Do you love Jason Bateman? I love Jason Bateman. While my age may have prevented me from jumping onto the Bateman Bandwagon during Silver Spoons or Teen Wolf Too, I definitely caught him on his second go-round when he starred as Michael Bluth on Arrested Development. The show is one of my favorite things ever, and Bateman has a lot to do with that. As Michael, he manages the impossible by being just as goofy as the rest of the Bluth family while still playing the perfect straight man. His timing and delivery are so uniquely perfect and, as we all know, Arrested was just the tip of the comedy iceberg (Pepper Brooks in Dodgeball, anyone?)
Nerdist got a chance to talk with the director and star of Bad Words at the premiere of the movie this week. When it came to his feature directorial debut, how was it for the Hollywood vet finally stepping behind the camera? “It was incredibly exciting,” he told us. “I was giddy with excitement every day because it’s something I’ve wanted to do my whole life, and it was very exciting that it was so comfortable. It wasn’t easy but it was comfortable.” Surely there was an added pressure to directing and starring in the Andrew Dodge-scripted film? Not so, says Bateman. “I thought it was easier because I didn’t have to direct the lead actor. He did everything the way that I wanted him to.”
In addition to Bad Words, which screens next week at Austin’s South By Southwest festival and opens nationwide March 24, Bateman will be reprising his role as Nick Hendricks in Horrible Bosses 2 later this year. How did he feel about the much anticipated sequel? “It feels like we may have something better than the first, actually… there’s a lot of good stuff there. Christoph Waltz lending all of that cache and pedigree to the film is amazing. And Chris Pine, with really good comedic chops and a super strong jaw line, it’s a great combo.”
Speaking of reprising roles, I had to ask about the status of Arrested Development. Were there any updates on a potential Season 5 of the now-Netflix series or possibly even the long-rumored movie? “I have not been told a thing. You know the equal amount that I do.”
Fair enough! Bad Words, starring Jason Bateman, Kathryn Hahn, Rachael Harris and Ben Falcone, screens next week at SXSW and opens nationwide March 28.