Tag Director Interview

The story behind the new film Tag is so simple and ridiculous, there’s no way it could be real, which of course it is. Based on a Wall Street Journal article about 10 men who have been friends since they were kids, the film concerns a game of tag that has been going on for decades among these folks (streamlined to five players for the movie, played by Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, Ed Helms, Hannibal Buress and Jake Johnson), who dedicate a single month per year to actively playing. Naturally, the game has also kept these lifelong pals close for a lot longer than most friendships survive, and it’s that emotional core that makes Tag something more than just a silly action comedy.

With a cast this strong (also including Isla Fisher, Rashida Jones, Leslie Bibb and Annabelle Wallis), it’s surprising that the film comes from a first-time feature director, Jeff Tomsic, who comes to the project with many years’ experience producing and directing an array of stand-up specials and comedy series, such as Broad City, This Is Not Happening, and Idiotsitter.

/Film spoke recently with Tomsic about Tag (which is in theaters now) in Chicago, covering how he pulled together such an impressive cast, Renner’s well-reported accident that left him with two broken arms, which insane tagging scenarios in the film were based on real incidents, and how he kept the very silly story rooted in the friendship.

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