Here's what I've learned: you do not "interview" the cast of "Jackass 3D." You just jump in and enjoy the ride. They're going to run the room, not you.
As long as you embrace that, you're going to end up having fun, and I have to say, I walked away without any scars or any footage of myself naked ending up on MTV, so I think I'll count this as a victory.
Over the years, i've interviewed and talked to Johnny Knoxville a number of times, and he's always been exactly as easy to talk to as you'd imagine. I've also spoke to Spike Jonze about the show and Jeff Tremaine. In Austin, I just interviewed Steve-O by himself, and I'm going to put that up tomorrow as an audio piece as part of the return of the Motion/Captured Podcast.
The "Jackass" guys are exactly what you see when you watch the show or see the films. There's no difference when you're in the room with them because they're not playing characters in their films. I guess you could technically call the "Jackass" movies documentaries, although they are perhaps the most surreal commercial movies I've ever seen.
I'll have my review for the film later in the week, but for now, I want to share the interviews I spent last Saturday conducting at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood. The first room I walked into was the toughest, with a total of five of the guys stacked in there together. As you'll see, I lost control of things pretty much right away, and was perfectly happy to do so:
I love how candid Dunn was in that interview. The next room was Johnny Knoxville and Bam Margera together, a combination that sort of surprised me. I've always thought of these two as being the opposite poles in "Jackass," but as they explained, this time out, things were somewhat different:
And finally, Steve-O, Chris Pontius, and Jeff Tremaine were together in the last room, and having just interviewed Steve-O, it felt like we just picked the conversation up where we'd left it off.
It's funny… when people dismiss "Jackass" out of hand, they're dismissing these guys out of hand, and that's ridiculous. You may not like what they do, but for the past decade, they've pushed their particular type of comedy to some really crazy, experimental places, and while this certainly isn't the only thing that makes me laugh, I think you've got to be working really hard to not be caught up in the amazing energy they're still able to muster, even ten years after they first worked together.
"Jackass 3D" opens everywhere on Friday.
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