Vince Vaughn has never quite lived up to his breakthrough performance in "Swingers". So-so performances in so-what? movies - Gus Van Sant's "Psycho", J-Lo's "The Cell", John Travolta's "Domestic Disturbance" - were followed by a return to form (and more familiar ground) in mob comedy-drama "Made". Now he's a man behaving badly in frat house comedy "Old School".
You were a little reluctant to do this film at first. Why was that?
When I first read the script... You know, I started with comedy with "Swingers" and "Made", but this was like physical comedy. But then I talked with Todd Phillips, the writer/director, and he was so smart and funny. And then, when I found out the cast was going to be Luke [Wilson] and Will [Ferrell], I realised that Todd was going for something smarter than your average college movie. I just wanted it to be a little more clever than that. I'm very proud of this movie. I think it's very funny.
Your character, Beanie, is a married man with a child who starts to regress into this frat guy. Was that fun to play?
Yeah. I don't think my character meant to get involved in anything. He's just trying to help his friend through a breakup. He is encouraging Mitch to imagine all the fun he's going to have now he's single again. But then he's drawn into this situation. He's surrounded by all this stuff and he's tempted by it.
How did you prepare for the movie?
I like to do research no matter what it is I'm doing, because I think you bring that to the screen. I called Will and talked about how we were friends and how we knew each other... you know, the back story. It's not necessarily anything you see in the movie, but I think the more specific you are, it just affects your performance. It's using your imagination. Why did my guy get involved in starting his store? How did he meet his wife? Those kinds of things, for me, are always helpful.
Did you enjoy doing this?
We had a lot of fun, and we were always joking around with each other. We call ourselves 'The Wolf Pack', because we'd always turn on each other and make fun of each other. It was never safe who was getting picked on, because five minutes later we would turn on someone else.