Ed Helms talks about acting ‘like an idiot’ in new movie Tag’

Updated June 10, 2018 - 1:08 pm

It’s almost impossible to believe that a Las Vegas hangover can last a decade, but such is life for actor Ed Helms.

In 2019, it will be 10 years since his hit comedy “The Hangover” was released. “I have so many incredible memories of Las Vegas, a city that will always live in my heart, plus I have a key to the city. Anything is still possible,” said Helms whose new summer comedy “Tag” opens Friday.

It’s about former childhood friends (Helms, Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner) who take a month off from adulting each year to play a revved-up game of the playground classic. Said Helms of the role, “I can’t believe it’s my job to run around and act like an idiot.”

Review-Journal: What is your ideal Sunday?

Ed Helms: A perfect Sunday for me must involve pancakes followed by maybe an hour or so at the driving range. The rest of the time I’m just hanging out with my family.

You star in a film called “Tag” about adults who stage a monthlong tag game each year. Is this based on a true story?

It’s hard to believe that adults do this, but it’s real. I think that’s the only reason to make this movie because it’s real. Otherwise, it feels too far-fetched and too ridiculous. These are adults who have families and regular jobs. But they take a month each year to play tag with their childhood friends.

Is the film really about putting down your phone and spending face time with old friends?

The secret of this movie is that it looks like a big, broad comedy about a bunch of guys chasing each other. Ultimately, it’s about friendship and finding a way to stay in each other’s lives for many decades. As an adult knows, it’s hard to maintain friendships and takes effort. These guys have found a way to bring each other together and do it in a ridiculous way.

What was it like to do all of this physical comedy with Jon Hamm?

It’s so much fun. I love working with Jon. He’s so playful and willing to try anything. He’s such a cool guy who loves to look silly. I think of this film as Andy Bernard from “The Office” vs. Don Draper.

Did you get hurt?

Just the regular aches and pains of being a 40-something guy running too much. But it worked because a big part of this movie is that these guys are too old for all this action, so we’re going to get beat up. Some of those chase sequences were intense.

Jeremy Renner broke his arms making this movie. And he’s an Avenger!

The incredible thing was he broke both arms and was back on the set four hours later and didn’t miss a scene. He’s this huge action star who has to do comedy to injure himself. It proves that action guys can’t always hang with the comedy guys.

Which cast member from “The Office” or “The Hangover” would win a real-life tag game?

John Krasinski would win from “The Office” cast. He’s incredibly athletic. If the cast of “The Hangover” played tag, I think Bradley Cooper would win. That sounds right because I might just stand there and I’m not sure what Zack would do.

The first “Hangover” turns 10 next year. What is your favorite memory of filming in Vegas?

I have so many incredible memories of filming the first “Hangover,” but my favorite is filming on the roof of Caesars Palace when we were shooting the scenes where we finally rescued Doug. All of the guys were up on the roof at golden hour. It was dusk. I remember standing there and looking out at the entire city of Las Vegas. The cool thing was no one is really allowed up there, but there we were shooting a movie. It felt very special on that particularly beautiful night. Between takes, the guys were up there just making each other laugh.

Does starring in “The Hangover” make you an honorary Vegas Golden Knights fan?

It must because the mayor of Las Vegas gave all of us “Hangover” guys a key to the city, so we can do anything including, of course, supporting the hockey team.

There is talk of an “Office” reboot. Will we see more of Andy Bernard?

It seems very hypothetical. What I am aware of is that kids, teens and young people are binging “The Office.” People who weren’t even born when the show started are watching the whole thing, which I think is awesome. I’m really touched by the fact that the show is still connecting.

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