‘Run, Fat Boy, Run’ Director David Schwimmer Answers Your Questions: Part I

Yes, THAT David Schwimmer. The ex-“Friend” and current “Run, Fat Boy, Run” helmer has partnered with the MTV Movies Blog to answer questions from our readers about his latest theatrical project. Read the first of two installments below from the man behind the “large” comedy that stars Simon Pegg of “Shaun of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz,” and then catch the film in theaters this Friday (watch the trailer here).

SARA Asks:
I love Simon Pegg so I’m excited to see him in the lead for this. How did you think of him? Did you ever consider acting in it yourself?

I love Simon, too. He’s brilliant. We worked together in a few things and have been friends for a while, so he was my first choice. And no, I really didn’t think about acting in it — I just wanted to focus all my energy on one thing: directing.

ANNA Asks:
What’s more challenging: directing or acting? And what’s more rewarding of the two?

Actually, I have to say I love both equally, and find both of them rewarding. I just finished a movie called “Nothing But the Truth” playing Kate Beckinsale’s husband, and had a great time. I kind of needed to get back to acting, after spending a year and a half directing the movie.

How do you feel about social class representation in film? It seems, from the trailer, that Mr. Pegg’s character is a down-on-his-luck average guy; while Mr. Azaria is the well-to-do gentleman. Is social class a personal interest for you, and something you might want to explore more as a filmmaker?

While our film is a fun-loving romantic comedy, there is one aspect of social class that does come into play. As you point out, the character of Whit is a very successful broker, and lives in a ridiculously expensive penthouse apartment — while Dennis, a security guard, is slumming it in the basement flat of a two-story walk up in a somewhat sketchy neighborhood.

What matters, we learn, is not how much money these guys have; rather, the film tells us that the more important thing is a person’s character. It becomes obvious that Dennis is the better choice for Libby because of his having learned from his mistakes, his reclaimed sense of self-worth, his being present as a loving and dedicated father, and his fighting spirit.

I really enjoyed your performance in “Band of Brothers.” Do you have any plans to participate in the upcoming Pacific War follow-up?

Thanks a lot, that was one of the most memorable projects i’ve ever been a part of. I’d love to be in the Pacific War follow-up; maybe e-mail Tom Hanks and give him a little head’s up for me. Seriously.

TODD Asks:
In the commercials for “Run, Fat Boy, Run” I noticed that your name is never mentioned. Are you intentionally staying low-profile in the promotion for this film like Ben Affleck did for “Gone Baby Gone”?

No, I’m pretty out there publicizing the movie. I’m really proud of it — it’s just i find it comes across a bit pretentious sometimes when ads or commercials have “a film by such and such.” It always seems to me, when i’m watching the trailer or ad, that it’s a big ego stroke.

I’m not into it.

Check back Thursday for the second part of David Schwimmer’s answer column!