Director Jay Roach may have gotten his start in comedy, helming the "Austin Powers" series and "Meet the Parents," but recently, he's found a second home directing real-life political dramas for HBO. His latest effort, "The Campaign," combines two genres, but Roach told MTV News' Josh Horowitz that he is hoping the new comedy might have some real-world effects on politics today.
"Part of this is therapy for me, because politics is scary," Roach said about directing "The Campaign," which opens Friday (August 10). "You dream of some kind of political system where the country is getting better for it and real leaders are stepping up. It's a little daunting that it seeks descending into something less and less like what's going to help the country."
Since directing "Recount" and "Game Change" for HBO, Roach has dove headfirst into politics, but now he seeks solace from other political funnymen. "I do keep an eye on politics, probably too much. I turn to Jon Stewart, or 'Saturday Night Live,' or 'The Colbert [Report]' and just say, 'Ok, I'm not crazy. I'm not the only person that's saying this is absurd,' " he said. "I hope the film kind of does that too, if nothing else. It's not that serious. It doesn't really do anything other than just making you laugh, but maybe it helps you feel that you're not alone in finding it completely crazy."
With "The Campaign" mocking the worst side of politics just months before the election, it's sure to be fodder for TV's talking heads. Roach said he is eager to see what they do with it.
"I'm interested to see how this gets commented on by the punditry," he said. "I hope it leaks into the conversation a little bit when people talk about how extreme some of the negative campaigning has gotten."
For as over-the-top as "The Campaign" is, Roach does see some truth to the jokes and hopes that others will as well. "I was reading the other day that something like four thousand ads ran in Virginia in June, and not one of them was an issue or a positive ad," Roach said. "They were all just attacking the other side from both sides. It's just astonishing. I hope someone says, 'Well, like in "The Campaign" ... ' or 'This is more like a documentary than a comedy.' "
Will you see "The Campaign"? Let us know your thoughts on the movie's take on politics!