Up on the big screen, Will Ferrell and Adam McKay have what you might call "vocational schizophrenia." They hopscotch from the local-news business to the NASCAR circuit to the lines of the happily unemployed. Now, after "Anchorman," "Talladega Nights" and "Step Brothers," comes "The Other Guys," an action comedy that has McKay in the director's chair and Ferrell teaming up with Mark Wahlberg for a flick about two New York Police Department pencil-pushers who get pulled into the middle of a multibillion-dollar fraud case.
But whereas Bernie Madoff perpetrated his crime via expensive suits and stuffy country clubs, the villains in "Other Guys" take breaks from stealing cash to fire guns, blow up buildings and rob stores. It's up to Ferrell and Wahlberg to get away from their desks, brush up on their surveillance skills and risk life and limb to bring some justice to the city streets and bank accounts.
MTV News has been conducting our own investigation on this project for a year — tracking each development and bringing you inside peeks at the production — and now, we present to you another of our cheat sheets: everything you need to know about "The Other Guys."
Rounding Up the Guys
We first chatted with McKay about the movie last summer, when he'd flown into New York to kick-start the casting process. He already had Ferrell and Wahlberg locked down and was looking to round out the rest of the cast. By autumn, the pieces started to fall into place: Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson signed on to play rival cops, and Steve Coogan came aboard to play the central bad guy.
Going Behind the Screen
As the film shifted into production, MTV News was lucky enough to be invited onto the New York set for an exclusive look at the production. Ferrell and Wahlberg gave us a tour around their police precinct, joking about the film's "Avatar"-like special effects and revealing one character's daily affirmation: "Nobody does it better. Nobody!"
But that visit wasn't the only chance we got to talk to the cast and crew. Separately, Wahlberg revealed to us his epic day on set with Derek Jeter — or, to be more specific, how his character gets into an unfortunate confrontation with Jeter that results in the Yankee shortstop being shot in the leg. Johnson bragged about how he and Jackson were the true superstars on set. And McKay talked about Wahlberg's balletic dance moves, some of the movie's action scenes, and how the first cut ran over four hours.
These Guys Can't Take Anything Seriously
So what is this movie all about? It's about hope and Barack Obama — at least that's what Ferrell and McKay will tell you. What's more, they'll try to convince you they shot this movie on VHS tapes. And Jackson will wax poetic about his "man love" with Johnson.
If you're looking for serious answers, you've come to the wrong place. Then again, if you're looking for a serious movie, "Other Guys" ain't for you. But if you dig a whole lot of hilarious weirdness of the type you got in "Anchorman" or "Step Brothers," then a few hours with "The Other Guys" is exactly what you want. Just check out one early scene, in which Ferrell and Wahlberg get into a ridiculous argument.
"If I were a lion and you were a tuna, I would swim out in the middle of the ocean and eat you," Wahlberg says.
"First of all, a lion swimming in the ocean? Lions don't like water," Ferrell responds. "If you'd placed it near a river or some sort of fresh-water source, that'd make sense. But you find yourself in the ocean, 20 foot waves — I'm assuming it's off the coast of South Africa — coming up against a full-grown, 800-pound tuna, with his 20 or 30 friends, you lose that battle! You lose that battle nine times out of 10!"
Check out everything we've got on "The Other Guys."
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