John Hamburg is a very funny guy. Hamburg wrote and directed the crime comedy Safe Men, which played at Sundance and spawned a devoted cult following. A sure-thing comedy closer, the New York City native built hilarious set pieces and character work into Meet the Parents, Zoolander, and Meet the Fockers, which not only helped lift them to huge box office but also pushed a few new catchphrases into the American lexicon. A veteran of the uncredited production rewrite, Hamburg also wrote and directed the romantic comedy Along Came Polly in 2004. In this amusing interview, Hamburg discusses how he developed his talent for writing actor-hooking dialogue in the humorous monologues he performed in college, why he'd do a thousand test screenings if he could, and what it's like to hand a new scene to Robert De Niro and stand there waiting to see if he likes it.
Your Host: Producer Mike De Luca is responsible for some of the most groundbreaking films of the last 15 years. After enrolling in New York University's film studies program at 17, De Luca dropped out four credits shy of graduation to take an unpaid internship at New Line Cinema. He advanced quickly there under the tutelage of founder Robert Shaye and eventually became president of production. The Mask (1994), Se7en (1995), Boogie Nights (1997), Dark City (1998), Pleasantville (1998), and Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999) were all released under his supervision. In 2003, De Luca left New Line to become president of production at DreamWorks. After a brief tenure there, he left and signed a deal with Sony Pictures, where he produced Zathura (2005) and Ghost Rider (2006). A writer as well, De Luca wrote the screenplays for Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991) and In the Mouth of Madness (1994).
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