Exclusive

Will Ferrell and director Adam McKay have made some of the biggest comedy hits of the last decade, but their working relationship transcends the silver screen. After meeting on Saturday Night Live, the duo achieved an instant connection that would spawn movies such as Talladega Nights, The Other Guys and Step Brothers.

Their biggest hit together was Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, a movie that made modest returns on its initial release but gained a monstrous afterlife through word of mouth and DVD sales. The long anticipated sequel is Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues and it brings back all of the pieces of the original that made it successful in the first place.

Director Adam McKay recently came to San Francisco to promote the film and talk about making a new story with familiar characters. He’s happy to have waited to make the sequel and not rush anything, making the film stronger as a result. The following is a transcription of that conversation.

Q: How did you and Will Ferrell approach making the sequel?

The reason we didn’t do it for so long was that we were just like, “Why do a sequel?” They usually feel kind of perfunctory, or like a cash-grab. But then people kept asking us, “What about ANCHORMAN 2?” It suddenly became intriguing. We looked at what makes sequels work and what doesn’t. The ones that work continue the story and the ones that don’t just repeat it. The key at that point was, “Is there another chapter to this?”

We spent an afternoon kicking around ideas when we realized, “Oh my god — 24-hour news started in 1980…″ and that’s not that far from when the first one took place. That’s even bigger than “the first female [news] anchor.” Once we had that, we knew we had a movie. That is a different story to tell and it does put them through different paces.

Q: Your brand of humor is so tangential and wild, exploring corners of comedy that very few other films have the balls to approach. With this movie, was it difficult to one-up yourself and go to places that were even more absurd and hyperbolic?

I think, fortunately or unfortunately, that we could do that all day long. If you gave us 300 days to shoot, we could give you 300 days of tangential comedy. That’s never a problem. If you give us the straightest script in the world… if you gave us TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY, we could fill it with comedy. Our background is improv. Ferrell [came out of the] Groundlings and I come out of Second City. The key is [having] a good story with enough emotional beats you can hit, and that engine is working and holding it up enough. We just want [a story] that holds it up enough. Once we knew we had that story of them coming to New York and all this change, we could do the comedy forever.

Q: It’s also because of the cast.

Yeah. The fact that you have four go-to point of views for comedy, you can always, in any scene, throw it over to Rudd, throw it over to Carell, Ferrell can become the straight man, or he becomes the guy doing the messed up thing and Rudd’s the straight man. It’s never-ending with that sized cast.

Q: You said you were kicking around several ideas for ANCHORMAN 2 before you decided on one. Could you share any of the ideas you discarded with us?

Keep in mind–the other ones were bad ideas! One was an “Irwin Allen” idea. I think it was still about 24-hour news, but the guy who owned 24-hour news built an underwater hotel, and the news story was that the glass they were using was faulty and Burgundy covered up the story because he didn’t want to lose his job. The end of the [film] was this crazy, 1970′s, Irwin Allen, underwater thing with the glass cracking, water flooding the room, those bad TOWERING INFERNO shots. We actually wrote and ending with that, but we could see it getting a bit boring.

Another one was as dumb as this–they go to space, somehow. Ferrell was like, “I don’t know what this is, but somehow we’re in space.” You could justify it! You go to the space shuttle; you could have it be that this is the first reporter to go up. I was wary of those action-y third-act endings, where it’s like, you’re in a comedy, so you’re doing action, but not quite as well. It can get a little boring. Ultimately, we stuck with the characters and made it about [Ron], his wife, his son, the news, and staying in that pocket.

Q: You still have an explosive climax in the movie, though.

We do. You’re talking about the gang fight?

Q: Yes.

We kind of knew that somehow it’s crazy, since in the first movie, [the fight] is operating within the logic of that movie. Somehow, as crazy as it is, it became somewhat of a conservative ending. We weren’t going to do it at first. We said, let’s not repeat anything from the first movie. We were going to be really strict about it, but we said, “We’ve got to do another gang fight!” It would be too much fun, and now that we know how to make movies a bit better, we could do stuff we didn’t do the first time.

anchorman-2-paul-rudd

Q: How easy or difficult was it to secure some of the cameos for the climactic fight?

It was pretty crazy. We drew up a wish list of all the people we wanted, and what we ended up with was basically our wish list. It’s never happened before. Usually, when you do your dream casting, you get 30%, 40%, only one of the people. In this case, they all said yes and it was insane. When they all said yes, I thought, “Should we try crazier ones?” So we actually tried Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton was an immediate, decisive “no.” Oprah’s person was like, “You never know!” There was an hour where we thought, “She might do this!” But then [her reps said] no.

The Barack Obama one was crazy. We had a semi-connection in the White House, and the connection was like, “He might do this! If he gets to say something with a point of view…” The joke was going to be that he was from C-SPAN. He was going to say that C-SPAN was going to change the news, because it was going to be stripped-down, and you’d see the truth. “Someday, everyone’s going to be watching C-SPAN.” Of course, I’m sure someone underneath him was like, “Are you f—king crazy? He’s the President!”

Q: How did you and Will Ferrell develop your particular brand of humor?

It’s always been what I’ve liked, going back to the Fawlty Towers episode when the German comes in with a head injury. I remember laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes. Or in AIRPLANE, there’s a spinning headline that says, “Boy Trapped in Refrigerator, Eats Own Foot.” A lot of comedy writers have pointed to that joke as a seminal joke. It’s those moments when all order goes away and chaos [takes over]. To me, as a kid, there was nothing more exciting than watching a movie and realizing, “Oh my god, anything can happen!”

The first time Will and I ever collaborated was our first year on SNL, a sketch called “Wake Up and Smile,” which was about what happens when the teleprompter breaks [during a newscast]. It basically becomes LORD OF THE FLIES since they’re not being told what to say. They all revert to their animal selves. It ends with Ferrell ripping the head off of David Allen Grier, with lots of blood, and they form a cult like “The Order of the Hand.” They just regress immediately. The first sketch he and I ever wrote was called “Neil Diamond: Storytellers.” That was another one where we just got f—king insane. The joke was [that Neil Diamond was telling all the stories behind his songs, and he] has all these harmless pop songs, but the stories are just horrible. “When I killed a drifter to get a hard-on.” They just get more and more out of control, and we realized, “We both like this!”

Q: You have all this footage of these funny guys saying and doing funny things – so much footage that you have enough for a second edit – which you’re going to release. How much fun is it in that editing room and is the second edit done?

It’s done. I just went in and gave all the last notes on it. It’s crazy. It’s 350 new jokes. I think there’s, like, seven jokes we couldn’t replace that were spoken jokes. Otherwise, every single joke [has been] replaced. It’s about 10-15 minutes longer… whole new runs and riffs. I can’t imagine doing a comedy any other way. When we’re in that editing room, the worst feeling is when you’re painted into a corner by a crappy joke. “Shit! We have nowhere else to go!” With every movie I do, I hate that feeling more and more, so I just make sure to have alternate takes no matter what we’re doing. It’s the greatest. I’ll go to the editor and say, “There’s got to be a better joke than that.”

A lot of times I’ll remember [something we did on the day] and he’ll go and dig it out. One of the other editors will cut four versions of the scene, I’ll go “That one!” and we’ll test screen it. The sheer volume of improv on this one, because there are so many actors, we were doing two screenings at the same time most of the time. We’d run another cut in a different theater and I’d get to see every joke. You record the laugh track and you go, “Holy shit, that worked!” We were finding new jokes up until we locked. We screened the alternate version before we had locked picture on the regular release and I found four new jokes in the alternate version that went into the regular movie. By the way, I could still be doing it now. It never ends. It’s a blast.

Q: Were there any discarded plot lines?

No, amazingly. There are a lot of plotlines, too. I was joking with [Judd] Apatow that it’s like we’re 11-years-old and into minotaurs and tridents, that’s what [this movie’s] like. There are five storylines [running] through [the sequel]. There’s the love story with Meagan Good, there’s the broken marriage, there’s the relationship with the son, Tamland has a love affair going, there’s the news and the synergy thing…there’s a lot. I thought for sure one or two of them would be cut, but they all seemed to play.

In this case, it was just the alt jokes, the sheer tonnage of improv. It’s very funny when you tell the studio, in the first [movie’s] case, “We have a second movie.” They can’t comprehend it. I told them, and they were like, “Haha! Must feel like that, right?” I told them that we had a second movie and that we’d already cut it and it just didn’t compute. Later, when the movie kind of hit, they were like, “What did you mean about that second movie?” They didn’t even do anything with it the first time. It was the same thing in this case. I kept telling them we had a second movie with all new jokes. This time, they believed us a little more and they’ve already scheduled it to be released.

anchorman-2-steve-carell-kristen-wiig

Q: What made you decide to give Brick a love interest? Why him?

I think the answer is almost in the question. Just say, “Brick has a love story.” Will and I sit down and just spray out possibilities. We write this 25-page document of what we’d want to see in the movie that makes no sense with the story at all, these dream moments. I don’t remember which one of us said, “Brick’s got to fall in love.” It wasn’t calculated at all. It just came out of what we wanted to see in the movie. I think it’s a little bit inspired by the first movie’s ending where it says he’s married with 11 kids.

Q: Are there any jokes that you went with even though they maybe didn’t quite work with test audiences?

That’s an interesting question. That’s the fun of it–there’s artistry to that. You’re not a slave to those test audiences. We put jokes in even though they don’t work just because we think they’re funny. But you need the audience to go on the ride with you. You can’t just isolate them. It’s this give and take you’re constantly playing with. There’s the line between Brick [and his romantic interest] Chani (Kristen Wiig) where she says, “I’m trained and certified…” (and then Brick finishes the sentence) “…to fire a military-grade missile launcher.” It never got a peep out of the audiences, but at one point I was like, too f—king bad, it’s going in the movie. Sometimes, there’ll be a joke that I don’t necessarily love, but then it kills, and you’re like, “What? Why is it killing?” If they love it that much, it’s like, all right, they can have that one. That process is just so much fun. You’re taking the audience on a ride, but messing with them a little bit.

They do test scores [with the test audiences] where they combine the “Excellents” and the “Very Goods” and you get a number out of it. You hear about movies that get a “98″ or “100.″ We don’t want that. For this one, I said the highest we should ever get is a “90″–I still want 10% of that crowd not liking the movie. That was the highest we got. There still should be some people walking out going, “That got too weird for me,” you know?

Q: It’s been going around that Paramount had cold feet about giving ANCHORMAN 2 the green light. What was their concern, and what changed their minds?

It was purely about the fact that since the first one, all these guys have become incredibly successful. They all have high quotes, and rightfully so. On paper, if you’re going to do the movie and pay everyone what they should be paid, it was going to be a certain budget level. We told them that, and they went, “Are you f–king crazy!?” We said all right, we won’t do it, and made THE OTHER GUYS [instead]. People kept asking us and asking us about it, and we went, “Shit, man. We should do this anyway.” We went back to the studio and said we’d [take] a pay cut and we still couldn’t get it right. Then at the last second, they were able to find the right budget level, but it still involved everyone taking 60% pay cuts. But, you know what? We can’t complain. We still get paid ridiculous amounts of money for the jobs we do. Ultimately, it’s so much fun.

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is now playing in theatres nationwide.

Exclusive

Hypable dives deep into Crooked Kingdom with Leigh Bardugo, discussing the art, heart, and future of her dynamic duology Six of Crows.

In addition to Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom, Bardugo is the author of the best-selling Grisha Trilogy, and is currently writing a young-adult Wonder Woman novel.

Crooked Kingdom, due out tomorrow, continues the tale of Kaz Brekker and his motley gang of young (and only occasionally reluctant) criminals. Set in the chilly streets of Ketterdam, Kaz’s crew finds themselves working against the clock in game where the stakes have risen from “seriously high” to “catastrophically personal.”

Read full article

Hypable dives deep into Crooked Kingdom with Leigh Bardugo, discussing the art, heart, and future of her dynamic duology Six of Crows.

In addition to Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom, Bardugo is the author of the best-selling Grisha Trilogy, and is currently writing a young-adult Wonder Woman novel.

Crooked Kingdom, due out tomorrow, continues the tale of Kaz Brekker and his motley gang of young (and only occasionally reluctant) criminals. Set in the chilly streets of Ketterdam, Kaz’s crew finds themselves working against the clock in game where the stakes have risen from “seriously high” to “catastrophically personal.”

Cunningly magical and exactingly scientific, Bardugo’s work celebrates quirks of character, and champions diverse protagonists who challenge readers on every page — which is just about as often as they challenge themselves.

This interview is spoiler-free for Crooked Kingdom.

Interview with Leigh Bardugo

One of the major differences between Six of Crows and the Grisha Trilogy is the way you utilize perspective. How did you decide to structure the duology among multiple points of view?

I knew when I wanted to tell a heist story that I didn’t want to tell it first-person POV. It can be done, if I’m not mistaken, Ally Carter wrote her heist books in first person, but I had a clear idea of how I wanted to break the chapters, and how I wanted to release information. And I feel like that’s what heists and cons are really about.

Both Holly Black, and Ally Carter and I have all commiserated on the challenges of writing a heist, and I can’t remember which one of them said it, but it’s not just about conning the mark — it’s about conning the reader. And I felt like having these different, shifting perspectives would give me more opportunities to do that.

Obviously, that structure is very George R.R. Martin-esque. Did you take any inspiration from the point-of-view structure in A Song of Ice and Fire?

As far as I’m concerned, A Song of Ice and Fire is my touchstone for fantasy, particularly the first three books. And I think there are certain things I’ve definitely taken from [Martin], like the geography as destiny. But also, starting with redshirt who gets killed off is very much a Martin trick! [laughs] But it was also kind of a way to get people up to speed in terms of the powers that existed in the Grisha world and the potential for what [jurda parem] could do… to put everything on the playing field and move into the rest of the action.

six-of-crows1

Did you find much of a difference between writing Six of Crows and writing Crooked Kingdom? Very little time passes between the two books, but almost everybody is in radically different mindsets.

I think the biggest difference in Crooked Kingdom is, in the beginning of Six of Crows, Kaz is assembling the team. So you have some people who know each other, but you have some who don’t, and none of them trust each other — with the exclusion of Kaz and Inej, but even that is trust with conditions.

And then they go through hell together, which naturally changes the way that they interact with each other, and the way that they think about each other. And so that’s really where they are in Crooked Kingdom. Six of Crows has this escalating level of action and interaction between these characters, whereas Crooked Kingdom, we hit the ground running. I think that there’s a lot more progress in those relationships because of what they’ve been through.

Let’s talk about Kaz for a bit — the guy with, ostensibly, all the answers. Where is he emotionally in Crooked Kingdom? How did you decide to employ him in the book?

He comes in a little later, but he’s definitely not used sparingly. It’s interesting, because I’ve always thought of Inej as the heart of the books, and I was talking to a friend recently and she was like, “Crooked Kingdom is much more her book.” And I was like, “Really? I think of Six of Crows as being very much her book!” But whoever reads it, they see a different hero, or a different protagonist, that the arc belongs to them. But I think everybody has pretty steep hill to climb with this one, honestly.

Early in the book, Kaz thinks that, over the course of the three days Inej has been missing, he has murdered the old Kaz Brekker, and now he’s all business. I was really struck by that — I thought he was all business before!

Well, Kaz has some very clear ideas on how you are able to survive in the world. And there are certain tools that have served him very well. It’s not an easy idea — he really believes there are punishments for making yourself vulnerable. And the truth is, in this environment that is 100% true. And that fact does not change throughout the book. That is the reality of the world that they live in. But whether or not Kaz can actually keep his humanity at bay is a different story.

He does start off involved in some fairly brutal business at the beginning of the book. It’s interesting, because you don’t pull many punches in Six of Crows, but in Crooked Kingdom it feels like… well, the gloves are not off, but the gloves are off!

[laughs] That should have been the tagline! “The gloves are not off! Crooked Kingdom!” I’m ready for that movie trailer.

You know, it’s interesting. In some ways, I think that… I don’t think Crooked Kingdom is necessarily a darker book. There are a lot of dark things that happen in it, but it is also… because these characters know each other better, I think… I mean, maybe I’m wrong, you never know when you’ve written a book what people are going to take from it. But for me, there are actually quite a lot of moments of lightness and hijinks. I think I felt freer to let them have certain adventures that were… I don’t want to use the word “zany!” But there’s a pleasure in going a little bit over the top when it comes to heists and cons, and I really wanted to indulge that.

crooked kingdom leigh bardugo interview

And because it is only a duology, there was a lot that had to happen emotionally. And I really am not into being beaten over the head with grimdark. My personality is like, is I sense tension in the room or if something bad has happened, I inevitably make the wisecrack. And I think that that sense of humor imbues the books — or I hope it does.

So would you say that Jesper takes some of that from you?

Yeah, probably! Jesper actually [says] in Crooked Kingdom, that he always thought of himself as a lucky guy. He’d always thought of himself as a generally happy person. And one of the things he has to contend with in this book is digging a little deeper than that, and understanding where his own compulsions come from, and some of the choices that he’s made. And the idea of acknowledging that there’s something beneath this easygoing manner. But I love writing Jesper. A lot.

And which character would you say you find the easiest to write?

You know, it depends on the book. In Six of Crows, the easiest character to write was Matthias, because he’s so dogmatic. He has such strong opinions, and he also has this very mannered, old school fantasy way of thinking. He has this kind of Arthurian bent to him. So he was very easy to write, but I think in terms of the character that was the most fun to write, it was probably Jesper.

In Crooked Kingdom, it was Wylan, because he was the person I was discovering most about as I wrote him. And he’s also in some ways the most YA of all the characters, because he has, for a big chunk of his life, despite the things that were going on at home with his father, has led a fairly sheltered life compared to the rest of these characters.

Speaking of YA, how do you balance the youth of Kaz and co. with their at times very mature exploits? At times, I find myself thinking, “These kids are so young!”

I think of them as sort of like CW teenagers! But I also think, you know, adolescence is a very modern construct, and we tend to forget about that. But I always say, what would Arya Stark be like at 17?

Stabby?

Very stabby. And very cynical! I get why there’s a certain suspension of disbelief required for the characters ages, and in truth, when I go to a high school to speak, or I go to a signing and I meet actual 16 and 17-year-olds, I’m like, “Oh my God! You are but wee children! You are but walking, talking, fetuses! I can’t put you in these horrible circumstances!” [laughs]

But I also think that that’s one of the conventions of YA — and also, look, life is nasty, brutish, and short in the worlds that I create. So unless you are of a very privileged class, and even then, you are probably not going to have a whole lot of time to eke out an existence.

It’s interesting, because Nina undergoes a very adolescent-like experience in Crooked Kingdom, grappling with the ways she has changed. In Six of Crows, she’s like Lady Confidence, and now…

Yeah, Nina’s confidence is shaken in a very fundamental way because of her attachment to her power, and it’s something that she’s never had to question before. And there are other things about her that remain unshaken, and she knows who she is on a lot of levels.

You know, I don’t think there’s anything interesting about keeping a character in one place. And people always talk about, “Oh, who are you going to kill off?” The worst thing you can do is not kill somebody off. One of the lessons that I really took from reading George R.R. Martin is, you take the thing that the character thinks defines them, and then you take it away, and you see what happens. That’s the Jaime Lannister lesson. And that, to me, was the exciting thing to do with some of the characters in the book.

Speaking of taking things from characters, what kind of challenges is Kaz facing internally at the start of Crooked Kingdom?

I think this is the moment when Kaz is deciding who is going to be. Because his life has been all about revenge, and one of the questions that Inej poses to him is not really about his attachment to her. It’s about, what comes after that? Are you just going to become exactly like the man you’re looking to destroy? Because the methods Kaz pursues are not any less ruthless than Pekka Rollins’.

He prides himself on that, actually.

Yes. Although he and Rollins have different ideas about where the lines are drawn. I think this is the book where all of the demons come home to roost. It’s the revenge and redemption book, but it’s also, which demon is going to win, essentially.

Kaz reminds me in a lot of ways of Locke Lamora from Scott Lynch’s Gentleman Bastard series — but ironically, Locke is a lot better-hearted than Kaz.

I actually read Lies of Locke Lamora after I wrote Six of Crows, because I had heard a lot about it, people had been telling me to read it for years. And then I read it, because I was really afraid that it would be so much like Six of Crows that I would be like, “Oh no! What have I done!” But as it turns out, they’re not at all alike.

Locke is very much the mode of the like, kindhearted trickster, as opposed to Kaz, who is like, “I will cut out your kind heart and eat it!”

Do you think of him at all like the Darkling from the Grisha Trilogy? They both have a profoundly diabolical streak.

I think the Darkling is a much more noble character than Kaz. The Darkling may have lost the thread in terms of his humanity and the cost of human life, but he has, ostensibly, noble goals. He’s a patriot, he believes in protecting his people, he’s trying to build a future for the Grisha that isn’t one of persecution. There are a lot of ways to defend the Darkling that don’t work for Kaz, who is very much out for himself, and out for revenge. And revenge is not necessarily a noble goal. It’s something you sympathize with, but it’s not something that is bigger than him.

But I really, [laughs] I really enjoyed writing him. And sometimes he would take me by surprise! And I don’t say that lightly, because I think of myself as very much in control of my characters — they don’t tell me what to do. But I remember writing the scene on the ship with Oomen and thinking, well, what is Kaz going to do here? And it was sort of like Kaz took over, and was like, “I’m telling you what I’m going to do!”

I took a great deal of pleasure in writing the details of that scene, and it’s weird, because I always know when people get to that scene. I know what page it is, because they’re like, “Page 158! Ahhh!” And the weird thing for me is, I’m like, I think it’s kind of romantic! He’ll poke a guy’s eye out for you, baby, and then throw him in the drink!

It is very sweet, in a murderous way. Were there any similar moments where you thought Kaz went overboard? Or did you ever have to push him?

I pulled back, actually. In Crooked Kingdom there was a torture scene that I ended up taking out, because it was just too much. It’s not that it was implausible for the character, but there was already enough brutality happening. And I think sometimes we’re pulled toward these things because they have a certain amount of emotional resonance in them, and high stakes in them.

But I think we also, somehow the idea of being dark, or edgy, or gritty, has come to mean that you’re somehow more legitimate or the story is weightier. And I try to sometimes consciously push against that, because I want this world to feel real, I want it to feel like the peril is real, but we do write for young people. And I want my readers to be able to follow me there without feeling hopeless.

Looking at the bigger picture, how did it feel to craft this story as a duology?

Weird! [laughs] I’m honestly a real lover of structure. I believe very firmly in the resonances of narrative structure, and to me they kind of provide a safety net for writing. I can look at my own stories and say, okay, well, this was squishy here, or this moment needed to come sooner, or this wasn’t a strong enough twist. And to me, the natural structure for a story is three acts. And I think that’s still the story that got told, it just got told in two books. That second act did not belong to it’s own book. But it’s funny, I sort of thought of it — it just always felt like this shape.

And for the characters who survive, there could continue to be stories, but for this particular moment, this is the moment where we pause with them. And in some ways, it just felt like it always had this shape, is the best way I can put it.

I love the duology format — there’s a natural urgency to it, I think, and that serves the heist story particularly well.

It does, it does. And I’ve always sort of thought of these books as, when I set out to write them, I told my editor — I gave her a proposal, but I said, I’ve never written a book like this before. So I don’t know if it’s one book, or if it’s two books, or if it’s three books, and we’ll just have to play it by ear. And at the end of the first book, I was like, okay. I can tie up all of the plot-things easy, there’s a very natural way to do this. I was like, but the emotional things I wanted to do with these characters, they went deeper and darker than I expected them to, and there’s no way they can earn the endings that I think they deserve in one book.

It’s true, at the end of Six of Crows it feels like the characters think they’ve reached their endings, and they haven’t.

I think too, that’s what makes heists interesting. There’s the fun side of them, but the thing that really makes them exciting, particularly in books as opposed to film is what the challenges are that the characters have to overcome. People enter in, these are characters who appear highly competent at the beginning of Six of Crows, and then they face these challenges… that undermine that competence, and that’s what makes the heist exciting.

It’s not that like, OH! This is happening! And this is blowing up! Or this person got caught! It’s what they have to overcome personally within the story. And for Crooked Kingdom, that was kind of doubly true, because they have this whole new set of challenges that are coming out them, and they’ve just had their armor torn to bits, so they’re a lot more vulnerable to those challenges.

So moving forward, what are you working on now?

Well, I’m working on Wonder Woman right now, and I have a couple of other projects that I can’t talk about yet, but one is one that I have been wanting to write for a very long time. And some other things cooking!

What is it like writing Wonder Woman?

You know, it’s really very joyful! The strange thing about it is that I have just come off the heels of writing these very morally compromised characters, and Diana has her own challenges to contend with, but she is at her heart a very kind hero. And it’s one of the things I think people love so much about her, is that she has this deep empathy, and this deep kindness.

She comes from a culture where that is valued, and where the suffering of others means something. And so it’s been really fun to write her! And I feel like I’m in a better mood! I’ll come out of my writing day, and I’m like, oh, I feel good! And then I’m like, maybe it’s because I wasn’t writing about murder and torture!

So it’s been great. I feel like there’s obviously a tremendous weight of expectations that are attached to the character and I want to do right by the character, but I’m really glad I’m doing it. I don’t think there’s any other character I would have wanted to put my other work aside for than Wonder Woman.

Did you like the trailer?

I LOVED IT!

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo is available tomorrow from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and your local independent bookstore.

What are your top theories for ‘Crooked Kingdom’?

Anyone who received a mole or rat Patronus in J.K. Rowling’s new quiz is getting a little reassurance from the Harry Potter author.

Last week Pottermore took the fandom by storm when they debuted the long-awaited Patronus quiz. It’s a next-level personality quiz — it’s beautiful and provides a real sense of magic. Overall, we love it!

There’s just one problem: Many people are getting Patronuses they don’t particularly like. After all this waiting, these poor fans got stuck with a creature that they’re allergic to (cats), are scared of (rats), or they simply don’t like (moles).

Read full article

Anyone who received a mole or rat Patronus in J.K. Rowling’s new quiz is getting a little reassurance from the Harry Potter author.

Last week Pottermore took the fandom by storm when they debuted the long-awaited Patronus quiz. It’s a next-level personality quiz — it’s beautiful and provides a real sense of magic. Overall, we love it!

There’s just one problem: Many people are getting Patronuses they don’t particularly like. After all this waiting, these poor fans got stuck with a creature that they’re allergic to (cats), are scared of (rats), or they simply don’t like (moles).

Over the weekend Rowling fielded a couple of complaints by offering the upside to getting a rat or mole Patronus.

Rat Patronus explanation:

Mole Patronus explanation:

All told, there are over 140 Patronuses. Can she get to work on writing reassuring comments on every single one of ’em?

In a press release announcing the Patronus quiz, Pottermore said that “further new information and features will be revealed about the spell and its outcomes” in the “months to come.” Hopefully that means we really are getting detailed explanations.

Related: Hypable’s staff reacts to their Patronus results and what they mean

Exclusive

At Copenhagen Comic-Con, Hypable caught up with Game of Thrones actress Kerry Ingram for a chat about Shireen’s horrific death scene, Netflix, and horseback riding.

It seemed like a full-circle moment when I got to sit down with Kerry Ingram and tell her just how much Shireen Baratheon’s death upset me. Even on a show like Game of Thrones, which makes an art out of assaulting its viewers’ senses, that particular scene felt like it crossed a line — and that was just my reaction, watching safely from behind a computer screen! How must the actress herself feel, having to actually act out her character’s death at such a young age?

This led to a wider musing about what Game of Thrones does to protect its child actors from the horrific things their characters experience. (Ingram is now 17, but was only barely in her mid-teens when that scene was filmed.) I also wondered if she ever went back and watched the scene. Turned out she watched it live with the rest of us — but, luckily, she was able to find the fun side of the situation: Outraged reactions like my own. The irony is sweet.

Read full article

At Copenhagen Comic-Con, Hypable caught up with Game of Thrones actress Kerry Ingram for a chat about Shireen’s horrific death scene, Netflix, and horseback riding.

It seemed like a full-circle moment when I got to sit down with Kerry Ingram and tell her just how much Shireen Baratheon’s death upset me. Even on a show like Game of Thrones, which makes an art out of assaulting its viewers’ senses, that particular scene felt like it crossed a line — and that was just my reaction, watching safely from behind a computer screen! How must the actress herself feel, having to actually act out her character’s death at such a young age?

This led to a wider musing about what Game of Thrones does to protect its child actors from the horrific things their characters experience. (Ingram is now 17, but was only barely in her mid-teens when that scene was filmed.) I also wondered if she ever went back and watched the scene. Turned out she watched it live with the rest of us — but, luckily, she was able to find the fun side of the situation: Outraged reactions like my own. The irony is sweet.

At Copenhagen Comic-Con 2016 I got to ask Kerry Ingram all this and more, while also diving into more fun topics like Shireen and Arya’s hypothetical take-over of Westeros, and Ingram’s new Netflix series, on which she plays ‘Becky with the good hair’ and gets to do lots of horseback riding. Watch the full interview below:

Ingram’s new Netflix series stars Jaylen Barron as Zoë, a 15-year-old American girl whose stay at Bright Field Stables in the U.K. leads her to form an unexpected friendship with a mysterious horse named Raven.

The Lime Pictures drama also stars Celine Buckens and Natalie Gumede. It was created by Anna McCleery and Vicki Lutas, and is tentatively expected to premiere on Netflix in 2017.

Follow Kerry Ingram on Twitter to keep up with her latest projects. Read more Game of Thrones news right here on Hypable.

This interview was done in collaboration with the Danish entertainment site Kulturbunkeren. Thanks to Copenhagen Comic-Con for making it possible!