daddy's home (hannibal burres)

One unique, blended family. Left to right: Will Ferrell plays Brad Whitaker, Hannibal Buress plays Griff, Linda Cardellini plays Sara and Mark Wahlberg plays Dusty Mayron in Daddy’s Home from Paramount Pictures and Red Granite Pictures.

*When you have two funny men and a straight man in the same room, it’s a laugh fest.

But the stars of “Daddy’s Home,” Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, and Hannibal Buress were quite serious about their new comedy opening Christmas Day.

Stepdad Ferrell (Brad), father Wahlberg (Dusty) and handyman Buress (Griff) are part of the blended family dynamic that is very prevalent nowadays.

“In addition to the fact that there is no big family comedy opening,” Ferrel says, “‘Daddy’s Home’ explores the idea of the blended family which is becoming more and more common rather than uncommon. And we liked being funny while giving a nice message.”

Unreliable biological dad Dusty vies for the attention of his two kids who are lovingly and thoughtfully cared for by their stepfather, Brad. And that, too, Ferrel is proud to boast about, saying, “It’s not the fairy tale story of the evil step-parent. It’s the first time you get to tell the story of the stepdad—and he’s trying to do the best job he can.”

The Film Strip asked comedian Hannibal Buress if he felt singled out being the brunt of racial jokes?

“No. I’m not easily upset because I’m a standup. I made a lot of the jokes.” Ferrel chimed in with, “Griff is the voice of reason,” and Mark agreed, “Yeah, he is.”

Also praising Griff’s involvement was director/screenwriter Sean Anders.

“When I first started testing the movie the joke among us was that we need to change the title to ‘Griff’s Home’ because every time he opens his mouth, he just destroys the audience.”

Besides the ‘nice message’ mentioned, would you say this film is also about forgiveness and redemption, I asked?

“Yes, I think for sure,” Will Ferrell offered. “ I think it’s also trying to make the best out of an uncomfortable situation for the benefit of the family and the kids; and working together,” Ferrel said. We spend a good part of the movie acting so childish and then we finally decide to be adults and do the right thing and I think you know that’s a big message part of the movie.”

Walhberg expressed how grateful he was.

“I’ve been very fortunate to be forgiven many, many times,” he admitted. I’ve had my share over and over.”

Syndicated Entertainment journalist Marie Moore reports on film and TV from her New York City base. Contact her at [email protected]

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