirts that day. And everyone’s like, oh, hi … Jay’s here today … And everyone’s all in the room. And I’m picking up something here. I’m not good at this stuff, but you get it when there’s someone who has that kind of magnetism. It’s kind of obvious.
And with visions of Jay Hernandez dancing in my head … our time was up just like that and our day of interviews was a wrap.
There is so much more I want to share with you about the movie and the Press Junket and I will … but in the coming days. In the meantime, just remember, good things come to those that wait!
HAVE YOU SEEN OUR INTERVIEWS?
BAD MOMS HITS THEATERS JULY 29TH
See the BAD MOMS Trailer: https://youtu.be/MVzDKTh49zs
TICKET INFORMATION: Bad Moms celebrates “Bad Mother’s Day” on July 29 – the Mother’s Day you really want and deserve! Get tickets now: http://www.badmomstickets.com/
BAD MOMS – In Theaters July 29
In this new comedy from the grateful husbands and devoted fathers who wrote The Hangover, Amy has a seemingly perfect life – a great marriage, over-achieving kids, beautiful home and a career. However she’s over-worked, over-committed and exhausted to the point that she’s about to snap.
Fed up, she joins forces with two other over-stressed moms on a quest to liberate themselves from conventional responsibilities – going on a wild, un-mom-like binge of long overdue freedom, fun and self-indulgence – putting them on a collision course with PTA Queen Bee Gwendolyn and her clique of devoted perfect moms.
Cast: Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Jay Hernandez, Clark Duke, Annie Mumolo, with Jada Pinkett Smith and Christina Applegate
Studio: STX Entertainment
Writers/Directors: Jon Lucas & Scott Moore
Producers: Suzanne Todd, Bill Block
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Disclosure: I was sent to LA to attend the Bad Moms Junket Event all expenses paid in order to cover their event (Thank you STX Entertainment). All opinions are 100% my own.