Johnny Knoxville & Seann William Scott

The Dukes Of Hazzard

Interviewed by Anwar Brett

“My pants kept flying off during the whole production! ”

Seann William Scott is best known for his portrayal of the obnoxious Steve Stifler in the three American Pie movies. His other films include Dude Where's My Car?, Evolution, Welcome To The Jungle and Bulletproof Monk.

Johnny Knoxville meanwhile is beloved by millions - and known to the odd casualty department - for his appearances in Jackass. Showcasing a succession of dumb, dangerous yet strangely heroic stunts, the MTV series enjoyed a successful film spin off in 2002, before Knoxville launched his movie career with roles in Men In Black 2, Walking Tall and Grand Theft Parsons.

In the big screen remake of 70s TV series The Dukes of Hazzard they play cousins Bo and Luke Duke who tear around Hazzard County, Georgia and generally spoil the schemes of corrupt politico Boss Hogg (Burt Reynolds - yes, we did say Burt Reynolds).

In what way did Bo and Luke appeal to you as characters? Was it simply down to being fans of the original show?

Knoxville: My character was a womanising drunk, so that was fun to play. Actually the movie was fun, period, just from doing all the bar fight sequences and the driving. We trained with a guy named Bobby Orr who's the number one stunt driver in the world. He taught us how to 180 degree turns, 90 degree drifts and that's good because you can use that in your personal life.

Scott: I was a big fan of the show so I think I probably had the most fun just hanging out with these guys, making a film version of it.

The out takes reveal something of the off-screen relationship between you both - what kind of things did you get up to?

Scott: Pretty much every day, Knoxville showed me his testicles. He'd switch it up: show me his right, then his left, usually before I was about to do a pretty big car stunt. So what you saw in the out-takes happened pretty much every day. We just didn't have time to show all of it.

Knoxville: My pants kept flying off during the whole production!

Did you ever get him back?

Scott: No, what can you do to Knoxville that hasn't happened to him already?

Were you disappointed, Johnny, that Seann got to do all the driving?

Knoxville: In the script Seann is in love with the car and they had me in love with girls, so I'm very happy with the way it turned out.

Seann, did you do all of the car stunts yourself?

Scott: Yeah, I did a bunch, but as Johnny said, we worked for about three weeks with this guy Bobby Orr who used to be a NASCAR driver. I probably did about eight stunts that were pretty cool, with the stunt drivers doing the rest. The director and producer wanted to make sure it was all real driving. I think the only CGI stuff was putting me in the car during those others stunts, then that big jump at the end and some dialogue stuff. But the stunts themselves were real.

Knoxville: Seann got damn good at it. I just sat there and talked on the CB in the movie but Seann trained about four hours a day and a lot of the things you see in the film, he did. We were shooting a scene where there was a stationary police car and the General Lee had to dance around it with the front end finishing up a few inches away. They taught him about 20 minutes before, he did it twice, they said action and he just nailed it. And after he nailed it I completely ruined the scene because I broke out of character and said, "Whoah! That was ******* great, man!"

Have you met cast members from the original series?

Scott: We met John Schneider (the original Bo) at the premiere, and he said he loved the movie. He said, "You played him really crazy, but I liked it." We exchanged numbers and he wants to hang out. That's pretty much the experience I had.

Is it true Johnny that you had to take a lie detector test on Howard Stern's Show to put paid to the rumours that you and co-star Jessica Simpson were having an affair?

Knoxville: Yeah and I passed it. It was such a good idea I couldn't afford not to do it. Howard has been very good to Jackass, and I always have a ball when I go on there. That's usually because you go on at six in the morning, so there's no point in going to bed the night before.

Did your daredevil characters cause you to reflect on any particularly ill advised stunts you've tackled in your respective careers?

Knoxville: In my so-called career? Seann, you jump in because there's a host of things I just shake my head about.

Scott: I'd rather hear your answer.

Knoxville: Errrrrr...pretty much anything we did on Jackass. There were a few times after reviewing footage when I was like, "Whoa! I really escaped in that one." We did one thing that no-one ever saw, where they put me in a cardboard box the size of a television and gave me a pillow. They taped it up and then kicked me down a flight of concrete steps. About halfway down the box just took off and I ended up being slammed right on my back. I got lucky because if I'd have slammed on my neck, well, Ashton Kutcher would be sitting here now - and nobody wants that.

The Dukes Of Hazzard is released in UK cinemas on Wednesday 24th August 2005.