IAR Attends 'Jeff, Who Lives at Home' Blu-ray and DVD Release Party

Monday, 18 June 2012 20:41 Written by  Jami Philbrick
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IAR Attends 'Jeff, Who Lives at Home' Blu-ray and DVD Release Party

Available on Blu-ray and DVD beginning June 19th is the comedy Jeff, Who Lives at Home from directing brothers Jay and Mark Duplass (Cyrus). The film stars Jason Segel (The Muppets) and Ed Helms (The Lorax) as Jeff and Pat, respectively, two brothers with nothing in common that find themselves drawn together in a series of random meetings and emotional revelations that will change their lives forever. In addition to Segel and Helms the movie features Judy Greer (The Descendants), Rae Dawn Chong (Commando), and Oscar-winner Susan Sarandon (That’s My Boy).

Last month, I had a chance to attend a party in Santa Monica celebrating the Blu-ray and DVD release of Jeff, Who Lives at Home. In attendance were directors Jay and Mark Duplass, as well as actress Judy Greer. I had an opportunity to speak with the extremely busy Mark Duplass, who also moonlights as an actor (Darling Companion, Your Sister’s Sister), and the lovely Ms. Greer about Jeff, Who Lives at Home, and the forthcoming Blu-ray and DVD.

I began the event by speaking to co-writer and co-director Mark Duplass about the film and if he was pleased with its incredibly successful theatrical run. “I always have high hopes that I will make a movie, the whole world will watch it and it will make $100 million dollars,” Duplass said. “But at the same time I build movies like Cyrus and Jeff, Who lives at home so they will make money and I won’t be kicked out of Hollywood,” the director laughed. “I want to make a movie that will hopefully be well reviewed and at least turn the studio $1 million of profit, which it did, so the studio will let us do another one. I perceive Jeff to be an easier film to digest than Cyrus was so there was a small part of me that thought, maybe this will be my one.”

“Somebody told me this once and I guess it’s a cliché but I had never heard it before, ‘under forecast and over perform.’ That is the key to what I want to do,” Duplass continued. “I’m not in anyway Pete Berg or someone who throws their balls on the table and is like, ‘I’m going to make a $150 million movie that is going to blow your mind.’ I’m more like, here is the sandbox, I’m going to go in a corner and just give me a couple of peanuts. I’m going to try and make some peanut butter and everything will be fine so leave me alone.”

Duplass was asked if Jeff was an extra personal film for him to make since it is about brothers and he directed it along side his own sibling. “Yeah, I think so,” he answered. “Not necessarily because it’s about brothers but it’s a very specific film in a lot of ways. There is a lack of cynicism in the movie to a certain degree and I think when you do that, I don’t know what it is but I feel more exposed making that movie with an ending like that and hoping its going to work. When you go out to make an ending like this, you are sort of saying, I hope you like it. You’re exposing yourself,” Duplass continued. “In a lot of ways Cyrus was meant for an astute audience and it was a safer film for me to make emotionally. So Jeff felt more personal. It’s been around for a while, we wrote it five years ago. We’ve been waiting for the moment when we felt like we were good enough filmmakers to make it and got enough money to do it.”

Jeff, Who Lives at Home features several references to the 2002 M. Night Shyamaian movie Signs. So I asked Duplass if he is a fan of Signs and thinks it’s actually an inspirational film, or if he was mocking it by including it in his movie. “It wasn’t mocking it for me. I kind of love Signs to be honest with you, I love how balls out it is and bold. I think it is a flawed film, in my opinion, but it has a lot of balls in it. Most importantly I just thought because all my films start with character, it was the perfect way to exposit a character because I fucking hate exposition,” the director explained. “It is so painful to me. So to have Jeff sit on a toilet and talk about how much he loves Signs, you can’t be a cynic and love that movie that much. You have to be a believer. I wanted Jeff to not have a cynical bone in his body and hopefully you’ll like him because of that. Yeah, he’s a stoner and he still lives in his mom’s basement but to a certain degree Jeff is like a hero to me. He has resisted joining society because he believes something great is out there and I love that about him. You can call him a slacker but he has a shit-load of integrity, he’s holding out for the greatness.”

Finally, I had a chance to chat with the always delightful Judy Greer, who will forever be remembered for her brilliant role as Kitty Sanchez on the now classic TV series Arrested Development. The actress started off by discussing her thoughts on the upcoming Blu-ray release of Jeff, Who Lives at Home. “It’s great for people who missed it in the theaters to finally be able to see it. This movie, I think, has a really long life because it’s so good. Our movie’s awesome! I’ve seen this movie three times. I love the message of this movie. But, I don’t know if I would follow a guy on a bus.”

Greer was referring to the character of “Kevin,” a fictional person that Jeff is searching for throughout the movie. The idea of “Kevin,” becomes very inspirational to Jeff so I asked Greer if there has ever been a “Kevin” in her life. “No, not specifically,” she answered. “There’s a man in my past who was an inspiration to me. He managed a restaurant that I worked at when I was in college. My parents were always supportive, but he was so helpful. I was going to acting school and he was always asking me, ‘did you read this book? Did you see this play?’ He was so excited about my studying acting. I think about him all the time. He’s not quite a ‘Kevin’ to me, but I wonder what would have happened to me if I had never met him.”

To watch our exclusive video interview with Judy Greer about Jeff, Who Lives at Home, please click here

Jeff, Who Lives at Home will be available on Blu-ray and DVD beginning July 19th. 

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