Jonah Hill And Michael Cera Talk ‘Superbad,’ Russian Porn, Bunnies Named Jeremy

Actors prove why they're being touted as the future of improv comedy.

BEVERLY HILLS, California — You might want to get your parents’ permission before reading this article. Seriously, even if you’re 35, we’ll need to see some ID before you can read about “Superbad,” the outrageous August 17 flick from the makers of “Knocked Up” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” Columbia Pictures is so confident its R-rated flick will be a hit that the studio has been showing it to critics for months. We haven’t heard buzz like this since “Borat.”

With that in mind, we sat down with fast-rising stars Michael Cera (“Arrested Development”) and Jonah Hill (“Accepted”) for the most super-bad interview you’ve ever read. Beware: Dirty words, sexual humor and all sorts of wildness lie ahead — but much like the movie, it’s all in good fun.

(See Jonah Hill and Michael Cera dish about “Superbad,” booze, bunnies named Jeremy and more.)

MTV: So guys, when you type “Superbad” into IMDb, you get the “Superbad Triple Sex Bill,” a 1999 porno boasting such segments as “Russian Hardcore” and “Swedish Sex Games.” So, the next question is obvious: Why did you feel that this movie needed to be remade?

Jonah Hill: It’s not a remake, so much as it’s a reimagining.

Michael Cera: Yeah, we’re revisiting old ground.

Hill: It’s like, you’ve seen “Russian Hardcore,” but have you seen it with two teenage American males? No, you haven’t.

Cera: Not yet you haven’t, because we researched it. You can’t find it.

MTV: And eight years later, it still holds up.

Hill: Yeah — I think it’s as fresh as ever.

MTV: So, for real, your “Superbad” is actually a raunchy flick about a group of underage kids trying to buy liquor. Seth Rogen wrote the script, and Jonah, you play a character named Seth. So, are you supposed to be him?

Hill: No. I’m not playing Seth. That’s a common misconception, but [Cera] is not playing [co-writer] Evan Goldberg and I’m not playing Seth Rogen. They did it as kind of as a joke, to name the characters Seth and Evan. This stuff didn’t happen to them.

Cera: It’s a tribute to themselves.

Hill: We didn’t study Seth or Evan and do impressions of them.

Cera: I didn’t live with Evan for any number of time, studying his habits.

MTV: You never thought about sneaking in one of his trademark Seth Rogen laughs?

Cera: Well, Seth laughs like that in the movie, when he appears as the cop. So, it would be strange to have two characters with that same laugh.

MTV: What other summer movie would make the best double feature with “Superbad”?

Hill: If I had to compare it to a movie it would probably be “Surf’s Up,” because they are both about a surfing rodent — or whatever the hell that thing is.

Cera: It’s a bird. It’s a penguin — a cute little CGI penguin.

Hill: OK, a penguin. Sorry, let’s do a different comparison: If I had to compare it to one summer movie, it would be “Shrek.”

Cera: Yeah, because the wait is ogre.

Hill: No, seriously, it would be “Knocked Up,” because we all made both movies. If you like an R-rated comedy that has a lot of heart to it, then you’re gonna freak out for “Superbad” … people have started to compare it to “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,” which is really nice.

MTV: Michael, I hate to bring this up, but [a mock] video is all over the place of you getting “fired” from “Knocked Up.” How has this impacted your Hollywood reputation?

Cera: Um, for the better. It’s all in a positive way. … I’ve gotten more MySpace messages about people looking to collaborate on things than I used to. I assume that’s from the video, because MySpace is on the Internet and that video was on the Internet too. I’m putting two and two together. Also, I never did an interview for MTV.com before I got fired from “Knocked Up.” Fact.

MTV: Once this movie comes out, you guys are going to have all these underage kids coming up to you, asking you to buy them alcohol. So, let’s practice and see how it will go down: I’m a 14-year-old boy. Jonah, buy me some liquor.

Hill: Hey, why don’t you go f— yourself?

Cera: Yeah, if you want an autograph or something like that, let me know. Otherwise, like, just leave me alone.

MTV: But you guys made this movie about getting booze — so now I want some sweet, sweet liquor!

Cera: What’s your name?

MTV: Larry.

Cera: Larry, are you a cop?

Hill: Hey, Larry.

MTV: Yes, Jonah?

Hill: F— you. No — I don’t know. I’d probably buy it for them. [He laughs.]

MTV: Switching gears, I know that you guys spent a lot of time working together on this film. What’s the most interesting thing you learned about each other?

Cera: We were just talking about this: I can tell now, hanging out with Jonah, when he likes a girl.

Hill: Yeah, like, if we meet somebody, he’ll tell me whether I find her attractive or not, within a minute.

MTV: What are the signs?

Cera: It’s your behavior around her. You’re suddenly not talking about how women should only be housewives …

Hill: … This is a joke that he’s making — and no one’s going to take it as a joke, because Michael’s jokes sometimes don’t come across.

Cera: But it’s one of those jokes that has 110 percent truth.

MTV: And Jonah, what have you learned about Michael?

Hill: I’ve learned that Michael loves bunny rabbits. He has 19 bunny rabbits, one for each year of his life. He just got his 19th one, and they are all named Jeremy.

MTV: Michael, will you bring the rabbits to the premiere?

Cera: I’ll bring the Jeremys. Sometimes, I just lie across my bed and scream, “Jeremys, come!”

Hill: … and the bunnies just come and frolic.

Cera: You know what, though? When I have a bad day, or no one else likes me, my Jeremys like me.

MTV: As we can see, you guys are being touted as the future of improv comedy, and “Superbad” is a largely improvised flick. So, we’ve got a situation for you guys to riff from: Jonah, you’re working the ticket counter at a movie theater the day “Superbad” comes out. And Michael, you want one ticket for “Hairspray.” Go!

Cera: Um, give me my ticket for “Hairspray.”

Hill: OK … loser.

Cera: Why are you calling me a loser?

Hill: Because I’m in the movie “Superbad.”

Cera: Wait a minute! You’re working here, but you’re … wait, are you Jonah Hill from “Superbad”?

Hill: Michael! Hey man, how’s it going?

[They hug.]

Cera: I haven’t seen you since “Superbad.” How are you?

Hill: Things have not been going great for me, actually. I am kind of on a downward spiral right now.

Cera: Wow. I’m not happy now.

Hill: So, one for “Hairspray”?

Cera: One.

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