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'The Other Guys': Behind the Scenes

Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg have a crazy night…all in one shot

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We’ve all had those nights. It’s early morning, you’re nine whiskeys in the hole, and a woman is spraying Mace at you while you urinate off a pool table. For Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg’s crazy after-hours moment in The Other Guys, director Adam McKay knew he wanted something special. ”We were just going to tell it through iPhone photos,” says McKay. ”But that seemed too boring.” So he decided on a single tracking shot that, using a special camera to minimize changes from take to take, depicted the characters’ increasingly drunken revelry in a series of frozen scenes. To film the sequence, the actors had to hold their compromising positions for long periods of time. ”When Will is biting the priest, he had to [keep] his mouth on his arm for a good 15 to 20 minutes,” says McKay. ”He did it all blas√©, like it was just regular work.” And it wasn’t only actors who didn’t move: Some of the extras were regular bar patrons who happened to be there when they started shooting. McKay thought it all added to the atmosphere. ”It felt like the kind of place where tequila suddenly becomes a good idea at 2 o’clock in the morning.”