A Chat with Peter Farrelly (“The Three Stooges”)

The initial reaction to the idea of a new Three Stooges film for 2012 brought no end of moans and groans from Moe, Larry & Curly purists, but after Bobby and Peter Farrelly’s film hit theaters, many were surprised by the fact that it didn’t completely suck. Indeed, it was actually about as good as anyone could’ve hoped, thanks in no small part to the Farrelly’s devotion to making the best possible tribute to the comedic trio that they possibly could, aided in no small part by the efforts of Chris Diamantopoulos (Moe), Sean Hayes (Larry), and Will Sasso (Curly). Bullz-Eye talked to Peter Farrelly in conjunction with the film hitting DVD, and he spoke about the trials and tribulations of getting the film made, his Zen attitude toward the lengthy casting process, and his continued optimism that the Farrellys’ next film will indeed be “Dumb & Dumber 2.”

Bullz-Eye: Not that you haven’t been asked this more than a few times, but…what’s your very first memory of experiencing the Three Stooges?

Peter Farrelly: You know, the God’s honest truth…? I don’t remember it. Because they were always there. I’ve been watching the Stooges since I could turn on a TV. But I guess the thing I recall the most is, for some reason, I went through a period when I was, like, a freshman in high school where they were on every day from I think 4 – 5 PM, and I just remember it being the highlight of that winter. [Laughs.] Every day, because it was freezing out, you’d just get in the house and turn on the TV. Every kid in my school at that time was watching. For some reason, they were going through some sort of a renaissance. Everybody was watching them that year.

BE: Not that you guys have ever been afraid of testing boundaries, but it would seem to be pretty daunting to update the Three Stooges. I think the last time anyone tried it was with “The Three Robonic Stooges.“

PF: Yeah, we knew it wasn’t gonna be easy, but we love the Stooges and…the God’s honest truth is that we felt like they were going away. I had little kids…well, they’re 11 and 13 years old now, but the last few years, I asked their friends, and two-thirds of them did not know the Three Stooges. Or they had heard of them, but they didn’t really know who they were. And that bothered us, because we’re huge Stooges fans – they’ve given me more laughs than anybody – and we wanted to bring them back. But we knew that…you know, look, anytime you do anything like this… There was a huge, huge opportunity to fall on our faces, but I did believe that it should be done, the movie should be made, and I felt very confident that we could pull it off.

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The Man Who Would Be Edgar Pudwacker: Matt Damon’s 15 Funniest Appearances

On March 12th, Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass will be together again in theaters for their latest action thriller, “Green Zone,” a film set in the chaotic early days of the Iraqi War when no one could be trusted and every decision could detonate unforeseen consequences. Damon and Greengrass have clearly proven that they’ve got chemistry, what with their work together on “The Bourne Supremacy” and “The Bourne Ultimatum,” and we’re obviously looking forward to checking it out, but…well, here’s the thing: Damon’s a great action hero, but he can be pretty hilarious, too, and “Green Zone” doesn’t exactly look like what you’d call a laff riot.

To help cleanse your palate either before or after you’ve seen the film, however, we’ve compiled 15 of our favorite occasions when Matt Damon made with the funny. Your personal mileage may vary, but we’re guessing that, at the very least, you’ll get more laughs out of these clips than you will from “Green Zone.”

(Plus, don’t forget to head over to our “Green Zone” contest, where we’re giving away an Xbox 360!)

1. Glory Daze (1996): Okay, we’ll be honest with you: Damon’s barely in this film. It’s really a vehicle for his longtime buddy, Ben Affleck, who sports some seriously douche-tastic facial hair throughout the film. Although the remarkable number of recognizable faces to be found within the cast make it worth checking out (Sam Rockwell, Alyssa Milano, Matthew McConaughey, John Rhys-Davies, Kristin Bauer, French Stewart, Brendan Fraser, Leah Remini, Meredith Salinger, Mary Woronov, and Spaulding Gray all make appearances), the predominant reason we’ve included “Glory Daze” – which is, for the record, explores the hesitation all college graduates experience before entering the real world – is because no matter how many films he may eventually have to his credit, Matt Damon should never be allowed to escape the fact that, even though it was only for a few fleeting moments, he once played a character named Edward Pudwacker.

2. Dogma (1999): Kevin Smith movies aren’t generally where one goes to find eyebrow-raising theological discourse, but there are moments within this epic comedy that do indeed inspire such a reaction. Here, Damon – playing a fallen angel named Loki – proceeds to take a leisurely stroll through an airport and, in one brief conversation, casually destroy everything this poor nun has ever believed in. Why? “I just love to fuck with the clergy,” he says. “I love to keep those guys on their toes.”

3. Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001): It’s not quite on the level of Buck Henry pitching a sequel to “The Graduate,” but watching Gus Van Sant counting his money as he makes “Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season” is still pretty funny.

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