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How Adam McKay Made Financial Disaster a Laughing Matter in ‘The Big Short’ (Exclusive Video)

The comedy director mixes outrage with humor, say cast members like Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell

The guy who directed “Anchorman,” “Step Brothers,” “Talladega Nights” and “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues” would not necessarily be the person you’d choose to make a movie about subprime mortgages, the housing bubble and the financial crisis of 2008.

But the unorthodox choice to hire Adam McKay to direct the film version of Michael Lewis‘ nonfiction book “The Big Short” has paid off in a film that has landed multiple Golden Globe and SAG nominations and is a strong contender for the Oscars.

“Adam’s known for his work in comedies, but he’s also a very good storyteller,” says Steve Carell in this behind-the-scenes video, which premieres exclusively at TheWrap. Carell, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, Finn Wittrock and Brad Pitt are among the actors who portray the handful of real-life financial players who saw the coming disaster, and profited from it.

“The Big Short” deals with far more serious matters than the rise and fall of a TV anchorman, but McKay has a light touch with what might be considered doomsday scenarios.

Ryan Gosling sums up the director’s strengths this way: “I think he has a great quality of being able to be outraged by something without losing his sense of humor about it.”