Will Ferrell is taking a different approach to comedy with his new movie, Casa de mi Padre: he speaks only Spanish in the film! We had the chance to sit down with Ferrell at a recent press day in San Francisco to pick his brain about how the idea for the project came to him and how he got help with his Spanish from costars like Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal. The funny man also revealed his favorite Spanish phrase — which isn't exactly the best conversation starter.
Spanish is actually my first language. What does that mean? It means a lot, I have a lot of diarrhea. So this movie is so different from what we've seen from you before. Can you tell me a little bit about the Genesis or the project. I just thought start funny to put myself in a Spanish language film and fully commit to speaking Spanish as well as I possibly could and just surround myself with an all Latino cast and I just thought that would be unique and just a great back drop to do kind of an insane comedy. And how much Spanish did you actually know before? Spanish is actually my first language. Oh, okay. Yes. I didn't learn English until two years ago. all the moves I've done prior to this have all been phonetic. Okay. In English. Yeah. That makes sense. Yeah. No, I've known very little Spanish. So I just had a kind of diligently work with a translator and obviously the cast helped me at times and and that sort of thing. So, were you feeling confident that first day on that set or were you kind of nervous to get going? No, horribly nervous, yeah, wondering why decided to do this, like, this is a terrible decision, and considering I have a two page monologue. The scene in the movie where I, you know, I kind of describe my idea of the perfect woman, I had, that was the first day of filming and it was crazy. And your character was actually one of the more straight laced of all characters in the movie Yeah. Did you ever Did you ever consider wanting to play one of the splashier roles, like one of the villains? No, no, I think I kind of had to be the center of the movie, you know, and since I'm the only non-native speaker, it didn't make sense for me to be one of the more arch guys. So, I kind of love the way you know the character that I play. Do you have any Spanish phrases hat you are still using all the time? What does that mean? Means a lot. I have a lot of diarrhea. Oh okay. Yeah. Seems like an important one. Yeah. Yeah. t comes in handy a lot. Comes in handy a lot. Unfortunately it comes in handy a lot for me personally, I don't know why. I don't know. I think I need to go see a doctor. That's about it. The problem is it was such an intense period of time and once the movie ended I kind of was like ok enough of spanish for right now, instead of using it as an opportunity to become really fluent I went on to my regular lazy life so now it's just gone. Forgot a lot of it, yeah. That's too bad. That's too bad. It comes back. But at least you know you'll be able to get to the bathroom, though, the next time you're in Spain, and that's all that really matters. Yeah, if I'm on a flight.