Interview: That Awkward Moment
6th February 2014
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When you guys looked at the script and started to work on the characters, were there moments when you hated yourselves or hated your character for some of the things that you said or did? 

Michael B. Jordan: "With my character I asked him so many times to change the name. I did not want to be ‘Mikey’. My characters is the guy that really wants to make a relationship work, even though they’re not in love anymore. Mikey represents the character that really just wanted to make it work but just couldn’t." 

Were there moments when you wanted to slap him in the face? 

Michael B. Jordan: "A little bit, that’s when the inner me came out, going 'listen, you’ll be fine, okay, get back in the game, be around your friends, go to bars…'"

What is the game? 

Michael B. Jordan: "Having commitment issues, okay, I just wanted to go out there and just drink with my buddies and have a good time and check boxes." 

Miles Teller: "Mike’s the most unlike his character, I can tell you that. I ’m so used to seeing Mike a hundred percent in control of his feelings, but with his character his feelings are really in the palm of her hand, so it was fun for me to watch."  

Zac Efron: "What I like the most about Jason is that he tries to be honest. That’s something I’ve always believed in from day one in a relationship; honesty is the most important. And it's difficult, especially in scenarios like in this movie, when you're young and single and figuring out your own life. I think that’s why guys can relate to this movie. We walk a careful balance between really being good guys deep down and caring and sort of waking up the next day and feeling sort of guilty for our commitment issues. But at the same time we have to live our lives. This is the first look really into what it's I think like to be a guy dating at our age." 

Tom Gormican: "You should want to slap his character through most of the movie. But that’s sort of how guys in their 20’s are. You should also hope that he gets his comeuppance and I think he does." 

Zac Efron: "And he learns a lesson at the end."  

As a group, gentlemen, you find yourselves in some precarious situations, particularly without clothes on in this movie.  I’m thinking of not just the love scenes, but the toilet…

Miles Teller:  "I apologise for my nakedness in the movie."

No need...

Miles Teller:  "I know. But I just want to publicly say I’m sorry to each and every one of you for that." 

But that has to be challenging, so, how does one approach that? 

Tom Gormican: "That’s my fault, by the way. I forgot to tell Miles to work out. That’s not a Miles issue. 

Miles Teller: I’m an actor, I’m not-"

Tom Gormican:  "In shape?" 

Miles Teller:  "An athlete. In the script it says “Daniel planks the toilet,” and so I show up and I didn’t know how naked I was going to be. I was on antibiotics, I felt pretty disgusting and bloated and fat and then I get to the bathroom and it's just a very small. So I literally was like I don’t think I’m going to fit. And Tom’s like, “You’ll fit, you’ll fit.” 

Tom, what was your inspiration in putting this film together? And did any of it resonate to you in your real life, your authentic life? 

Michael B. Jordan: "He is Jason." 

Tom Gormican: "Just the toilet scene, really. You start with that and the movie sort of writes itself… No, I wanted to see a revitalisation of the romantic comedy genre, because it's one of my favourites. I also wanted to put a different spin on it and have the movie take place from really a guy’s perspective, because I felt like that’s something that we haven’t seen before. And you create a sort of unpredictable movie from the guy’s perspective and I think girls want to see that peek behind the curtain and guys actually see something from their own lives and their relationships in it." 

You guys have shown a lot of skin in a lot of things that you've done. Is there a limit to what you're willing to do on screen? 

Zac Efron: "If there’s a specific reason for it, if there’s a motivation behind it, if there’s, if it moves, yeah, if it's authentic and helps the story, it's necessary, then absolutely, there’s nothing I wouldn’t try, you know." 

Miles Teller: "I just need a heads up."

Zac Efron: "A couple weeks."  

Miles Teller: "A couple months…"

Tom Gormican:  "Miles just needs to know there’s a camera somewhere near him and he’ll do absolutely anything." [laughs]

The movie’s called That Awkward Moment - what's been the most stand out awkward moment in your real lives? 

Miles Teller: "When I was 10 me and my sister were trying to come up with a game to play and we set out, we had a basketball and a baseball so we said we’ll play ‘basketball’. It was a rubber basketball and I hit the basketball and knocked myself out with the bat. And that wasn’t that awkward but what was awkward was people's comments as I gave myself a huge lump on my head and a concussion. People kept saying, 'Where you been?'"

Tom Gormican:  "It was super awkward when he was taken away by Child Services. Really crazy moment." 

Miles Teller: "Mom, this is your fault." 

Tom Gormican:  "It's my fault. Sorry." 

Zac Efron: "My most awkward moment was probably when I slipped and hit my face on a fountain in my house. The cool part of that is there is a fountain in my house." 

Tom Gormican:  "Michael B. Jordan and Miles Teller and Imogen are looking forward to the moment when they can have a fountain in their house." 

Michael B. Jordan: "Yeah. I live in a duplex…"

Zac Efron: "Yeah, I guess if you leave your fountain on and then leave the house for a week, which you're not supposed to do, it splashes and gets water on the floor. So I’m a klutz and I slipped and smashed my face onto it and, it was very awkward. What was more awkward was telling everyone about it… 

Zac, you successfully overcame some tough times last year, what are some of the good things that came out of that? 

Zac Efron: "I feel like I’m in a great place and I’m glad I'm here, to share this moment with everybody and be present for all of it because it was an interesting year. I learned so many things, so much, but the best part of it was being able to reflect upon this experience and realise how much I had learned about myself and the kind of man I want to be and this movie – and these guys, and coming back to it, coming to New York – exemplifies it; I couldn’t be happier."  

In the movie you have this moment where you explain the number one warning sign when a woman starts off her conversation by saying, “So, like what’s this?” “So, we need to talk,” etc. Are there any other warning signs from a guy’s perspective?

Tom Gormican:  "I would just like to point out that it's not always from the female perspective that the “So” happens, just so that we’re clear. It's not always women wanting to be in a relationship."

Miles Teller: "You can see it in their eyes, I think. Some girls have crazy eyes. [laughs] You can spot that. So just look in her eyes for a second and you’ll see what’s going on." 

Tom Gormican:  "I think the guys would agree about this, this sort of theme that the movie relies upon and the thing that happens is basically you realise that being there for somebody when they need you and it's difficult is what relationships are about." 

Zac Efron: "That example, the “So” is, that’s not a rule by any means. I don’t think there are any rules in sort of real face-to-face relationships or interactions. I think just authenticity and being yourself is always without a doubt the best plan of action." 

Miles Teller: "I don’t trust a girl who doesn’t eat." 

Tom Gormican:  "So he’s moving out of Los Angeles."  

How do you relate to your characters? 

Zac Efron: "In what ways don’t I relate to my character? I loved him a lot, at the core of it he’s a good person that’s getting through finding love. And that’s really what I’m doing right now in my life. I can relate to him a lot."

Tom Gormican: "The idea of someone trying to figure out what a relationship really is really appealed to Zac."

It's clear you guys get along - how was it on set?

Tom Gormican: "They had the best time of their entire lives-"

All: Yeah, sure.

Tom Gormican:  "They couldn’t imagine working for a more prepared and emotionally in touch director. I think that’s what they emailed me…"

Miles Teller: "Yeah, like he said, we had a lot of fun but at the same time we were on a really tight schedule. This was an independent film, fully. We made this thing in 25 days, so it's pretty tough. It really looks like a big studio comedy but it wasn’t." 

Zac Efron: "This was the first film that I was actually a producer on. I just felt like I was instrumental in putting it together so I took a lot of pride in how this film was made. From the ground up, movies are not just made by actors or directors. There’s a whole crew. It is a massive undertaking making a film. This was guerilla filmmaking in every sense; we were out in the freezing cold, we had a very low budget and all these guys hung in there under pretty extraordinary circumstances. We did have fun but I think at the end of the day we’re really just proud of what we did."

Do you guys have any friendship rules that you follow when dating or just in general at all? 

Michael B. Jordan: "One of the funniest things about the film is we have all these expectations, like we try to have normal relationships and encounters and there's no set rules we go by. Just because we did a film that have some awkward moments that we highlight doesn’t mean we live our lives dedicated to those things. You try to be honest, and look for real moments. You know, when you first meet somebody they put the best foot forward most of the time. And as you get to know somebody, you slowly start to you know that real inner person starts to come out and then you just use your best judgement. I think if you're a good person that comes through. If you're not, that’ll come through. And that’s just how you’ve got to like live, period. Whether a friendship or relationship." 

Miles Teller: "And for me, as far as friendship goes, I think you truly get out of it what you put into it. Most of my friends I've known since I was 14 and I lived in Florida. I make a point of trying to talk to them on the phone at least once a week. Because even though I can see them in a year and nothing really goes by, you've got to put some hours in, I think." 

For me, it would have been a deal breaker if my partner didn't show up at my father’s funeral, which is what happens in this film. What are deal breakers for you guys?

Michael B. Jordan: "But they just met. Is that really a deal breaker?"

Tom Gormican: "The guys are still rationalising that decision! So they clearly learned nothing about this whole thing. Michael’s still mad about it." [laughs] 

Michael B. Jordan: "I don’t know, oh man." 

Zac Efron: "It's a deal breaker for me. If I’ve known a person for that long and I’m still figuring out who they are and every sort of moment from then till now is authentic, there’s no such thing as a deal breaker. You don’t know what that person’s going through. I’m not a person that lives with deal breakers in my life. If the deal breaker was that they didn’t show up to a funeral, you’ve got your own issues." 

Miles Teller: "Sleep with Michael B. Jordan – that's my deal breaker! Yes, man, you're disgusting." 

Tom Gormican: "The crazy thing is Miles can no longer find someone to date." 

Miles Teller: "Everyone has slept with Michael B. Jordan."

Michael B. Jordan:  "Don’t listen to these guys, okay. I am not that guy." 

 Are you a deal breaker? 

Michael B. Jordan: "Ah man. I'm trying to figure out how I want you guys to judge me, after I answer this."[laughs]

Tom Gormican:  "You have to admit you have no deal breakers."

Michael B. Jordan:[laughs] "This is crazy to think about! I’m going to pass…"

 

That Awkward Moment is in cinemas now, rated 15. 

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