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Have you met…Jason Segel?

Jason segel himym season 9While he has done several Hollywood films, Jason Segel became universally popular when he played Marshall Eriksen on television show How I Met Your Mother. He generates his own material and has created enough of a name for himself in Hollywood as an actor and writer that he can make things happen. Read on, as he speaks about Sex Tape—which he has also co-written—and How I Met Your Mother.
What was it like working with Cameron Diaz, director Jake Kasdan and your co-writer Nick Stoller again?
Luckily it was a group of really familiar faces. Jake and I have known each other since I was 18 years old. He also directed me in Geeks; so we kind of came up in the business together. And then Nick Stoller and I had done Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Muppets and The Five-Year Engagement together. I like working with my friends. There’s a familiarity, and you know each other’s rhythms and there’s a shorthand. And then when it was time to find my co-star, there was no doubt we wanted to reunite the team from Bad Teacher. And Cameron is unlike anyone I have ever met. She’s so beautiful, yet so lacking in pride or vanity. She was willing to go really hard at the comedy and so I think that was really necessary, because some of the scenes are completely humiliating.
Jason segel in sex tapeA lot of people have made sex tapes, some we know about and others we don’t. What, according to you, is the allure of making a sex tape?
I will answer that in the context of the movie. It’s a couple who, I think, is in a really relatable position—where they’re together for 15 years and kids enter the picture. And all of a sudden, there’s school lunches and homework and all of this stuff, and they realise that somewhere down the line, you have lost the intimacy you’ve had with your partner, and when they try to get it back, they realise that they’ve kind of forgotten it. It’s like trying to play a sport that you haven’t played in a long time. They just don’t have the skills anymore. So the sex tape is more a desperate gasp to express that they’re still hot for each other.
Jason segel new movie sex tapeHave you ever made a sex tape?
No, I have never made one. But if I do, you’ll be the first to know! (Laughs)
Some of the positions were quite challenging. Talk about the one in which you stand on your head and Cameron appears behind you.
Well, the sex tape is supposed to last for three hours. So the first challenge was to think of enough positions that would fill three hours. Some of those positions would not be a pleasure; strictly a novelty. Then, despite the various shapes I have been in throughout the years. I have always been able to do a headstand since I was a kid. So I have always tried to work it into everything I do. Some marvel at a giant guy doing headstands, and then as soon as I did it, Cameron, without missing a beat, hopped behind me and did what she did. It was not what I expected, but it just speaks to how relentlessly funny she is.
Some countries have very conservative views and want to censor everything; do you think that your film is risqué?
The interesting thing about the movie is that it feels incredibly risqué. But if you break it down frame by frame. Maybe with the exception on the headstand, it’s not particularly graphic. It alludes to things more, so the challenge in the positions was to have them sort of elicit an ‘Oh my god!’ response, without actually showing too much.
There is nudity in the film—granted, it’s not frontal. But while you have done nude scenes before, Cameron hasn’t. Did you do anything to make her feel comfortable?
She was totally comfortable! I don’t want to spoil the illusion, but we are wearing these modesty patches. Yes, she shows her butt, but we have seen her butt in those tiny bikinis that she’s worn before. The only thing that is different now is that you can see her crack. But it felt like a couple of comedians really going for it. We laughed a lot. On a side note, I am more comfortable being actually naked than I am in this weird, modesty tube-sock, that I have to wear out of respect and it’s just humiliating.
Your clothes in the movie are not exactly flattering, but what is your personal sense of style like? What makes you feel sexy?
I don’t know that there is anything that I could wear that would make me feel sexy. I always think that a T-shirt is always sexy. If you are asking me what I find sexy on a woman, I don’t think it’s fancy lingerie. When a woman wears lingerie, I am being dictated. If we are going to have sex, I much prefer it to be a natural process.
You haven’t answered my question about your fashion sense.
I am not that aware of fashion, but I am aware of feeling  comfortable, and I like feeling, as I started to take care of myself more and more, I liked the idea of wearing something that reflects that and I don’t know any designers or brand names or anything like that. I am a total boy. But I do like to look nice and I do wear suits.
You say you’ve been taking care of yourself more. What is it that you do to stay in shape?
I was really bummed out, so disappointed to learn that there was absolutely no mystery and that it’s just eating healthy and exercising. It breaks my heart. So I try to do that now on a daily basis. And Cameron said something smart, that it should be a way of life and it shouldn’t be something you do for a month leading up to a movie in a desperate, frantic, I-have-to-be-on-screen-in-a-few-weeks kind of thing. It’s just daily maintenance, because it’s not about how you look in a movie; it’s about how you feel at home, alone. So I am just trying to live right.
How i met your mother castNow that How I Met Your Mother has come to an end, are you looking at other TV pilot scripts, or have you moved onto movies? What genres interest you?
What I am going to do right now is to take a nice break from television. How I Met Your Mother lasted for about a decade, which is a long time, I started the show when I was 25 years old, and now I am 34. It was a wonderful, long run and I was blessed to be a part of it. Now I want to be really deliberate about my choices. I’m also writing a lot, and I tend to write comedies. That’s where my mind goes, but I also just did a movie called The End Of The Tour, in which I play American novelist and writer, David Foster Wallace. I think my goal is to do stuff that moves me in some way.
What do you miss most about How I Met Your Mother?
The thing that I miss the most is the family aspect of the show. You work with people for that long; it’s longer than I have known anybody, except my family. It was really every day together and you watched people grow, and get married and have children and all that. I really love my work—the acting and the writing—but what I love the most is getting to know people and I think that’s what it’s going to be all about at the end of the day. And that’s what I miss the most.
What do you miss about your character, Marshall Eriksen?
I wore pyjamas a lot. I ate a lot of sandwiches. They had this great metaphor on that show—whenever our characters got stoned, they used to call it ‘eating sandwiches’. So there were a lot of scenes, where they would cut to us and we would be eating giant sandwich and talking nonsense. Those were my favourite scenes, because I love sandwiches!
Photo Courtesy: CBS, Sony Pictures

Written By : Noel de Souza

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