Podcast: Screenwriter Annie Mumolo Talks BRIDESMAIDS

Screenwriter Annie Mumolo with actor and co-screenwriter Kristen Wiig on the set of Bridesmaids.

Screenwriter Annie Mumolo with actor and co-screenwriter Kristen Wiig on the set of Bridesmaids.

“We wrote the script in six days,” says screenwriter Annie Mumolo of the whirlwind experience she had writing the new Judd Apatow-produced comedy Bridesmaids. The film is about a group of ladies who come together when one of them gets married. Mumolo co-wrote the script with friend and star of the film, Kristen Wiig (Saturday Night Live, Knocked Up, MacGruber). “We are trained to write very quickly, at high volume,” Mumolo explains. She and Wiig hooked up through The Groundlings, an improv comedy troupe in Los Angeles where trial and error seem to produce the best results.

Sometimes, writing a first draft can be that simple. That doesn’t mean Mumolo and Wiig didn’t have to rewrite. They did, a bajillion times, Mumolo says. But when you’re working with Judd Apatow, and he says, “Make a change,” you pretty much, “Make a change.” Unless, you’ve got to stand your ground, Mumolo says, which she and Wiig weren’t afraid to do.

While Apatow fought for what he believed in and they fought for what they believed in, a solid plot with realistic characters, a little bit of raunch and a whole lot of laughs quickly emerged. Soon, the Bridesmaids script was the hottest thing in town. Script sat down with Mumolo to discuss what it was like to collaborate with a couple of the funniest people in Hollywood on the most anticipated romantic comedy of the season.

Podcast highlights include:
* Mumolo talking about how Bridesmaids was her first script.
* Her experience being overwhelmed with rewrite notes.
* Finding the funny on the set, SNL style.

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21 thoughts on “Podcast: Screenwriter Annie Mumolo Talks BRIDESMAIDS

  1. Pingback: Filmmaking Quote #31 (Annie Mumolo) « Screenwriting from Iowa

  2. Pingback: Listen to the pros: Bridesmaids screenwriter Annie Mumolo gives secret to female comedy success « jennamilly

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  4. stogie kenyatta

    Really enjoyable interview, liked her perspective of Character POV before Story. It was interesting, curious to know how much of the 6 day 1st Draft remained in the shooting script. Because many times Writers say they wrote a Script in 6 days but fail to mention the next 6 months they spent doing rewrites of the that 6 day first draft. She’s very down to earth & Jenna did a good job, thanks for posting.

    Stogie Kenyatta

  5. Ron McGraw

    An interesting interview, especially when Annie talks about her protagonist. In my own experience, if you have a strong character (which I’ll explain in a moment) all sorts of things develop as a result, whether plot-driven or character-driven and your ears/mind has to be receptive to them in the writing/rewriting process.
    By strong character, I don’t mean brawn and muscles; I’m referring to the character herself. If you have her clearly drawn in your mind as if she’s a real person who will react to any situation you put her into, then you have a strong character. Any time you have several strong characters, it follows that all kinds of plot twists will take place if you have a workable plot.
    I’m a novelist who hopes to shortly get into screenwriting and what I’ve said above surely applies to both fields of writing endeavor.
    Good interview, Jenna. Keep them up.

  6. Chi Dog

    Solid plot? There was no plot! With realistic characters? No, the characters were not realistic at all. Maybe more time should have been spent on the script, but hey, why bother? The movie is gonna make kzillions even with a lame 6-day screenplay. No need to work on the craft of screenwriting or storytelling.

  7. Pingback: Bridesmaids Screenwriter Talks

  8. Rozalyn Mattocks

    Quite an inspiring interview, already wanted to see it but now I can’t wait. Love the girl factor, comedy is one of my favorite genres but also one that scares me as a writer. The sections on dialogue and notes gave me a lot to think about, fires me up to get writing!

  9. David

    Really nice work, Jenna. Your interview style always guides the interviewee without being overbearing, and walks us through all of the questions aspiring professional writers are likely to ask. I always feel like I come away with something useful or surprising.

  10. Kathy Cabrera

    Glad to know there’s someone else out there who can write a quality script in 6 days. Maybe there’s hope for some of the screenplays I created in a 3 day weekend turnaround. Now I just need to find a buyer… Seriously though I am psyched to see this movie because of teh interesting facts and insights gleaned in this piece.

  11. John Rossi

    Jenna,

    Great interview – drawing Annie Mumolo out on really important aspects of the process going back to 2006.

    The insight into character builds story v. story builds character process was enlightening.

    Also Annie’s discussion of the character’s point-of-view helping to more easily develop dialogue was also helpful.

    Finally, the process of “notes” and managing them was also a key issue, particularly in relation to studios and producers processes.

    “Don’t wait… make your own stuff. Preparation meets opportunity.” Annie Mumolo

    Thanks, looking forward to seeing the result.

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