Saturday Night Live’s latest transplant to the big screen comes clean about his cinematic masturbation techniques, dating Scarlett Johansson and January Jones (but not Betty White), and how he ended up marrying Justin Timberlake, kissing Jon Hamm and sucking Zac Efron’s toes
PLAYBOY: Your new movie, Horrible Bosses, is about three friends who conspire to kill their employers. Can you recommend a way to deal with an oppressive boss that doesn’t involve murder?
SUDEIKIS: Honestly, no. That’s probably the best way to go. No, no, I’m kidding; that’s a terrible idea. I would recommend quitting your job before murdering anyone. Or voice your frustrations and see if some adjustments can be made. Murdering your boss should be step four at the earliest.
PLAYBOY: What about you personally? Are you capable of killing another human being?SUDEIKIS: Probably not, though I find myself having flashes of anger at perfect strangers, like when somebody talks too loudly in front of me at a concert. I’ve worked with a couple of producers I wouldn’t mind pushing down a flight of stairs or taking a swing at old-school Bill Murray style. I get as pissed as anybody does. But murder? No, I couldn’t go that far. I’m going to answer these questions honestly, for fear of having them in print. If I ever accidentally nudge someone off a bridge, I don’t want a lawyer saying, “Look, he said right here in this interview that he’d commit murder.”
PLAYBOY: Colin Farrell, who plays your horrible boss in Horrible Bosses, has a ridiculous comb-over in the movie. Did you make a similar physical transformation for your role?SUDEIKIS: I have a tan—that’s weird for me. That was the extent of my character work. The film takes place in L.A., and people are a lot healthier there. Here’s a guy who goes hiking every now and then with a lady friend, and the sun hits his face. You know how sun works, right? Probably the hardest part of doing this movie was matching my skin tone when I came back to do reshoots, because I’d been living in New York in the middle of winter and my complexion was like typing paper. They had to put a ton of makeup on me to give the impression of healthy skin. There’s a specific brand of makeup they used that I think is literally called Healthy Glow.
PLAYBOY: You also have a small part in the upcoming sketch-comedy film Movie 43, playing Batman. How does your Batman compare with the Batman of other actors who’ve played the role, such as George Clooney and Michael Keaton?
SUDEIKIS: My Batman was a little bit less handsome than Clooney’s, a little bit louder than Michael Keaton’s and probably the closest to Val Kilmer’s Batman as anybody’s seen in years. But it was a ridiculous amount of fun to do. Our scene is about Batman cock-blocking Robin, played by Justin Long, at a speed-dating thing. It’s the closest to me screwing around after a pitcher of beer on an empty stomach as anything I’ve ever done in a movie.
PLAYBOY: In the Farrelly Brothers comedy Hall Pass, you have a memorable scene in which you masturbate in a car while listening to Air Supply. How do you think it compares with the classics of movie masturbation, like Fast Times at Ridgemont High and There’s Something About Mary?
SUDEIKIS: One key difference is that I was really doing it. That wasn’t a part of the script; it was just something I was doing during a break in shooting. They were doing a lighting setup and they caught me. We’re actually in litigation for that whole scene.
PLAYBOY: Were you inspired by all the masturbators who’ve gone before you?
SUDEIKIS: Here’s a little movie-magic fun fact for you. I did all my research for that scene by going on Chatroulette, that website where guys masturbate for strangers. My moves in Hall Pass are an amalgamation of, I don’t know, maybe 20,000 different dudes. I took the facial expressions from SexHog22; I took the hand motions from GrizzlyBearDong. Those guys really know what they’re doing.
PLAYBOY: Hall Pass also introduced us to the phrase spank bank, a mental inventory of fantasy images. What’s in your spank bank?
SUDEIKIS: My mom got my dad a Playboy subscription as a wedding gift way back in 1969, so I grew up in a house where Playboy was readily available. I have a strong face and name recognition for Playmates between the late 1980s and early 1990s, and a lot of those images are still floating around up there in my head. If you showed me 100 faces of pretty naked ladies from that period, I could point out which 12 of them were actual Playmates. I could name nine of them at least. I could pick Wendy Hamilton, Miss December 1991, out of a lineup. But then again, I could also do this for Big Eight basketball players from the same time frame, so it’s not completely directed at masturbating.
PLAYBOY: You’ve played Floyd, one of Liz Lemon’s many boyfriends on 30 Rock. Explain why you make better boyfriend material than Jon Hamm or Matt Damon.
SUDEIKIS: God, I can’t. I would make the exact opposite argument, that I don’t in any way make a better boyfriend. I mean, come on, we all just want her and Jack Donaghy [played by Alec Baldwin], to get together, right? When I first got the job on 30 Rock, it wasn’t a huge show yet. It was just a fun thing to do, and it was before the show started winning all those awards. When it started to get successful, I said, “It’s a good thing I got the part when I did. If they were casting the show now, they’d probably get Matt Damon to play her boyfriend.” And lo and behold, not long after that, Matt Damon comes on the show and plays her boyfriend. So if this acting thing doesn’t work out I’ll always have a career as a casting director to fall back on.
PLAYBOY: You got married to this month’s interview subject, Justin Timberlake, on the animated sitcom The Cleveland Show. How’s that relationship working out?
SUDEIKIS: Well, I’ll be honest. With Justin and me, he’s been an absent lover. He’s busy being the best at everything. If it’s not singing and dancing, it’s golfing and being in a shit ton of movies. I can’t wait to vote for him for president when he turns 35. But on a personal level, it’s not working out between us. I never see the guy. We’re never in the same town. Hopefully we can have a heart-to-heart. It’s something we have to air out before it’s picked up by the media.
PLAYBOY: That’s something you have some experience with. You’ve been romantically linked with actresses Jennifer Aniston, January Jones and Scarlett Johansson. Would it be easier to ask which Hollywood actresses you haven’t slept with?
SUDEIKIS: I think I missed my opportunity with Betty White. She got too big too soon on the second go-around. There was a whole chunk of time between Golden Girls and that Snickers commercial when I could’ve made something happen. Now I can’t get near her.
PLAYBOY: Is it more difficult to date because of the prying eyes of the tabloids?
SUDEIKIS: No, I don’t think so. I think it has less to do with me than with the ladies. Tabloids in general are more about the ladies than the fellas. There are exceptions, like Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise, but of the nine or so people who are usually on the covers of those magazines, seven of them are women. I haven’t seen a picture of me standing next to anyone who doesn’t have an IMDB page. It doesn’t matter to me if someone is in movies or on TV or not. Nice people are nice people. Pretty people are pretty people.
PLAYBOY: While you were dating January Jones last summer, you went on George Lopez’s talk show and joked that you’d seen her naked, which she later denied, adding, “Nor will he after those comments.” In hindsight, do you have any regrets?
SUDEIKIS: The bummer of that whole situation is she made a joke right back at me and nobody got it. Nobody gave her credit for what I thought was a pretty good zinger. I was like, “Come on, now. Let the gal have some fun.”
PLAYBOY: You come from a large Lithuanian family. Although you have only two sisters, you have 25 cousins. Is there a condom shortage in the family?
SUDEIKIS: That’s actually on the Wendt side, my mother’s side. They just love to hump, I guess. I don’t know the exact number now, but I think some of the cousins are having kids. One of them has four kids, which is crazy to me. On the Sudeikis side it may be down to just my father. I guess I’m the last one who can carry on the Sudeikis name. But I don’t know if I have anything left in the tank. I wasted so much of it in the early 1990s on those Playboys, my tank might be empty. Do you guys provide a doctor so I can answer this accurately?
PLAYBOY: Your uncle is George Wendt, who famously played Norm on the classic sitcom Cheers. Has he given you any career advice?
SUDEIKIS: He’s always been very encouraging, but there was no Tuesdays With Morrie kind of relationship between us. He didn’t take me to the park to explain comic timing. “Watch these dogs play, kid. See how playful they are. That’s what you need to bring to your work.” There was nothing like that. He was just a good example that being an actor was a viable option. The advice he gave me, and I say this jokingly, was “Get on one of the best sitcoms of all time and then ride it out.”
PLAYBOY: You’re a big University of Kansas basketball fan. Are you just a spectator, or can you play some hoops?
SUDEIKIS: I played in high school and then at community college for a year and a half. Knowing what I know about myself, it was a form of acting. I was always showboating. I threw a lot of behind-the-back and no-look passes, like Magic Johnson or Pete Maravich. Those are the guys I really enjoyed watching, who had such flashy ways of playing. I was the goofy white kid on a team full of black guys. I was very much like Jim Carrey on In Living Color.
PLAYBOY: As a small-town boy from Overland Park, Kansas, did you have culture shock when you moved to New York City?
SUDEIKIS: It could’ve been worse. I got to live in Chicago, Amsterdam and Las Vegas before I got to New York. And it’s not as if I grew up on a farm. It was a suburb of Kansas City. But New York is definitely an adjustment. It helps to have a built-in social group before you arrive. And a job, obviously—this place is expensive as shit.
PLAYBOY: You’ve worked on Saturday Night Live for the past eight years, so you’re familiar with the building. Is 30 Rockefeller Center filled with secret chutes and hidden doors?
SUDEIKIS: Oh yeah, there’s stuff everywhere. On the eighth floor there’s a chute made entirely of brick, almost like an elevator shaft that doesn’t have an elevator. You can look straight up and see the sky. People used to go out there and smoke all the time. Now alarms go off. There’s a sign that says WATCH YOUR HEAD over stage left of the studio, and somebody wrote “Farley” on the bottom of it because I guess Chris Farley used to always hit his head when he ran off stage for a quick change. There are little secrets everywhere if you know where to look for them.
PLAYBOY: The postshow parties at Saturday Night Live are notorious for being outrageous drug-fueled affairs. Are they as wild in 2011 as they were back in John Belushi and Bill Murray’s day?
SUDEIKIS: It’s not that juvenile anymore. These days it goes much deeper. It’s more about white-collar crime. There’s definitely some money laundering going on at those parties, and some identity theft. It comes from a very different place now. It’s all about the benjamins. But we do know how to party. There’s a lot of dancing, a lot of people doing the macarena and singing “Mambo No. 5,” people drinking Zima and screwing around. It’s the best party in town. [bursts into laughter]
PLAYBOY: On SNL you’ve kissed Jon Hamm and put Zac Efron’s foot in your mouth. Which was a more pleasant experience?
SUDEIKIS: Well, they’re both equally hairy. At this point it’s up to them to decide. I don’t want to choose favorites. But I will say that Efron’s foot was a delight. All those Disney kids have real clean feet. I’m not a dummy. I’m going to put only a real clean foot in my mouth. And I’ll tell you what, it tasted a lot like Ben Kingsley’s foot.
PLAYBOY: You do a hilarious impression of Vice President Joe Biden. Have you ever gotten a reaction from the real Biden?
SUDEIKIS: I’ve never met him, but I did get to watch a video of him watching me do him, which was surreal. He was laughing, so I guess he liked it. My father got to meet him when he was campaigning back in 2008. In fact, he introduced himself as “the father of the guy who plays you on SNL.” He actually had a pretty funny joke. He said to Biden, “I have to tell you, sir, you do the best impression of my son I’ve ever seen.”