Iain Morris is the co-creator of The Inbetweeners series. He speaks to Stuart Macadam about the The Inbetweeners 2 film, his background and British humour.
Did you use a lot of your history back in high school and college days as inspiration for the movie?
Yeah I did I use a lot of it. Both Damon and I (who I wrote the film with) use a lot of the experiences that happened to our friends and us over the years. We just kind of throw it all in and see what comes out really. Sometimes it’s a bit like Déjà Vu for me. You’re like “that happened to me for sure.”
For those that haven’t seen it tell us what The Inbetweeners 2 is about.
It’s about four British lads who are on a gap year-even though it’s not a year-in Australia. One of them is spending a year out there and the three other friends go out to visit them. And they basically chase girls and try and get drunk, pretty much like a lot of British backpackers.
Tell us a bit more about your background in film and television.
I worked as a producer for years. Then Damon and I started writing together about ten years ago. Then I was a script editor on a show called Peep Show. Then we wrote a couple episodes of Flight of the Concords and then we have been doing The Inbetweeners pretty much solidly ever since.
Is it hard to bring comedy to screen or is it something which comes quite naturally to you?
It’s something we’ve always done. I’ve ben obsessed with TV comedies since I was about 12. It’s not easy, but it feels like the only thing I could do for my living at the moment.
Would you find it difficult to just tell a joke to someone on the spot?
Impossible. Absolutely impossible; yeah I can’t do it. I’m disastrously bad at telling jokes. Really, really bad at it.
Where did filming for the movie take place?
We shot a lot at the Gold Coast in Australia. We shot a bit in Sydney. We shot for a week in Marree, which is sort of I guess deep Outback.
Tell us a bit about the actors in the film.
The four actors, we cast them about seven years ago now; and they were very young when we cast them-they aren’t so young now- and they are four extraordinary men who are absolutely amazing at constantly taking the mickey out of me and Damon and out of each other. So it’s a bit like being in school. If you are not giving it you are going to be taking it. You’re quick witted enough to get out the way. But they are great friends and I’ve been very lucky to work with them really.
A lot of the characters are very reminiscent of real life people. Did the characters get based on people you and the actors know?
Yeah. Me and Damon, right from the get go have always tried to make the show and the films as relatable as possible. So you always wanted characters you felt like you knew in real life. I guess people talk about being cringe humour at times. And the idea I guess is you know those people and you say “Don’t say that, don’t do that.” Me and Damon are terribly socially awkward and we’ve lives through a lot of that stuff and I guess where that comes from.
What are some of your favourite books?
Books. Well one of my favourite books is Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace which I love, it’s an amazing novel. Corrections by Jonathon Frazen as well. I try to read a book a week.
Why do people enjoy British humour so much?
I think because we’re…it’s about failure and people reaching too high and then failing. I think it’s nice to see other people failing fundamentally. So British humour does that a lot. A lot of big characters like Partridge or Basil Fawlty are trying to reach for something and get above themselves and then fail.