When I think Will Ferrell, I think two things right away. The first thing I think is hilarious. Whether it’s back in his Saturday Night Live days or from films like ANCHORMAN or TALLADEGA NIGHTS or even one-off projects like his one-man show on Broadway, where he took on George W. Bush in You’re Welcome America: One Final night with George W. Bush. The other thing I think of instantly when I think of Will Ferrell is how freakishly tall he is. After meeting him in person though, I can say that everything I thought I knew about Will Ferrell is wrong.
First of all, he is only 6’3”. Sure, that is still tall but for some reason, I always imagined him as a giant. Maybe it’s the whole ELF thing. More importantly though, sitting down to interview Ferrell is actually quite a sobering experience. That said, this might have something to do with the tone of the film he is promoting. EVERYTHING MUST GO is most certainly not a comedy and Ferrell wants to ensure we are all clear on that ahead of time.
When Ferrell says “low key”, it might help to contextualize a bit further what he means. After Nick realizes what is going on, he proceeds to spend the next few days sitting out on his front lawn amongst all his belongings, drinking constantly. It requires him to play fairly subdued the majority of the time. “Most of the stuff I’ve done has been heightened and overplayed at times,” Ferrell says, although to be fair, we all knew that already. “To get to be more subtle, to be more real, that was a gift.”
“I refuse to label it like that even. I just think it’s a great story. It’s a story that is true to life and life has moments that are funny, life has moments that are sad and life has moments that are ambiguous. It’s not a neat, little package and that’s what this movie is.”