Talking It Up With The 2/5ths of The Whitest Kids U Know
Zach Cregger and Trevor Moore, of the comedy troupe “The Whitest Kids U Know,” were in town recently promoting their latest film “Miss March” and preparing for a benefit show for the 7th Ward Neighborhood Center. The arcade met with them, and got the insider’s scoop on the movie, the show and everything in between.
arcade- Have you been planning on doing a movie for a while, or did it just work out when the studio brought you the story?
Zach Cregger- I mean, we’ve always had thoughts of doing movies after the show, kind of like the Monty Python model. And we were really hesitant at first about doing this one. Coming out of the gate with a road-trip-sex-romp comedy is not exactly what we would have planned. But we agreed to do it because the studio was really excited about doing it and writing it however we wanted to, and making it our own. Once we knew we could blow the roof off the thing and do what we wanted with the genre, it became more appealing.
arcade- So it was essentially the generic road-trip-sex romp-comedy with your own twist?
Trevor Moore- Actually, the only thing we kept was a guy goes into a coma and wakes up to find out his girlfriend is a Playboy Playmate. Our version bears zero resemblance to the script that was brought to us. The two characters were supposed to be these two douche-y frat guys who go across the country and we wanted to change them, have Eugene be super conservative and Tucker be super promiscuous. And they’re both obsessed with sex, but from different ends of the spectrum. One is too nervous to take the next step with his girlfriend and the other is too worried about living his life to acknowledge that he actually has a girlfriend.
arcade- The Hugh Hefner lifestyle?
Moore- Right, right. Then we added the psychotic firefighters, and the lesbians, and Horsedick and the diarrhea.
arcade- What was it like working with Hugh Hefner?
Cregger- It was chill, he was really nice. We weren’t going to use Playboy originally. We shot the whole movie in other mansions to make it look like the real thing. We shot the whole thing with Robert Wagner as Hugh Hefner. You might know him from playing Number Two in Austin Powers, but he did a great job and he was really funny. We liked it, and we finished the movie. But so before you run it in the theater you do test screenings and it tested really well except the end where the door opens and it’s Robert Wagner instead of the real Hef. There was this audible disappointment and a sort of sigh of disconnect from the audiences. So we took the movie to Playboy and showed it to them and Hef saw it and liked at it. And we were worried that he would have notes and want to change it. But he really liked it and went along with it. He poked fun at himself in the movie, which you saw. We did the thing with him crying. And that whole “Gertrude von Brauer” thing wasn’t real. (In the movie Hef tells a story about his childhood love, Gertrude, who isn’t particularly attractive).
Moore- We ran a disclaimer at the end saying “Hugh Hefner has never, ever been attracted to an ugly girl”
arcade- Did it really? During the screening they shut the movie off during the credits.
Moore- (laughs) No, no, that would have been really cool though. In retrospect, I wish we’d done that.
Cregger- Hugh Hefner only dates many, many attractive women at once.
arcade- Isn’t he dating twins or something?
Moore- Hugh Hefner has not dated a single person by themselves for many decades now. Gaggles of girls.
arcade- A pod.
Cregger- (laughs) Exactly, exactly.
arcade- I saw those promo auditions online with Sam and Darren and Timmy (the other members of the “Whitest Kids U’Know” TV show), but they weren’t in the movie. Did they have anything to do with the production?
Cregger- Not really. Collectively as a group we didn’t want this to be seen as a WKUK movie, so not all of us are in it so we can protect the brand. We’re working on a WKUK movie now and so when that comes out we want that to be seen as the first one. It was cool of them to help us with those promos though.
Moore- Don’t tell them we said this, but we hate them and they suck.
Cregger- We didn’t want them in our movie.
arcade- What was filming the movie like compared to the show?
Moore- It was way easier than the show. You have more resources and more time.
Cregger- Plus the deadlines aren’t as crazy.
Moore- I mean, the TV show has an insane schedule. We shoot something like 100 sketches in five or six weeks, and we’re like “we have to do 17 pages today.” So at the end of filming the show, everybody’s immune systems are wrecked so we’re all sick and sort of crawling to the finish line. But with the movie, we had a (larger) budget and got to do some jokes that we can’t afford on the TV show and we only had to do five or six pages a day, so that was nice.
arcade- How many episodes ahead do you usually shoot?
Cregger- We do the whole season at once. The season that’s on now we finished shooting in September or October, and then we edited for a few months.
Moore- It’s about nine months from beginning to end. From writing, pre-production, filming and then editing.
arcade- What was it like moving from Fuse to Independent Film Channel? (Last season the WKUK show moved switched networks).
Cregger- It was awesome. All the people we like from Fuse went to IFC. It was cool. We got to work with the same chill people but with less limitations.
arcade- How did you guys first get together and start doing comedy?
Moore- We all met in college. There’s this building in Brooklyn called the St. George Hotel which is where 30 different colleges dump their students if you miss your housing deadline. You all end up in that slacker building.
arcade- And that was you guys?
Cregger- That was us.
arcade- Where did you go to school?
Moore- We went to the School of Visual Arts and so did Sam. Timmy went to Brooklyn College, but then he dropped out because of a video game.
Cregger- Grand Theft Auto.
Moore- Vice City.
Cregger- We started performing at as a club for our school and after that we went to this rock club downtown once we graduated. And we did that for years as we built up our body of work. The whole first season of the show is made up of our favorite sketches from our live shows.
arcade- What do you have planned for the future besides the proposed WKUK movie?
Cregger- Well we’ll probably do a 4th season of the TV show, and then we’ll see. It’s hard to know, really. A lot of that depends on how “Miss March” goes.
arcade- And that comes out Friday, March 13th?
Moore- Yeah. You already saw it, right?
arcade- Last week.
Moore- You owe us $7.
Cregger- (laughs) But really, tell your friends.