It's a fact of life for an actor/writer/director after doing a movie: Just before the film debuts, you meet with the press and answer questions like, "What was it like to work with Matthew Modine?" and "Before playing a mime, did you meet with any mimes to prepare?" It's a part of the biz, so to speak, and the process is generally unremarkable.
Except when it isn't. Whether the interview becomes awkward, hilarious, charming or weird, it also always becomes magical, as we saw when the Internet exploded this week over Mila Kunis's playful flirtation with a quirky British chap.
Here are the 10 best examples of said junket magic. (You may notice a lack of "Between Two Ferns," which could take up half the list, but we consider those more as "skits" than actual press interviews.)
10. Quentin Tarantino Shuts a Butt Down
Here is an increasingly testy exchange between interviewer Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Quentin Tarantino where Tarantino is displeased with the line of questioning, ultimately culminating in the "Django Unchained" filmmaker telling Guru-Murthy that he is going to "shut (his) butt down." Guru-Murthy had pretty much asked Tarantino if he felt responsible for all world violence since the early '90s, and Tarantino got so frustrated, he turned to discussing butts — specifically, shutting them down. A must-watch.
9. Chase Whale's Interview with Tim and Eric Doesn't Go Awesome Great Job
Sometimes, people just want to f**k with you, as interviewer Chase Whale found out when he sat down with Tim and Eric, and though it was probably super-awkward for Chase, it's great for all of us. After a few questions that they've deemed unimpressive, Tim and Eric finally end up walking out of the interview when Chase asks who would win between the two of them in a thumb war (Vegas has it as -170 for Eric). This is the type of interview that if it was a ruse and Chase was in on it, we never want to find out (so please no one tell us, thanks).
8. Christian Bale Sings 'Powerpuff' Theme
When you're Peter Travers and you've been one of the hottest film critics in the game for 694 years, you can pretty much do whatever you want — like, for example, get Christian Bale to sing the theme song for the Powerpuff Girls, as he did when promoting his Academy Award-winning performance in "The Fighter" with Mark Wahlberg. Bale follows up his singing with the explanation that it's the show his daughter loves, but has anyone actually seen Christian Bale's daughter? And wouldn't it be better if Christian Bale was exactly who he was — movie star, Batman, Patrick Bateman, etc. — but also unabashedly loved Powerpuff Girls? So we're just going to go ahead and assume he watches it himself, because this country is free.
7. Tommy Lee Jones is Unimpressed With Your Entire Life
Don't come at Tommy Lee Jones with your weak-ass questions.
6. Mila Kunis Berates a Russian Reporter in Russian
Doing press for "Friends with Benefits" in Moscow, Justin Timberlake is asked by a reporter "why [he is] doing movies now," which would have been hilariously tongue-in-cheek had Galifianakis asked him on "Between Two Ferns," but here it's merely hilarious. Not to co-star and Ukraine-native Mila Kunis, however, who takes issue with the question and, in Russian, sarcastically asks the reporter what she would rather have Timberlake do instead. Everyone subsequently laughs at the reporter for her question, and your emotions alternate between feeling bad for her and being turned on by Kunis's fluent Russian.
5. Michael Cera Gets Double-Teamed with Questions
Shameless plug alert: When Moviefone's (and now NextMovie's own!) Kevin Polowy and Asylum.com's Anthony Layser both wished to interview Michael Cera for his film "Youth in Revolt," but as there was time for only one interview, the two journalists took to drastic measures and agreed to conduct a dueling interview with Cera, each offering rapid-fire questions and constantly interrupting the other. The results, egged on by Cera's inherent awkwardly comedic personality, may have been hilariously disorganized, but at least they both got their interview.
4. Zach Galifianakis is Zach-Galifianakissed by Gordon Keith
On "Between Two Ferns," Zach Galifianakis goes out of his way to make guests uncomfortable by asking them to choose their favorite child or tickling them on the thigh. Here, interviewer Gordon Keith turns the ferns on Galifianakis as he promotes his 2010 film "It's Kind of a Funny Story," asking him questions like "Did you know Emma Roberts before you met her?" and "Can you compare and contrast 'It's Kind of a Funny Story' to every other film?" Watch as Galifianakis struggles with his own Galifianakis-isms as he is Galifianakissed to death.
3. Mila Kunis is Macked by Reporter, She Goes Along With It
Just earlier this week, a frightened (intentionally?) young BBC reporter interviewed Mila Kunis and couldn't get over that he's interviewing Mila Kunis. He wants to ask her questions about "Oz the Great and Powerful," and does initially, but then goes into a stream of consciousness rant about how hot she is and whether or not he's doing a good job and if she wants to hang out sometime. It's a total mess, and yet the interviewer gives off a charmingly befuddled Hugh Grant-ish vibe that has wooed many an un-expecting lady in the past, and Mila proves no exception. UPDATE: The two are now married and expecting.
2. Josh Horowitz Americanizes the Cast of 'Harry Potter'
MTV News' Josh Horowitz sat down with the cast of the "Harry Potter" movies to make them say various Americanisms with an American accent so we could all laugh at their efforts; sadly, we all end up laughing at ourselves as we realize how much of our culture is focused on the Olive Garden, Charlie Sheen and Glenn Beck (at least circa 2010). Controversially, we're going to give the "Most Accurate" award to Tom Felton in a close race over Rupert Grint, with Emma Watson coming in at a respectable third and Daniel Radcliffe a distant last. Sorry, Dan.
1. Megan Fox is Bagged
You know how when you had a crush on a girl in kindergarten, you might make fun of her as a defense mechanism? Witness Matt Zaller make Megan Fox wear a paper bag over her head as he interviews Johnny Simmons, who is sitting next to her as they promote "Jennifer's Body" together. You know how in kindergarten when you made fun of that girl as a defense mechanism because you liked her and she didn't understand so she kicked you in the shin? Fox reacts with the adult version of that, pretty much not feeling the stunt at all. Now comes the apology and the kiss near the oak tree behind the playground.