Dax Shepard has come a long way since we first peeped him on “Punk’d” with Ashton Kutcher. Now he’s on a hit TV show called “Parenthood” and he has a new movie called “Brother’s Justice” that’s an interesting take on his own brand of comedy.
The movie is about Dax trying to convince his celebrity friends like Bradley Cooper, Tom Arnold, Ashton Kutcher and more, to invest in his new movie career as a martial arts star. Yep, Dax has decided to leave comedy because action movies make the big bucks.
We caught up with Dax and Tom Arnold to speak about their new film available on Video on Demand now. Check it out.
GLOBALGRIND: Can you tell us a little bit about all these great cameos that you got for the movie? How did each one get involved, like Bradley Cooper and some of the others?
Dax: Tom will explain the Bradley Cooper phenomenon, which he’s best to describe that.
Tom Arnold: Right. We’re friends with all the guys. All of them are really close to Dax. So when he came up with the idea for this movie, he asked his friends, including me, to be in it. And our other friend, this was a few years ago, so Bradley Cooper was our buddy. He was a good actor, he’s a very sweet guy. ‘Let’s give him a little part in the movie,’ you know, throw Bradley a bone. Then by the time we’re done with the movie, Bradley’s the biggest star in the world suddenly.
DS: It was very fortuitous.
TA: Everybody’s career, that is in the movie, is going straight up. Except for Dax, except for ours.
Is this autobiographical in terms of your relationship with Hollywood?
DS: Yes. The movie is about trying to set up an action film starring me. Which is kind of metaphorical to me wanting to do a comedy with just my brand of comedy, which I wasn’t able to do either. So then I was forced to just make what I think was funny. Literally the movie was made with four people. David Palmer, who co-directed, and my friend Nate who’s in the movie, produced the movie. Tom is in everything. So in that way it’s almost identical to the real life situation. I wanted to do a movie that was just what I thought was funny and no one was handing out money to do that.
Did any of the cast know they were being spoofed? It was great how the spoofs were happening. Ashton Kutcher, even your friend Nate, was he being spoofed?
DS: Well some of the movie is legit real. Like some of our friends we thought it was better just to pitch them the real movie. Like our friend XYZ, who was in “Wedding Crashers,” we thought it was best to just film his real reaction and that was his real reaction. Or like when we went on talk shows and doing karate demonstrations, that part was all real. But obviously the actors knew what was going on, what the story was. Although again, like Tom said, he and I’s real life relationship would somehow overpower our knowledge of the project, and we would be in a real situation.
TA: But the truth is, with the economy, with everything that’s going on, my business, your business, everybody’s business is different. And so, this gives an excuse, and all these guys, ten guys that are in this, gives the excuse: ‘Yea, let’s pull together for Dax,’ but really, all we want to do is just get together with our buddies and do something fun. That’s why we filmed something and want to do some more. And that would never happen if everything were going swell and everyone was doing the job they want to do. So that’s uh, that’s the good news.
DS: Yeah well when we shot, there’s the movie within the movie was called ‘Young Guns/Jung Guns,’ and like in that one we stayed in character. Tom, Michael Rosenbomb, Ryan Hansen, Bradley Cooper, myself. When we were leaving we all had the best day ever shooting all that stuff. And we were like, ‘Had one of us had a birthday party, gotten married, we could’ve never gotten everyone to show up.’ But because it was to work, or to act, everyone somehow found the time.
TA: So it was almost a great excuse to get us all together.
Can one of you describe a moment where you thought you had an absolutely fabulous idea and you pitched it to someone and they just were like, ‘that’s terrible’?
TA: There’s was a pitch that me and my wife were taking around called ‘Say It To My Face.’ And basically, you’re on the Internet, you can say anything you want about anybody who dogged you. Say they were rude to you, they did this and that. And I know celebrities, they all got stuff that they read about themselves that they wanna make right. So, what if we could track these people, say these things and find out where they came from? There was a guy that on IMBD was just dogging me, that was like ‘Tom Arnold’s whatever, whatever.’ So I got his URL and I tracked him down, I found out he lived in NJ and I just started hammering him. Then he had a website called “Tom Arnold is the devil.”
I just started hammering him. And then I found out that the kid lives in his mom’s basement and he didn’t have any friends, now he has like 200 because he has this site called “Tom Arnold is the devil.” I was so embarrassed, it was in the Hollywood Reporter, it was so stupid. Then I said to the guy, ‘Oh gosh, I feel terrible, please put the site back up.’ You know I’ll give you some help by proving that I am the devil. I’ve ruined this kid’s. So he can’t step in there.
But the idea is, you know, if someone says, ‘I’m not lying, you were in Chicago, and you were rude to everybody, whatever.’ And you could prove it. We track the people down that said it. Then in the perfect world, the celebrity would show up to McDonald’s where they work and they’d hash it out: ‘Say It To My Face.’