SANTA MONICA, California — Movie stars, one would think, are above the problems we ordinary folk face. If bills need to be paid, if automobiles or appliances need repairing or if the kids are whining about a new toy, such annoyances can be waved away with a smile and a stack of hundred-dollar bills.
The problem of couch-crashing housemates, however, apparently plagues us all.
“I’ve had a number of Dupree-type friendships over the years,” Matt Dillon said recently, shaking his head at the dependent-chum concept behind his new comedy “You, Me and Dupree.” “You love them because they’re your buddies, but they really disrupt your life.”
In the movie, Dillon gets hitched to a character played by Kate Hudson — who is plenty familiar with her character’s dilemma of marrying one man and then sharing a house with his friends. “I knew what I was getting into when I married him,” she grinned, referring to hubby and Black Crowes singer Chris Robinson. “When we first met, we were on the road with Jimmy Page. You can’t go into that world and not think that you’re going to have musicians crashing at your house at least 346 days out of the year.”
So far, however, Dillon and Hudson have been able to avoid any couch-crashing from co-star Owen Wilson, who admits he’s often been guilty of a Dupree-like lifestyle. “I went to visit Woody Harrelson in Hawaii, and I was supposed to stay four days; I stayed four weeks,” he laughed. “His wife, who is like a saint, has so much patience but by the end she was like, ’So, are you going to catch that flight today back to the mainland?’ ”
The length of stay, however, is insignificant when you consider the patience-testing trials Wilson’s character puts Dillon and Hudson through in the movie. And according to the stars, there’s plenty of truth behind some of Dupree’s escapades, which include hiring strippers, walking around in thong underwear and using a borrowed sock to, ahem, pleasure himself.
“I’ve had the sock incident! I can actually claim that I have had a friend soil my socks,” Dillon exclaimed, referring to one of the film’s most outrageous moments. “I don’t know what it is. I didn’t go to college, but I think it’s some sort of collegiate phenomenon. What is that? What’s going on with the socks?”
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Grinning, Dillon offered the following advice for victims caught in a similar situation: “You’ve got to get rid of it immediately. In my case, it went right in the garbage and I never looked back.”
“Molly, my character in the movie — as patient as she is, I’m still a little bit more patient,” Hudson insisted. “I enjoy weird characters. There are two English musician friends of ours, and I’ve seen their penises one too many times. You’re just going, ’Why? Why is it necessary for you to be walking around my house naked? Or do you think it’s funny to flash me?’ But they do. And it makes them who they are, and I love them for it.”
Agreeing with Hudson’s point, Wilson insists that the beauty of friendship is that sometimes you get to be a Dupree, and other times you end up more like Dillon’s put-upon character. “I know that I’ve been a Dupree, but I feel like I’ve also been a Carl,” the “Wedding Crashers” star insisted. “My older brother [actor/director Andrew Wilson] moved in after his marriage broke up. He moved in with me two different times, and both times after he moved in, my girlfriend would move out. She couldn’t deal with both of us together because when he would move in, then the pingpong table would get set up, and the motorcycle would get parked in the house — it’s just not conducive to a relationship.”
Suddenly stuck with a Dupree of his own, Wilson realized that he needed to respond with a truly brotherly act. “With me, it was just moving and not telling Andrew where I was going,” the actor laughed.
Homeowners might not be so eager to move away, however, if they were fortunate enough to have Hudson sleeping on their couch. When asked about her most offensive quality as a potential roommate, the free-spirited beauty wasted no time in answering. “Similar to Dupree, it would probably have something to do with nudity,” she confessed. “I’ve never been one to be too shy with that.”
“I just don’t see that as a bad thing, Kate Hudson walking around the house naked,” Dillon responded. “It wouldn’t be unbecoming of a houseguest like Kate.”
Wilson, unsurprisingly, agreed. “One man’s ’worst habit’ is another man’s ’bring it on!,’ ” he laughed. “That gets me thinking, ’Geez, what’s this press junket going be like when we go to Australia?’ ” he added enthusiastically. “Maybe we can room together!”
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