AP NEWS

David Mitchell enjoys freedom to improvise on Steve Coogan comedy

May 6, 2019

David Mitchell has enjoyed the freedom to improvise with Steve Coogan on set for their new movie.

The two British stars are set to appear together in an as-yet-unnamed comedy satire focused on a retail tycoon (Coogan) and a writer (Mitchell) “paid to write a very complimentary biography about him”, and the former ‘Peep Show’ actor has found it almost liberating to have more time to work around the script after filming it word-for-word before doing “other stuff” around it.

Speaking on the ‘Adam Buxton Podcast’, he said: “Oddly, I have had a bit of fun with it. My expectation was very much that it’d be, ‘Well, I’m happy with the line’. But it’s not felt like we’ve compromised the line.

“The line’s there, but then we can do other stuff as well that might be useful. So I’ve been more comfortable with that. Certainly in my experiences with TV they’re always under the pressure of time when you’re filming, and so I’m quite a believer in thinking about what’s going to be said in a different room where there isn’t a crew waiting.

“But when you’ve got a little bit more time and you’re not worried about dropping a scene if you don’t move on, then it turns out I can enjoy that and bit a little bit less arsey.”

The project - which has almost finished filming - has been directed by Michael Winterbottom, who previously worked with Alan Partridge star Coogan and Rob Brydon on ‘The Trip’.

Mitchell added: “I think he has a slightly... it’s not a spoof documentary but it has a slightly documentary-ish feel to it. There’s not like a video village where the director and costume people are looking at the monitors.

“It’s like, Michael’s there behind the camera deciding what the shots should be then and there. It’s quite informal in that way. And I think therefore quite quick.”