Jason Bateman in Bad Words. (Focus Features)
Sorry, we're still washing some of the sarcasm off after talking with Jason Bateman
about his new film, Bad Words
. So when we say "worst interview ever," we really mean "BEST INTERVIEW OF ALL TIME."
Okay, maybe the sarcasm is still there. But, seriously, this guy is funny.
Bateman's new film is a bit of a change-up for the Arrested Development
star. He's in the director's chair for the first time on a feature and he's also in front of the camera, starring as Guy Trilby, a "misanthrope" as Bateman puts it. The story is one you've never heard before. For reasons we discover later on, Trilby enters and wins a kid's spelling bee, taunting elementary schoolers along the way. He then sets his sights on a much bigger fish, the Golden Quill National Spelling Bee, where he can grab a giant audience to witness his evil plan.
Trilby is a Bad Santa-type role for Bateman, but it's a bit more nuanced. It's not that he's a bad guy, he's just stopped caring about anything or anyone. Something has damaged Trilby and the results are hilarious, but we also want to know why he's being such a dick.
In the the Sarcasm Hall of Fame, there's Bateman and then there's everyone else. We interviewed the Bad Words
funnyman recently in San Francisco and were immediately in his crosshairs. "You next? Get the hell in here." Sitting down with him, it was obvious right away the interview would not be straightforward type. He lives to screw with journalists.