From romantic comedies like The Switch to sitcoms like Arrested Development to straight-up twisted crime dramas like Ozark, there is no genre that Jason Bateman cannot pull off. His skill and craft as an exemplary actor are not hidden from anybody. However, he has also proved his directing prowess. Apart from the many notable episodes of Ozark, Bateman has also directed a few films like The Family Fang, Significant Other, and more.
His debut as a filmmaker was the 2014 dark comedy Bad Words. Shortly after the release of the film, Bateman opened up about the difficulties he faced and overcame with that movie, especially while directing and acting opposite a 10-year-old actor.
How did Jason Bateman handle filming of R-rated content on Bad Words with a child actor?
While one’s first film comes with its own set of challenges, Bad Words‘ premise was also risque and definitely not easy to tackle. To top it all, the movie also starred a barely ten-year-old child actor, Rohan Chand. In a 2014 interview with BuzzFeed, Jason Bateman disclosed his process of dealing with and working his way around the profane scenes. Apart from making the young actor comfortable on the set, the Ozark star also had to make sure that his parents were on board with each and every scene.
Bateman tried his best to explain the context and delivery of each interaction. He even tried to assure them that “it was all coming from dramatic places or character places.” It was not just for shock value.
“We were certainly sensitive to the provocative fabric of that scene and made sure that they were very, very comfortable,” illustrated the Arrested Development actor.
Apart from the parents, they even had a social worker and a studio teacher on set at all times for guidance. If a scene got too heavy, they would even take the young actor away from the set, shoot the explicit matter and bring him back.
The film followed a foul and loose-lipped skeptic named Guy Trilby (Jason Bateman) who took could never clear the eighth grade. Using that to his advantage, and finding a loophole in the bylaws, he enters a National Spelling Bee. It is then that he meets Chaitanya Chopra (Rohan Chand) and takes him along for his often R-rated misadventures.
What did you think of Jason Bateman’s directorial Debut? Let us know in the comments. You can watch Bad Words, streaming on Netflix.