“Every actor wants to be a rock star, every rock star want to be an actor,” John C. Reilly told a group of reporters recently at a “Walk Hard” Q&A.
Of course, nobody expects them to be better at their new job.
“F–k him, what is that? Stepping on MY territory!” writer and producer Judd Apatow joked of Whites Stripes frontman Jack White’s performance as Elvis in the musical spoof. “I found [him] irritating because he’s like the coolest guy on Earth, and the greatest rock musician, and writer, and performer you’ve ever seen – and ALSO funny? He could do what we do just in his sleep – as an afterthought.”
“He was in ’Cold Mountain,’ he had a small part in that. But he really hung with the improv,” Reilly echoed. “We did this one take where all we did was talk in kind of what I call pigeon English. All this kinda country talk where only he and I can understand each other.”
If most White Stripe fans find White an unexpected choice for The King, so did Reilly, apparently, who revealed that White wasn’t their first choice for the role.
“It was the toughest part to cast. You’d be amazed what scaredy cats there are among actors,” Reilly said. “You say, ’You wanna play Elvis?’ ’Oh, I dunno, man, you know, that’s a lot, everyone knows who Elvis is.’ So what? It turns out the guy with the biggest balls is Jack White.”