Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell switch talk show appearances in hilarious publicity stunt
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Sometimes creatives augment media coverage by throwing a PR stunt that gets lots of eyeballs on the project.
Of course, it can either work or backfire.
For the 2005 movie “House of Wax” producer Joel Silver took things a tad too far when he advertised Paris Hilton’s death in the slasher flick. He exploited her star clout by selling “See Paris Die May 6” shirts. The movie bombed, though.
In 2006, Sacha Baron Cohen, synonymous for his mockumentary feature, “Borat”, tried to enter the White House, dressed as a fictional Kazakh journalist character.
He was apprehended by the Secret Service. And his shenanigans didn’t go down well with the Kazakh government, who didn’t find his representation of the country funny in the least, either.
That said, the movie did well, despite the feathers it ruffled.
More recently, Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell had fans in stitches, when they filled in for the other on different talk shows.
First, Reynolds, who is currently in the Netflix action-thriller “Red Notice”, strolled onto the set of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”, as the audience clapped for Will Ferrell in anticipation of him walking in to talk about his Apple TV+ dark comedy, “The Shrink Next Door”.
But it was Ryan who strolled onto the studio floor and the audience went gaga and gave him a standing ovation.
Once seated, he said: “So weird, I just put the kids to bed. I was walking the dog around the block. Will called, said he was running a little late, asked me if I would jump in and I said, ‘Anything for you, Will’.”
When Jimmy asked how late Will was going to be, Ryan said: “He’s gonna be here in about a half past never. Will is not coming at all.”
He stole the show with his playful jibs at Will: “I’m just as disgusted as you are with these plastic playboy Hollywood primadonnas that think they can just have a talk show appearance and just not show up. Will Ferrell, too, he loves late-night talk shows.
“He is a late-night talk show slut yet he doesn’t even ... who blows this off?”
And the banter continued when he refused to talk about “Red Notice” and told Jimmy if he pushes it, he will “taste the back of his hand”.
When Jimmy showed him Paul Rudd, who was recently made the cover of People magazine as the “Sexiest Man Alive”, he quipped that Paul is “ageing backwards because of his contract with Satan or he only drinks breast milk from a blue whale or something weird and I want in”.
He winged the premise, too, which was a riot.
Meanwhile, Will turned up at Ryan’s interview on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
A “surprised” Jimmy wanted to know what happened to Ryan and Will said: “Yeah, Ryan couldn’t make it. I got a text from him saying he was running late, which usually means he’s not going to show up. And he asked if I could fill in … ”
Then he tried to pull a watch trick on Jimmy before mentioned that he was excited about “Red Notice”.
When asked if he saw it, he replied: “I haven’t seen a stitch of it. You got Ryan Reynolds, you got Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Gal Gadot ... hubba, hubba.”
But he says he saw the billboards so it’s going to be classy.
“I think it is going to be good,” he said.
He also did an hilariously hamfisted job of guessing the premise.
In both interviews, the trailers of their respective new offerings were played.
As far as PR stunts go, this one was not only hilarious, it was effective – and memorable.