Slow down, conclusion-jumpers: Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy consider “Bridesmaids” to be neither a wedding movie nor a “chick flick.”
“We did not write this movie specifically for a particular audience,” says Wiig, who stars in and co-wrote the film opening May 13. “We didn’t say, like, ‘We’re going to make this just for women to enjoy.’”
Co-star McCarthy agreed, noting that “a lot of the wedding comedies” focus on lightweight conflicts. “They’re written as if the women are 11,” says the Plainfield native. “I’ve never had a fight about nail polish; I don’t know any woman who’s gotten in a fight about nail polish. Then [in such films] there’s little bottles being thrown.”
To that I say, hallelujah. For a change, the smart, hilarious “Bridesmaids,” produced by Judd Apatow, is a comedy revolving around a wedding that presents women’s real friendships and relatable problems (like affording garb for a friend’s nuptials). You know, as opposed to suggesting that women are man-crazy morons willing to sell each other out to advance their own self-interest. (Looking at you, “Bride Wars.”)
In the film (partially set in Chicago but filmed in Los Angeles), Wiig plays a woman who puts her professional and romantic woes aside as the maid of honor to her life-long best friend (Wiig’s real-life pal, Maya Rudolph). McCarthy plays the most forthcoming, least glamorous of the bridesmaids. At the Peninsula Hotel, “Saturday Night Live” veteran Wiig, 37, and “Mike and Molly” star McCarthy, 40, (both alums of L.A. improv group the Groundlings) pleaded for faster-moving showers, longed for mustaches and recommended not stressing out the bride—until after the wedding.
What advice do bridesmaids need to hear that people don’t often tell them?
Kristen Wiig: I would say if you’re not getting along with someone in the wedding party or maybe you just met someone, maybe they’re pushing your buttons a little bit, don’t tell the bride. It’ll stress her out.
“FYI, Ali is being a huge bitch.”
KW: I know, I wouldn’t [say anything]. Because she will want everyone to be happy and she’ll stress about it. Tell her everything that bitch did after.
Melissa McCarthy: All the things people tell her [are] really important, like, “The linen color is really important,” no, it’s not.
KW: “The M&M’s at the table have to match the shoes of the flower girl.”
MM: You’re about to get married. It’s so fun; just have a really fun time.
KW: It’s a party after a romantic ceremony.
MM: it’s just about you guys. It’s not the linen.
What’s a tradition that needs to change as far as the “over-the-top-ness,” as you say, of weddings?
KW: I think opening the gift in front of everybody [at showers] has to change. ‘Cause everyone’s having a good time, they’re having champagne, and then it's like, “Gift!” And everyone sits around and you can’t talk and everyone says “Aww” and you pass around every gift. And it takes a really long time and it makes me have a panic attack.
How do you fix that?
MM: Just open ’em later and send a thank you. It’s OK; it’s OK. And I want people to stop having 15 events for their wedding. The wedding is the event. “I want the pre-breakfast, and the pre-lunch and then the wedding brunch and the pre-wedding brunch.” There’s 15 events before, then the wedding, then—I only heard about this like two years ago for the first time—
KW: Then people have brunch after—
MM: “We’ll see you tomorrow at the post-brunch!” And I was like, “[Bleep] you!”
KW: “No, you won’t.”
MM: “No! No!” So after, not just the rehearsal dinner, 15 things leading up to it, after the wedding the next day brunch. [I want to say,] “I think you’re all great; I am tired of you.”
KW: “And I don’t have another dress.” [Laughs.]
MM: “And I don’t have another dress!” I don’t know, when my husband and I got married we were like, “See ya! You’re all great but …” We wanted to go on our honeymoon. But people are still milking it for another thing. It’s just turning into like a $30,000 event [per person].
People will definitely note the way Judd Apatow-produced movies often don’t pay much attention to women, yet those aren’t characterized as “guy movies.”
KW: They don’t say, “It’s a male comedy.” It’s just a comedy.
MM: It’s a dude flick.
KW: Ultimately you write what you know. It would be a bigger challenge for me to write a movie that was all guys.
You didn’t consider doing “Groomsmen”?
KW: [Laughs.] Everyone’s been asking us that; that’s so funny. I think we should just do it, but then dress as men and have mustaches on.
And remake the exact same movie?
MM: Just [with a] different wardrobe.
KW: Or we can just take the movie and just super-impose a floating mustache.
Speaking of mustaches …
KW: Oh, good segue.
MM: This could get really awkward.
I was trying to remember another movie that has one person doing, as you do, an impression of both Hitler and a penis.
Which did you spend more time on?
KW: The Hitler one was not my idea; I think that was [director] Paul Feig’s. He did it and he told me to do it. First I was like, “Ooh, is it going to be bad if I do that?” I don’t know. The penis one, I didn’t do that in rehearsal or anything; it just happened when we were shooting it.
It just spontaneously came out of you.
KW: Yeah. [Laughs.]
MM: That makes it even better. “Oh, I just always do this randomly.”
If you were doing a skit together on “Saturday Night Live,” what would you want it to be about?
KW: Oh my gosh. I think that we have invented the first taxicab that has two steering wheels. And we drive it around the city picking up people.
MM: And both sides have a bus-opening contraption.
What’s the name of that skit?
KW: “Taxi … Babes.”
Kristen, if you had a guest spot on “Mike and Molly,” what would you want your character to be?
KW: I would want to be the cleaning lady who just stands in the background and gives her really dirty looks and she’s convinced that I don’t like her and no one will believe her.
MM: No one else sees her but me. I wish she were a cleaning ghost.
KW: That’s what it is! I want to be a cleaning ghost on “Mike and Molly,” please!
MM: [Makes ghost sounds.]
KW: Oh my gosh. “Don’t you hear that vacuum?” “Molly, you’ve gone crazy!”
Are there a lot of those floating around Chicago?
MM: There may have been. Both of us were hearing weird things in our room last night, so maybe.
KW: We woke up in the morning and our room was totally clean.
What do you like to do when you’re in town?
KW: I order Lou Malnati’s any and every time I’ve been to Chicago.
What’s your order of choice?
KW: I get the cheese deep-dish. I get the fried mozzarella cubes as an appetizer. And then the cookie pie with the ice cream for dessert. And like three Diet Cokes.
All for you?
KW: Oh, no—“I like to go get pizza alone!”
MM: I tried to go with her. She won’t let you go with her.
We asked readers for questions, and @katiekapoww wanted to know what challenges you feel like you face as women in the entertainment industry? And comedy in particular?
KW: Can’t do scenes where I pee standing up.
MM: We’re going to change that, though.
KW: When they go in disguise in movies, you can’t use the mustaches or anything. Well we could, actually…
MM: Just real thin and on the side. “Do I look like a 12-year-old boy?”
KW: I don’t know … that “women in comedy” question …
MM: if you’re chopping wood and it’s a scene that takes place in summer, it’s less likely—not impossible—for me to take my shirt off to do it. Which I think is bull[bleep]. I’m in a lot of kids movies, and I try to chop wood in all of them.
KW: [Laughs.] Topless.
MM: And someone’s got an issue with it!
How much of a bonding experience is it for bridesmaids to vomit together, as they do in “Bridesmaids”?
KW: Oh my gosh, you know what they say! “A group of friends that pukes together … stays friends forever.”
MM: “Pukes together forever.”
Who says that?
KW: I think a lot of people.
MM: Two people in the elevator.
KW: I think Andy Rooney said it on “60 Minutes.”
What McCarthy does in Chicago: “Usually when I come in [I go to] Wrigley [Field]. I love baseball, so that’s my favorite ballpark. A lot of times when I do come into Chicago I go home to Plainfield. I don’t get as much time in the city.”
On the “Real Housewives” franchise:
“I watch all of them religiously except for ‘Orange County,’” said Wiig.
“I’ve seen bits and pieces,” McCarthy said. “I usually see a weird marathon on a plane. I’m always like, ‘I’m not watching it. I will not watch it.’ And then on a plane like, I’ll see 17.”
Wiig on not dreaming about her “SNL” characters: “I dream that I’m in the wrong part of the studio when I have to be on stage and it's Saturday night. I have that dream a lot. I have a lot of costume nightmares. Where I’m not in the right thing.”
McCarthy on a character of Wiig’s she loved at Groundlings: “I may have seriously slightly wet my pants the first time I saw it. It’s one of those sharp memories where I thought, ‘That girl doesn’t have an ounce of pride and I’m kind of in love with her.’ And it killed.”