Comedy sequels are hard to do, especially when there is a 20 year gap in between films. But for Dumb and Dumber To stars Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, they found reprising their roles for a sequel not that difficult. In the film, Harry (Daniels) believes that he is the father, and goes out on a search to find the daughter he never knew he had. Joining him is his loyal pal, Llyod (Carrey). Together they will go across the country, get themselves into trouble, and try to out prank each other.
We had a chance to sit down at the Dumb and Dumber To press conference to talk to them about the sequel, why it took so long for them to do one, working together, and more.
Dumb And Dumber To is a film that is 20 years in the making, with fans calling for a sequel to the original since it first came out back in 1994. While Jim Carrey has been known to be reluctant to reprise his roles in sequels, he reveals why he made an exception this time, “I like to wait until the executives pass on, before I do a sequel. I prefer that. I like to bury them, and then do the sequel.”
On that same note, Jeff Daniels has never done a sequel to a film, and he reveals why he returned to reprise his role in the film.
I haven’t done much of anything, at all, so it was very nice. To be honest, it was a little bit like The Newsroom. That was the closest sequel experience I’ve had,” he said. “I think the reason why this sequel happened was because, over the years, the fans came coming up to both of us,” Daniels explained.
“It was a fan-driven thing. They wouldn’t leave us alone,” Carrey added.
While 20 years is a long time in between sequels, Carrey and Daniels didn’t seem to have any difficulty getting back into character. Carrey explains, “I start thinking about dumb stuff, about a week or so before. Lloyd is a part of me now. I just wack the tooth out. With some parts, you have to really get totally into the politics of the character. There are a couple of things with Lloyd. You wack the tooth out, and you think really selfishly. You just go, “Mine! Mine! Mine!,” in your mind. Also, there’s the love between the characters. That’s important. You can get away with anything, as long as there’s real love between the characters, like The Honeymooners. They were yelling at each other through the whole show, but you knew that Ralph loved Alice. That’s the bottom line.”
“With the first one, you’re just hoping it works,” said Daniels. “From day one, on this one, it was just right there. Every day was fun. The first two weeks was just the two of us. We didn’t bring Kathleen in yet. So, we were slamming, every day, all day. It was a great two weeks. It really was. And it came back, right away.”
Dumb and Dumber To also marks the first time that Carrey and Kathleen Turner have worked together since Peggy Sue Got Married. When talking about the long-awaited reunion, Carrey said, ” She was the first big star I worked with (on Peggy Sue Got Married), and she was great then, but such a trooper now. It was amazing that she did this. There’s no ego in comedy. Keenan Wayans used to say that to me. You’ve gotta throw it out the window. There’s no place for it. And she just jumped in and did the most thankless possible choice, and I love her for it.”
Should the audience respond to the sequel to studio expectations, there will most likely be a sequel. But will the characters be the same if we have to wait another 20 years before we see them on the big screen again? According to Daniels, “I think they’ll be exactly the same.”
“Lloyd will have lost an eye in a bar brawl. They don’t have an arc. There’s no life arc for these two. They’re going to fall into the grave stupid.” Carrey added.
But Carrey doesn’t quite member how Dumb and Dumber To started, he said, “I don’t remember the genesis of this whole thing. It’s been a lot of years of listening to fans, and stuff like that. I did call the Farrellys at some point and say, ‘First of all, we’ve gotta work together, period.’ As you get older, you value these things. I wanted to be with the gang again. I wanted to hang out with [Jeff Daniels] and the Farrellys. It’s just really about that. I wanted to go have some fun and do something dumb. Also, the audience who saw it as kids has grown up. It’s a new audience to have fun with. They want to see it again.’
Going back to the subject of sequels, Carrey explained why he was originally so hesitant to do them, and his new perspective on sequels. “It’s cooler, when you wait. A sequel, when you wait 20 years, becomes a chic-quel,” said Carrey. “I think I just coined a huge phrase that’s going to change everything for everyone.” On which of his films he would like to see become a sequel, Carrey added, “I don’t know. I don’t concentrate on sequels, but I’m not as resistant as I used to be to them. There are certain characters that I would loved to have done sequels with. I would have loved to have done a Lemony Snicket sequel because it was an opportunity to do a lot of wacked out characters. I don’t have hard, fast rules, creatively. If it sounds fun, in the moment, I’ll go there.”
Dumb and Dumber To opens in theaters on November 14.