Writer/director Patrick Brice’s second feature, “The Overnight,” is a painfully funny relationship comedy that explores thirty-something sexual frustration and parenthood.
The film centers around Alex and Emily, a young couple who recently moved to Los Angeles from Seattle. The pair are getting used to life in a new city and are desperate to find new friends. After a chance meeting with Kurt at the neighborhood park, they agree to join hist family family for pizza night. The night starts off as normal first dinners do –slightly awkward, with small talk, but as the night goes on and the wine flows, things devolve to a point where both couples start to question who they are and what they want out of their relationships.
The film features an A-list cast that includes Taylor Schilling, Adam Scott, Jason Schwartzman, and Judith Godrèche. We caught up with them recently to discuss the film, L.A. stereotypes and some serious full frontal nudity that’s seen throughout the film.
On the nudity in the film:
Jason Schwartzman: It’s prosthetic genitalia… Adam Scott and I, after the movie screened, and we’d done a couple post screening type things… He always says, “So these prosthetic penises that we wore…” He casually gets it out there that it was a prosthetic. He’s always the one that brings it up. It was at South by Southwest that I realized- he wasn’t at that Q&A – and I was talking to this woman who was like “I just want to say, big shout out to male nudity and your penis.” And I was like, “Thank you!” I knew- I hit a moment in my brain where I knew. I’d tell her that this is not real, or I just go with it that it’s real. And I just went with it being real because she was so happy about male nudity in cinema and my penis and I just couldn’t break her heart. I realized that if unprompted or unasked, I will let it go that it’s um- like if you hadn’t asked that question I wouldn’t have brought up that it’s a prosthetic. I can only answer that if I’m asked.
When I spoke to Adam Scott before we did the movie he said, “You know we’re going to have prosthetics.” And I was not worried about wearing the prosthetic, I was more worried about the process of applying the prosthetic. Because I started thinking about those people who would work on a crew that would have to apply it, and what that would be like… To put the prosthetic on, they’re seeing it all- they’re seeing so much of you in so many ways as a person, but it was fine… But spiritually it was nice. If you had said to me that I was going to be in a movie about a pool party, and everyone was in a bathing suit I would be way more nervous. Cause you know, I’m not like in great shape from a distance. Or maybe from a distance I am in great shape. But I have like little wisdom handles. All that kinda stuff, and just in a bathing suit I’d be way more nervous. But because I was naked with this prosthetic on, it actually was like so much more extreme, that I felt way more relaxed being naked with the prosthetic than I would if I was in swim trunks the whole time. And I can’t explain the psychology of that, but that’s sort of like. It was very wonderful- it was just very liberating.
On the LA stereotype portrayed by Kurt and Charlotte:
Jason Schwartzman: I love that line in the movie where Adam says, “Maybe this is how dinner parties are in LA.” I just think that line is so funny. I’ve never been at a party where it felt, I mean when I was in high school there were a lot of parties with people that felt like things might be happening. But I’ve never been in a situation where it felt it was going to go to a place where it was maybe uncomfortable for certain people. I’ve never been in a swingy situation. Maybe I have and I just didn’t realize.
Patrick (Bice) kept talking about these types of people, like Kurt, these kind of dads and I just couldn’t– But I live in the valley, so it’s a different type of dad. He kept talking about this east side dad and I didn’t know what he was talking about. I went to this birthday party just a month or two ago with my daughter and literally everybody was this character. They looked like him, they were talking basically about water filters, and I was like “This is so crazy!” Patrick really was on to something.
On real life party experiences:
Judith Godrèche: It’s kind of horrible because I don’t think I’ve been to a lot of parties. Been working super young, I started working when I was 9. So, I was never kind of a teenager. But I guess, that like the most amazing thing that happened to me at a party was when Mick Jagger sang Happy Birthday to me. It’s kinda like I’m showing off a little bit, but it was of course here in Hollywood. I was 20-something. I had a movie called “Ridicule.” He liked the movie, and I was at a party and someone must have said it’s her birthday. So he started singing “Happy birthday.” At that time, cause I’m extremely old, we didn’t have like cameras. I would have never like filmed- you know today, you film everything, right? Nothing can escape from you. There’s no evidence of it.
Jason Schwartzman: I’m not a real party person. I was in a band at a young age and I was uncomfortable at those parties. I just wasn’t comfortable at any type of party with lots of girls. In many ways you got to say, “Oh wow grow up and just move on past your high school experience. How long can it scar you for?” But I think there’s a residue always. Everyone in my band was really tall and really handsome, and like always swimming and I was always pretending to fall into the pool with my clothes on so I didn’t have to take off my shirt. I was more awkward so I didn’t really go to a lot of parties. I would just go play our shows and then eat soup somewhere.
Taylor Schilling: I’ve never been to party… (laughs)
On shooting such an intimate film in just eleven days:
Judith Godrèche: We didn’t rehearse at all. Like we really, you know, shot the movie in eleven nights and had no rehearsal. We did a bit of improv, especially this guy (Schwartzman) who comes with crazy ideas which are always fantastic. But no we didn’t rehearse. It was shot so quickly, like we just met and did the movie. We didn’t even really know each other, at all.
Adam Scott: Well it was really fun to work that fast, I thought. And we shot the whole thing at night…We would come to work at 6 pm and go home at 6 am. We shot at 1 location, essentially. So it was kinda cool because we were making this movie when the rest of the city is asleep. We’re up in this house at the top of this hill doing this thing and it felt like we were doing- like we were doing something we weren’t supposed to be doing. And we were doing this secret project. You could literally look out on to the city and everyone’s asleep but we’re up making this weird movie. So it was kinda fun. It was a fun, familial atmosphere, and there was few of us, so it was kinda intimate.
Taylor Schilling: It is an interesting thing though, when you meet somebody and the chemistry… Chemistry is very, did I already say this? I dont know if I said this already, but it’s a very nebulous thing. It is kind of a cool thing, and I like that about my job. I get a chance to meet people and when it works it ends up being like “Oh! There’s a kindred fellow on this path.” Then you just sort of have this necklace of people that just stort of- you just have this connection that I think is quite intimate.
Adam Scott: And it’s weird because Taylor has a necklace of just the fingers of her costars and she brings it to work.
Taylor Schilling:Yeah it’s just a part of my process. They were all very interesting, so…