Starting Sunday, Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey will join forces on the small screen in the highly anticipated new HBO series True Detective. The eight-episode show is pure gritty drama, a twisty tale about two mismatched cops – a family man with some hidden secrets (Harrelson) and a darkly pessimistic loner (McConaughey) – who are pursuing a mysterious serial killer in the Louisiana backwoods. But despite the grim subject matter, when EW interviewed McConaughey and Harrelson together for our Winter TV Preview issue (on stands now), the two – who’ve been friends for nearly 20 years – were all laughs, to the point that we had to ask: Why haven’t you guys ever made a buddy comedy together?
The idea has certainly come up before, McConaughey says. “People get around us for five minutes and they go, ‘We’ve got to get these two in something where they can play off each other.’ Because that’s what Woody and I do comedically very well.” Harrelson is just waiting for the right idea to come along. “I’d love to do a buddy comedy with Matthew – he’s about the funniest guy I know,” he says. “It’ll happen. But, you know, it’s just got to be something great. It can’t be something silly.”
If you ask McConaughey, though, all the two really need to get a buddy comedy going is someone to operate the camera and point them in a general direction, and they can take care of the rest: “We’ll handle all the dialogue,” he says. “All you’ve got to do is just tell us, ‘OK, here are your characters: There’s a secret bowling ball in a house in Malibu, and it may be David Geffen’s house, and he’s there having a bar mitzvah. Go!’ Don’t rehearse it. Don’t let Geffen and them know we’re going to be filming. Let us work our way past the guards. Just make sure you’ve got a large mag in the camera and record.”
A guerrilla-style Harrelson-McConaughey bowling-ball-heist comedy set during a bar mitzvah at David Geffen’s house – who wouldn’t want to see that movie? Get on it, Hollywood!