BEVERLY HILLS, California — As we learned from Will FerrellWill Ferrell and John C. ReillyJohn C. Reilly during their "Talladega Nights" period, speaking with the improv masters isn't so much an interview as it is an Olympic event. Toss out a topic, and it's like a starter pistol — all you can do is step back and watch them race to the too-funny finish line.
With that in mind, we came prepared for "Step Brothers,""Step Brothers," the surreal Judd Apatow-produced comedy that reunites the actors this weekend for what might just be the dumbest movie ever made — and we mean that in the best way possible. Below are our supremely stupid questions inspired by the film about two grown men battling each other like spoiled kids — and their twisted takes on airline security, Prince and the cooling sensation of carefully placed cottage cheese (warning: the guys get a bit graphic with the dairy product).
MTV: What's the most childish thing that you guys do on a regular basis?
John C. Reilly: Besides wetting the bed?
Will Ferrell: You still wet the bed, don't you?
Reilly: I live a pretty childish life. I play make-believe for a living. That's what I do.
Ferrell: I like to sneak on commercial airplane flights without paying. That's something I used to do as a kid. I still do that.
MTV: Do the airlines get angry?
Ferrell: Livid. Yeah, especially with today's security concerns. "It's not a joke!" — I've been told that numerous times. It's a federal offense now, even more so than it used to be.
MTV: Anything else?
Ferrell: I also steal my own children's toys, just out of spite. I don't actually play with them, I just steal them.
MTV: What do you say when they ask where their toys went?
Ferrell: I say, "You know what? The toy fairy came and took them all away, because you were bad!"
MTV: In the movie, you both have a sleepwalking problem. What's the worst thing you've found yourself doing in real life while sleepwalking?
Reilly: I do this weird thing: I usually sleep in just a T-shirt and nothing else. But then I have these strange anxiety feelings in the middle of the night, and I'll get up and put on a pair of jeans and get back into bed and go back to sleep. And then I'll wake up and be like, "Why do I have jeans on?" I can't tell you how many times that's happened, for real. And then, I must have had trouble getting them on or something one time, because I found them perfectly folded on the nightstand next to the bed!
Ferrell: So you tried and then just gave up?
Reilly: Yeah, in case I need them. Because the feeling is like: I'm going to have to get up, and I'm half-naked, so I'd better be prepared.
Ferrell: Well, I used to share an apartment with my brother in New York. And I remember waking up thinking that he was my girlfriend — now wife, but girlfriend at the time — in the other futon. I got up to crawl into bed with my brother and then woke myself up halfway through, before I tried to make love to him. Close call.
MTV: You almost had a "Brokeback""Brokeback" moment.
Ferrell: Yeah, he woke up, I woke up, and he was like, "What are you doing?" and I'm like, "Um, nothing."
MTV: If you could have anyone in the world as your stepbrother, who would it be?
Reilly: [He looks at Will.] Bingo!
Ferrell: [He doesn't look at John.] PrincePrince.
Reilly: Whoa. I pointed to you. I said "bingo," and you said "Prince"!
MTV: Why Prince?
Ferrell: Just because I think Prince would be neat and orderly ... he would have his little suits and stuff.
Reilly: You'd be eating lollipops together and talking about metaphysical things.
Ferrell: And wearing top hats. I think we'd have a good time.
MTV: There's also a great scene in the movie where you get into a fistfight with a bunch of little kids. What advice can you give to other adults who might find themselves similarly plagued by youth violence?
Reilly: Just try to keep moving, because you don't want to get swarmed. Once three or four of them get their hands on you, the weight becomes a problem. You can't get away. And watch out for their little claws — they have really sharp fingernails.
Ferrell: Keep a lot of treats on you. Bite-sized candies [to toss], so that you can get them away. That will sometimes distract them.
Reilly: But sometimes, when they get angry, they're not even interested in food.
Ferrell: No, they just want to rip your head off.
MTV: In the film, you guys place your privates on things to mark your territory. In real life, where's the worst place that you've ever found yourself depositing your genitalia?
Reilly: What's your channel?
Reilly: OK, I can say this on MTV: Sometimes, when making a number two on the toilet, there will be a bit of a backsplash, and that water is not where I want my berries to be.
Ferrell: So you'll protect them with a protective shield?
Reilly: I don't necessarily lower them into the water, but sometimes you get a backsplash. And it's like, "Wait a minute. I just got toilet water on my junk!"
Ferrell: So what will you do to prevent that?
Reilly: There's nothing to be done, Will. It happens. It depends on the power of the discharge.
Ferrell: Oh, OK. I thought you were going to say, "I've developed a special pouch that I place them in prior."
Reilly: Well, you could tuck up. But then, what if you have to pee? It just gets graphic from here on. Where's the worst place you've placed your junk?
Ferrell: Probably in a container of cottage cheese. I just laid them in there, just to see what the imprint looked like. And then I just put it back in the fridge.
Reilly: A nice, cooling kind of thing. ... I always try to keep as much cottage cheese near the groin area as possible.
Ferrell: I have cartons of cottage cheese around my bed, because I'll sleepwalk and just make an indentation, an imprint. And I'll write it down, and then log it in my book. I have a big journal.
MTV: Will, you're also credited as a writer on "Step Brothers." I've interviewed some screenwriters over the years who prefer to write in a quiet place, while others prefer a loud environment. What's your preference?
Ferrell: I like the airport. Yeah, I'll go to a terminal and just be with the people. I like the din of a mass of people. Maybe a sporting event sometimes or a concert.
MTV: So you'll go to the airport, write a screenplay, and then just sneak onto an airplane for kicks?
Ferrell: Yeah. It's a two-for-one that way.
Check out everything we've got on "Step Brothers."
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