*In “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” starring Steve Carell, Keira Knightly and Derek Luke, Carell and Knightly seek some sort of solace during the earth’s final days.
At the Waldorf Astoria in New York City, The Film Strip asked Carell and Knightly what they thought they might be doing if they knew the world was coming to an end?
“You know what,” Carell muses, “that’s one of the reasons why the script appealed to me. It showed this scenario from a different viewpoint. It’s not the viewpoint of the president on the hotline talking to the astronauts. It’s just people. It’s just the normal rank and file who are dealing with this information and I think it makes you think about it. It makes you think what you would do and the choices that you would make.
“I read the script, and I could not stop thinking about it because I thought it was funny, and absurdly so. And dark. And it also just brought up some very interesting themes. About what people do with their lives. How people conduct themselves. And about having regrets, and not having regrets. And how you embrace it, you know? How you embrace the joy, and how you can live life to its fullest.”
So what do you think you might do?
I probably would just eat a lot of crap. I think I would just eat all of the bad things that I don’t allow myself to eat on a regular basis.
I’d start with fried foods. And I’d segue into red meat, heavy sauces, and creams! Maybe have a day of just ice cream. Then finish up with some baby back ribs. And maybe on the last day, have a deep-dish pizza!
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Keira, what do you think you would do with impending doom on the horizon?
I don’t know and I don’t want to know. Ignorance is bliss. If someone said to me we had twenty days left to go I’d just be in the corner crying, terrified. I think I’d just get as many bottles of alcohol as possible. I wouldn’t want to be sober at the end of the world. So, wine, and a lot of it.
Some are calling this a comedy about the end of the world. Would you call it a comedy?
Um, no. I’d say it has comedic moments but it’s not a comedy. I can’t find one of those neat phrases it fits into. People have said `dramedy.’ I don’t know. Romantic, though it’s not really a romantic comedy. I can’t quite find the correct one.
What drew you to this project?
I just love the script. I’ve never read anything like it. I love the idea of taking this subject matter that is as death-doom-and-destruction as you can possibly get and putting this other twist on it that, I suppose, is comic, but also making it incredibly personal and very small. You see a film about the end of the world and you think it’s going to be a big action blockbuster and there’s going to be heroes…and I love the idea that you take people from a suburban sort of place and can’t figure out what to do with themselves and are still having the same problems they’ve always had for their entire lives and they’re just trying to deal with it. I loved all of that.
Syndicated columnist Marie Moore reports on film and TV from her New York City base. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org