A "Dumb and Dumber" sequel could happen as early as September, Bobby Farrelly told TheWrap on Monday.
Farrelly, along with his brother Peter, ushered in a new wave of slapstick comedies in the 1990s with the first "Dumb and Dumber" and "There's Something About Mary."
TheWrap checked in with Farrelly to talk about "The Three Stooges" DVD/Blu-Ray (out July 17), the obstacles to a "Dumb and Dumber" sequel and why he and his brother want to work with Johnny Depp.
Lots of directors load their DVDs with unrated footage and new cuts. Did you do that for this one?
My brother Pete and I have never been huge fans of trying to put out a different cut. The cut we put in the theaters is our cut, but these three actors gave us so much material. In the DVD, you have the option of seeing other bits they did. Those guys were amazing; they channeled the original Three Stooges.
Given how popular the original Stooges were, how much time did you put into casting it?
We talked for a long time about who would be right to play it and bandied about every actor in town – some guys famous, some guys not so famous. The fact that they are probably not as well known as they should be helped you get lost in the story. Five minutes into it, it’s Moe, Larry and Curly rather than three famous actors playing those parts.
So what can viewers look forward to with those deleted scenes?
A lot more spot-on antics. There are some very good stunts, some lines. What we wanted to do was do exactly the type of humor “The Three Stooges” did, but didn’t want to redo any of the bits. We had to come up with all new stuff; that was the biggest challenge.
Are there any bits you are particularly proud of?
We have a really good stunt guy, Tierre Turner. We don’t do a lot of stunts in our movies; stunts are dangerous and we just haven’t had the need for them. With the Stooges, it was stunt-driven and those guys just knocked it out of the park. They trained so hard, from falling off ladders to the bell hitting Larry David in the head. The fact that we did all those stunts and no one got hurt, that’s what we are proud of.
And did you do any of the stunt training yourself?
I wanted to get on the wire once, and I did, but I didn’t feel the need to get slapped around or hit over the head.
So every guy between the ages of 20 and 40 would kill me if I didn’t ask: what’s going on with “Dumb and Dumber”?
It’s almost 20 years later in the lives of Harry and Lloyd and we just feel like it’s a great time for them to come out and see what’s happening in their lives. I believe a sequel is going to happen. My brother and I have our blinders on, convincing ourselves it’s going to happen but it hasn’t been the easiest thing in the world to get off the ground.
We’re going to shoot this because Jim Carrey and Jeff Daneils want to do it. For the first time, they are both available and are eager to do it. I have to believe there will be enough interest there that we should be able to get this movie made.
You said it hasn’t been easy. What’s the biggest obstacle?
It’s the same obstacle my brother Pete and I had when we tried to make the first “Dumb and Dumber” — for the people who make decisions, the people who wear the suits to read such a silly script and say ‘oh that’s hysterical let’s make it.’
The first one, they just couldn’t see it on the page. Why would it be funny that these guys are this dumb? I understand that, I do. They are businessmen; they’re not comedians. Has there ever been a sequel 20 years later that’s been a hit?
What’s the status of the script?
We are actively working on it; we’ve been writing it for the last four months. We get together every day and write it and try to make it better and better. We feel we have a very very funny script. We’re optimistic it will get made this fall.
You brought up Jeff Daniels, who is starring in HBO's “The Newsroom.” That’s a bit different from “Dumb and Dumber.” Have you been watching it and what do you think?
Jeff Daniels is a brilliant actor. He’s always been a brilliant actor. When we cast the first “Dumb and Dumber,” we had Jim Carrey first. Jim was ‘in the zone’ funny at that time in his life and we wondered who could keep up with him. We went through the list and
thought maybe we should go outside the world of comedy and get a really good actor who would challenge Jim in a different way.
We’d seen Jeff in things where we were laughing even though it wasn’t a funny movie. I’m very excited he’s in this new show because we don’t see enough of him.
From Jim Carrey to Ben Stiller to Owen Wilson, you’ve worked with some of biggest comedic actors of their generation. Is there someone you haven’t worked with that you’re dying to?
We haven’t worked with Will Ferrell; I think he’s hysterical. We also think of guys not in the world of comedy. There are great actors like Johnny Depp.
What is a Johnny Depp role in a Farrelly Brothers movie?
Johnny Depp can do a lot of different things. He does comedy well. He’s done so many movies with Tim Burton and the choices he makes that are not in the script…the way he played Jack Sparrow. If we gave him a good comedic role, he’d knock it out of the park.
Are there any actors, like Jeff Daniels, that are funnier than people expect?
Kind of the opposite. I knew early on working with Jim [Carrey] and Bill Murray that they were funny, but sometimes in a scene where it’s not about being funny but being real, that’s where I was surprised. Some of the guys from the world of comedy, they are good actors too. Those two guys in particular. Woody Harrelson felt that way too; he’s proveon himself. Guys like Murray, people think of him as a comedian and think they are limited.
I would watch Bill Murray read a Russian novel.
I was in a golf tournament and Bill Murray won the long drive competition at a charity thing. When they called his name, all he had to do was get up and walk to the front of the room and pick up his $20 gift certificate.
It was the funniest thing I ever saw. The way he sauntered in, taking his time, he had the whole room in stitches doing nothing but walking to the podium.
I had no idea Bill Murray was such a good golfer. How’s your short game?
Terrible. I like golf, but that’s my weakness. There’s something about watching golf that’s very soothing. I watch it on TV and enjoy it.
And you don’t envy the players?
No envy at all. I just like to watch the competition of it. Golf will humble you. Even for the guys that are the best in the game, they’ll put pressure on themselves and do things they would never do.
So before I let you go, is there anything else you’re working on or do you have all you eggs in the “Dumb and Dumber” basket.
Our eggs are in that basket. We have our blinders on and have a single-minded focus to make this movie, a sequel to “Dumb and Dumber.” We’ll see if that focus is enough to get it done, but that’s what we did when we had never made a movie. We were trying to make it as screenwriters and got a little frustrated. We said maybe we’ll just make one for ourselves and one of the screenplays we’d written was “Dumb and Dumber.” We focused on making this movie and it helped us; there wasn’t a lot of distraction. We just made a declarative statement that this movie will get made.