*The N-word came up during a press junket held this week for “The Hangover Part II.”

Zack Galifianakis’ character Alan drops the racial epithet in the film, and fiercely defended it’s use – as did director Todd Phillips and co-screenwriter Craig Mazin – saying it underscores just how much of “an idiot” his character really is.

“For someone to say that word so cluelessly, it’s funny because it comes out of a place of ignorance,” Galifianakis explained. “And Alan doesn’t know any better; he’s just an idiot. Anyone who would say that so loosely is an idiot. That word can be very inflammatory but Alan is such a dimwit, it’s not excusable at all but you’re making fun of people that would say that word.”

Phillips chimed in: “For me it’s really an illustration of how left-footed Alan is with the world. It’s just what you do as writers, as a director, and as an actor. You exhibit these qualities and have certain tools with which to work. I think that moment there just highlights how out of step and out of rhythm he is.”

Mazin clarified the thought that went into it using such a controversial word: “You don’t casually type that one into a script.”

“The Hangover Part II,” this time set in Bankok, arrives in theaters May 26.

Watch the latest clips below.