Director Todd Phillips Discusses The Hangover Part II Trailers, Production and Potential Success
04.06.11 by Ryan
The teaser trailer for the upcoming sequel The Hangover Part II simply revealed that "the Wolfpack is back," while the full-length trailer answered the question, "what are Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis gonna do — wake up in another hotel after a night of debauchery they can't remember?"
The answer, of course, was a resounding yes — it is called
The Hangover Part II after all — and if the trailer felt the same as the first Hangover, there may be good reason. In an interview with ComingSoon at the recent CinemaCon, co-writer and director Todd Phillips revealed that shooting the sequel felt a lot like the first.
[F]or me, day one of shooting The Hangover Part II was like we never stopped shooting the other movie. Surely, Zach and I had just done Due Date together and that came out six months ago, but everyone just fell into their thing, and there wasn't the nervousness that you always have at the beginning of your movie of like, "Where is this character coming from? What am I doing?" Everybody was so informed as to what they were playing, and I was informed as to what movie I was making. The cameraman was informed. It was just sort of was, in a weird way, so easy. The difficult part was just being in Bangkok and just being disconnected from everything else. It's not a very film-friendly culture, you know? So that part was difficult and the language and all that stuff, crews, it's harder, but the movie was just such a fun time because we all just sort of knew our roles.
Phillips said that, for the sequel, he did turn to his cast for story advice.
I would pitch them ideas as I saw them around and we all stayed in touch because we're friends. Even when we were shooting Due Date I was like, "Do you think Alan, dah, dah, dah, dah?" and he'd laugh or not, but they also let me make the movie, which is super-great. I definitely—just because I trust them and because it's their movie as much as mine—involved them in it, just updating them. Ed'll send an email, "Where's the script at? Dah, dah, dah," and I'll give him like bullet points of what it is. He'll be like, "That sounds great," or "Why?" So yeah, in some ways just a little bit just out of just the normal just staying in touch communication.
Phillips talked about the two trailers released so far — "I cut that teaser where they're just walking, it's just like confidence like, 'Hey, you're either with us or you're not. We don't care. Come or don't,'" said Phillips of the teaser trailer — and promised that there's far more in the movie than could be revealed in a trailer.
Well, I mean, the truth is we're constrained by the fact that we're R-rated, so you can't give — even the trailer you just saw, that's a PG-13 trailer, so by the nature of the movie, we're holding so much stuff back just because you can't show it. So believe me, you won't believe the R-rated surprises that exist in The Hangover that you won't see touched on in commercials or trailers, really.
Despite the success of the first Hangover, Phillips isn't taking it for granted that the sequel will be hit, especially opening in a summer filled with big-budget blockbusters and popular sequels like Kung Fu Panda 2, which opens the same weekend as The Hangover Part II.
I think this summer is gonna be a blood battle all around. I think there's a lotta big movies coming out. I mean, it's scary. I don't think anything's a sure thing, even Kung Fu Panda 2 or Hangover 2. It's just like, who knows what's gonna happen? But it's fun, it's part of the fun.
Of course, there is one way to ensure another hit and that is to make a better movie than the first. Luckily, the director feels that he did. "I think it's a funnier film, and I think it's a more epic film," Phillips recently told MTV
The Hangover Part II opens on May 26 and co-stars Justin Bartha, Mike Tyson, and Ken Jeong.