Alan Ritchson is back playing football, and back making audiences laugh, in The Turkey Bowl. The Titans star gave Hidden Remote the scoop on his new film.
If you only know Alan Ritchson from Titans, you don’t know that he’s incredibly hilarious—and he makes a triumphant return to comedy in the new movie The Turkey Bowl.
Ritchson shines alongside Ryan Hansen (Veronica Mars) in the film, which focuses on a hometown football game left unfinished 15 years earlier. Both sides are determined to settle the score; even though everyone’s grown up, the crosstown rivalry has never died.
Learn more about The Turkey Bowl in our interview with Alan Ritchson below, then watch the film now on demand or in select movie theaters near you.
Hidden Remote: You’re well known for your breakout performance in another football comedy, playing Thad Castle in Blue Mountain State. How would you contrast The Turkey Bowl to that TV show?
Alan Ritchson: Any time football is sort of the backbone to a story, that plot device that brings people together, I think they’re going to liken it to BMS. But this is a totally different thing.
And it was interesting because at the screening at Lionsgate the other day, a guy comes up to me and goes man, I thought for sure it was going to be Thad all over again and I was looking forward to that and it was nothing like that. You were nothing like that and it wasn’t anything like it, and I think you guys did a really great job.
I was like oh man, it’s really refreshing to hear it’s a new take on a similar world. I think people are going to enjoy it. It feels a little like it’s from the same universe in a way, but it’s it’s own thing.
HR: What made you interested in The Turkey Bowl in the first place?
AR: The people behind it, Greg Coolidge and Kirk Ward, really understand my kind of comedy. And the script kind of held itself up. I saw enough of what I needed on the page to try to make it funny, entertaining for people, and to feel satisfied creatively. It was all there.
It was a fun, heartfelt movie with a lot of laughs and it’s original. I just always want to jump into a quality, original project and this was it. I had a lot of fun making it. Greg and Kirk, hats off to them, they really know how to write and craft a comedy.
HR: What do you think makes a good comedy like this or like Blue Mountain State?
AR: One thing that I’m not drawn to, and I see it a lot when I read scripts, [is] there’s a a cynicism to a lot of people’s comedy that I don’t like. It’s not that it’s not funny to other people, but to me it’s not funny. I don’t think there’s room for an overall cloud of pessimism or cynicism [or] condescension.
A lot of comics, their comedy comes from a dark place, sadly, where they’re using it to make sure other people don’t feel like them, or as a mask or whatever. Most comics I know have a rough path, an inner turmoil, and when the comedy is sort of fueled completely by that it’s kind of hard for me personally to get behind it.
I like to find comedy that kind of has an inner child about it, a magic to it, and that’s where we got with this in my opinion. I think a lot people have a hard time keeping it interesting but light.
HR: The crux of The Turkey Bowl is we have to believe these people grew up together and have held this grudge for 15 years. Was it easy to find chemistry with the rest of the cast?
AR: Yeah. Everybody had such a great attitude and just all did their parts to elevate this thing and make it funny and meaningful. There was no ego on set. Especially dramas, [sometimes] you walk on set and everybody’s taking themselves and the project too seriously. And there was none of that on this. We were just there to have a good time, and I think it shows. Even if we’re going head to head, Ryan and I are going at each other in a scene, it’s still fun.
HR: What have been some of Alan Ritchson’s other favorite projects?
AR: Blood Drive was such an original, new, weird concept to me that I was proud of being part of something that was so unique. [It] hadn’t really been done before and it was very overlooked. I get why, but I read those scripts and I was like there’s nothing like this and I don’t think anything’s ever been done like this, and that was the main reason why I wanted to do it. The thing that people talk about the most is Blue Mountain State, still to this day. It has such a cult following it’s hard to get away from.
HR: Did you have a favorite Turkey Bowl moment audiences should be looking for?
AR: My favorite scene personally to make, I hope others enjoy watching it, was the stalker bedroom scene. For me, that was a lot of fun…I think as far as Turkey Bowl goes, I just want people to get out there and enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it.
The Turkey Bowl is now available on-demand, digitally and in select movie theaters.