April 15, 2019
SXSW 2019

Why Writing and Directing Comedy Go Hand in Hand: Will Forte & 'Extra Ordinary'

Advice on comedy, straight from the mouths of some of the funniest people alive.

Will Forte never met Mike Ahern or Enda Loughman before jumping on board the pair of Irish director's debut feature. He didn't need to. The script for Extra Ordinary was just that good. All he needed to know was that they'd be directing. Why? Because according to Forte, in comedy, writing and directing go hand in hand.

In that respect, writing and acting may go hand in hand as well. While Forte and scene partner Claudia O'Doherty may bring some star power to the project, it's the relatively unknown comedian Maeve Higgins who truly carries the brunt of the project on her shoulders. And as we learned in this interview, she had a hand in writing the film as well. 

Higgins plays Rose, a sweet, lonely driving instructor in rural Ireland, who is gifted with supernatural abilities. Rose has a love/hate relationship with her 'talents' & tries to ignore the constant spirit requests from locals - to exorcize possessed rubbish bins or haunted gravel. Forte plays a washed-up pop star/satanist in his usual outlandish manner, O'Doherty his indifferent wife. Also joining us on the show is actor Barry Ward,  Roses' love interest in the film.

We sat down after the film's premiere at SXSW to discuss trusting actors to write, the advantages of comedy jamming with directors and "funnying" your way out of any problematic situations.


For more, see our ongoing list of coverage of the 2019 SXSW Film Festival.

No Film School's podcast and editorial coverage of the 2019 SXSW Film Festival is sponsored by Blackmagic Design.     

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I think I remember this. I may have worked on this in the 1990's maybe. Was there a remake of the film that tanked or something? comment soon. Thanks!

April 15, 2019 at 12:19PM

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April 16, 2019 at 6:25AM

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