Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Biggest Exhibitors Nix 'Crouching Tiger' Netflix/IMAX Plan; What Happens Now? Biggest Exhibitors Nix 'Crouching Tiger' Netflix/IMAX Plan; What Happens Now? BOI's List of the 007 Best Bond Villains (In Honor of the 50th Anniversary of "Goldfinger") BOI's List of the 007 Best Bond Villains (In Honor of the 50th Anniversary of "Goldfinger") Will Fox's 'Runner" be A-Maze-ing?  This Week's Previews and Predictions Will Fox's 'Runner" be A-Maze-ing? This Week's Previews and Predictions Football Fans Make 'Draft Day' a VOD Repeat--This Week's ITunes VOD/EST Top 15 Chart Football Fans Make 'Draft Day' a VOD Repeat--This Week's ITunes VOD/EST Top 15 Chart Clint Set For Christmas Exclusive on 'American Sniper', Guy Ritchie Gets Moved Back 7 Months and 'Godzilla 2' Set for 2018 Clint Set For Christmas Exclusive on 'American Sniper', Guy Ritchie Gets Moved Back 7 Months and 'Godzilla 2' Set for 2018 China Debut Moves 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' To Top Of Overseas Box Office China Debut Moves 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' To Top Of Overseas Box Office Johnny Depp Returns In First Trailer For Lionsgate's "Mortdecai" Johnny Depp Returns In First Trailer For Lionsgate's "Mortdecai" Will "Turtles" Overtake Rocket Raccoon?  Do Moviegoers Want to Go "Into The Storm"?  And All Aboard For The "Hundred-Foot Journey"  This Week's Predictions and Previews Will "Turtles" Overtake Rocket Raccoon? Do Moviegoers Want to Go "Into The Storm"? And All Aboard For The "Hundred-Foot Journey" This Week's Predictions and Previews Double Barrel "The Imitation Game" News: New Trailer/Opening Night Selection At BFL London Fest Double Barrel "The Imitation Game" News: New Trailer/Opening Night Selection At BFL London Fest Hollywood Singing "We Are The World" As International Box Office Continues To Wallop Domestic Hollywood Singing "We Are The World" As International Box Office Continues To Wallop Domestic Industry Executives Carpou, Davies, Hollis and Alperovich Among Invitees For AMPAS Membership Industry Executives Carpou, Davies, Hollis and Alperovich Among Invitees For AMPAS Membership When Jim Met Eli: My 20 Minutes With The Late, Great Eli Wallach When Jim Met Eli: My 20 Minutes With The Late, Great Eli Wallach Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep and Brenton Thwaites In Trailer # 2 For Weinstein's "The Giver" Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep and Brenton Thwaites In Trailer # 2 For Weinstein's "The Giver" Next Week's Box Office Battle: Cruise & Blunt vs. Hazel & Augustus Next Week's Box Office Battle: Cruise & Blunt vs. Hazel & Augustus What To See in Imax, 3D and D-Box This Summer... What To See in Imax, 3D and D-Box This Summer... Warners Sets November 18, 2016 for Harry Potter Spinoff "Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them" Warners Sets November 18, 2016 for Harry Potter Spinoff "Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them" Nibble Bits--Kevin Hart's 30 Second NBA Playoff Spot Nibble Bits--Kevin Hart's 30 Second NBA Playoff Spot Sony/Tri-Star Dates "Untitled Robert Zemeckis" for 10/2/15 Sony/Tri-Star Dates "Untitled Robert Zemeckis" for 10/2/15 Box Office Insider's Sit Down With "Earth To Echo" Director Dave Green Box Office Insider's Sit Down With "Earth To Echo" Director Dave Green Top 10 Johnny Depp Performances Top 10 Johnny Depp Performances

Watch as Seth Rogen Tells Producers to Never Give Up if They Have a Good Story

Photo of Nicole Hansen By Nicole Hansen | Box Office Insider August 15, 2014 at 11:47AM

Video at the Produced By Conference this past June. Outgoing Producers Guild Co-President Mark Gordon led a panel with Seth Rogen, his partner Evan Goldberg. While many reporters and bloggers exploited Rogen and Goldberg's comments, aspiring producers instead found great tips on getting ahead and seeing no production job as too small.
1
Produced By Panel with Seth Rogan

At the Produced By Conference this past Saturday, outgoing Producers Guild President Mark Gordon led a panel with Seth Rogen, his partner Evan Goldberg and their producing partner James Weaver. James came onto the team originally as their assistant on Funny People, and after a few projects, became a producer himself. Seth said James is more of a "yin to their yang" — he can talk to studios or agents and they get to be creative and immature. Evan said the fact that he and Seth dressed like homeless potheads and James tucked in his shirt helped him fill that role, and after their first few movies together, he morphed into a full blown producing partner.

Evan and Seth met at Hebrew class before their bar mitzvahs. Evan was writing at 12 and Seth was already doing stand-up. They would watch Bottle Rocket, Pulp Fiction and Bad Lieutenant, thinking they would see naked women, but instead seeing a lot of Harvey Keitel's private parts. They decided to start writing when they did their own spoof of Space Balls – described basically Blues Brothers meets Reservoir Dogs with a giant menorah. Seth directed and Evan actually starred in it playing ALL the roles. It was so bad they decided to start writing and compiled the stories of their teen years into the script they wrote: Superbad. More on that later.

Both Evan and Seth loved Mel Brooks because he wasn't afraid to do crazy stuff, and although his subjects are controversial, he is able to get away with them. Like him, they plan to do non-comedic subjects like Elephant Man or The Fly, but as Elephant Man versus The Fly. Just kidding; they want to stick to comedy. Seth thinks anything can be made funny and would rather take something you don't want to think about and make it enjoyable, like Dr. Strangelove. So that even though they're comedic, they have real stuff that you can relate to. Their film 50/50 actually came about from telling their friend, Will Reiser, who had survived cancer, to write about and put his heart and soul into it.

Seth's opportunity to produce came after working on Freaks and Geeks with Judd Apatow, For years after the series was cancelled, Seth stuck around and tried to help with everything. He was in Judd's office when The 40-Year-Old Virgin was green-lit and asked to be a co-producer, promising to show up and help out. So he was on the set, in the editing room, and did whatever needed to be done. He recommends that aspiring producers "be around a lot" with their mentors on productions and learn how to to do the job. By the time Seth and Evan were producing their third movie, they were on their own and didn't realize how difficult it was actually to be the "on set" producer.

Seth says to get your first movie done, just make it yourself. They find talent on YouTube: This is the End was made because they saw it as a short video there, and Seth's wife even got into the business that way. Their own plan as kids with Superbad was to make it themselves. Seth remembered that the videos they made as kids sucked, but they had to go through it, and they encourage everyone who wants to be a producer to do that as well.

When it comes to jokes, their process is that it needs to work on the set but also by testing the sh** out of their movies, with so many jokes that they always have backups. When doing test screenings, they record the audience to see where the laughs come. Sometimes people laugh at jokes you don't think will ever work.

Seth and Evan worked together on three movies including Knocked Up before Superbad, the script they made together. Their opportunity came after Judd Apatow made Talladega Nights, when he was able to pitch it to Sony Pictures' Co-Chair Amy Pascal, who had asked what other projects Apatow had. Luckily, Judd himself was busy with other projects, so Seth and Evan were allowed to do their own thing, including hire their own directors and have a lot of control. By taking so long to get Superbad made, Seth aged out of the part based on himself, and the role was cast to Jonah Hill. Their advice to young filmmakers is "just don't give up" on it if you have a good story.

Nicole Hansen is the President of Green Galaxy Enterprises and a member of the Producers Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild.


This article is related to: Seth Rogen, Produced By Conference, Mark Gordon, Evan Goldberg, James Weaver, Superbad, Mel Brooks, The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Freaks and Geeks, Amy Pascal, Filmmaker Toolkit, In the Spotlight, Video, Video: In Their Own Words


E-Mail Updates





Recent Comments

Upcoming Imax Titles

2014
9/5 Forrest Gump
9/26 The Equalizer

Upcoming D-Box Titles

2014
9/19 The Maze Runner

Upcoming 3D Titles

2014
9/26 The Equalizer
10/3 Annabelle

Studio Market Share

Thru August 3rd
1. Fox 18.1% 1,156m
2. Warner Brothers 15.7 998m

Major Film Festivals

8/6 - 8/16 Locarno
8/27 - 9/6 Venice Film Festival