It was summer 1999 when four small-town Michigan boys began a quest to lose their virginity in “American Pie.” In the years that have passed, Jim (Jason Biggs) and Michelle (Alyson Hannigan) married while Kevin (Thomas Ian Nicholas) and Vicky (Tara Reid) said goodbye. Oz (Chris Klein) and Heather (Mena Suvari) grew apart, but Finch (Eddie Kay Thomas) still longs for Stifler’s Mom (Jennifer Coolidge). And Stifler (Seann William Scott) remains the same as he ever was. Now, in “American Reunion,” the outrageously funny fourth entry in the American Pie franchise, these lifelong friends have come home as adults to reminisce about – and get inspired by – the hormonal teens they once were.
MoviesOnline sat down with Jason Biggs and Alyson Hannigan to talk about what it was like reuniting with the original cast and resuming their roles now as a married couple fighting to keep their sex life alive. They told us why the writer/directors decided it was time for Jason’s junk to finally be revealed after having been such a major player in the American Pie franchise. They also discussed how much fun they had doing the dominatrix scene, which themes in the storyline resonated with them the most, and why they felt Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg did justice to Adam Herz’s original screenplay and the characters he created.
Q: Jason, what was the conversation like about how you would show your junk? And Alyson, now that two of your onscreen husbands, Jason Segal and Jason Biggs, have both shown their goods, do we have you to blame for that?
AH: I guess.
JB: She brings it out in guys. I don’t know what it is.
AH: Obviously, I think with this Jason, Jason Biggs, it was about time because we’ve spent three movies listening to and talking about it and the pie got to see it. So it was about time we all got to see it.
JB: The penis has been a major player in the American Pie franchise.
Q: Its own character?
JB: It has been its own character.
AH: It’s like the Rosebud.
JB: Yeah. Nailed it. So it was about time.
AH: We needed the reveal.
JB: Yeah, the conversation went something like I kept pushing the guys, Jon and Hayden, our writer/directors, for that pie scene. What’s going to be the pie scene this time, guys? Some earlier drafts felt like it was missing. I gave them a carte blanche, just a blank canvas. I was like “Guys, I will literally do anything as long as it makes sense in the context of the film and for the character and as long as I think it’s funny. Jon wrote me one day and said “Would you be willing to show your…?” I was like “Yes, absolutely, if it’s funny!” I laughed out loud and they pitched me the idea and I was like “That sounds great.”
AH: And as far as the technicalities of doing the scene, which was my first day of shooting by the way, …
JB: Yeah! Welcome back to the franchise, Alyson! Here’s my penis.
AH: Yay! It was quite technically difficult because I had to sort of become his eyes because he couldn’t lean down and see because then he wasn’t squishing it enough.
JB: It was not easy.
AH: And there are so many positions and we had to decide which one was the funniest.
JB: Yeah. Two o’clock, or the Eiffel Tour, or the Sydney Harbor Bridge, or the straight-up hot dog bun.
AH: The dead insect on the windshield.
JB: Exactly. Yup. The drugged astronaut. The purple nerple. The options were endless. I should also tell you that I used to star in Puppetry of the Penis in Sydney, Australia when it first came out, so that’s why we had so many options. I was very skilled.
AH: It was good you took out all the piercings for the scene.
JB: Yeah, two of the holes closed. Bummer!
AH: Not the hole he wanted to close either.
JB: Yeah, that’s right. I pee through my mouth now. It’s very strange.
AH: We’re a little punchy. Sorry!
Q: Can you talk about the horny aspect of your character’s personality? Also, do you think that men are naturally attracted to barely legal girls?
JB: Well let me answer the first part of that question first while I think of a politically correct answer for the second part. I love that Jim has grown up, and Jim and Michelle are married now, and he’s got a kid and he means well. But, in his mind, he has grown up. The problem is he finds himself, much like in the first film, and frankly all of the American Pie films, he finds himself in a situation where he’s once again sexually frustrated. When Jim is sexually frustrated, he ends up making some poor decisions. When he makes some poor decisions…
AH: We make a movie.
JB: We make a film. When we make a film, we get rich. When we get rich, …. No, I’m kidding. The thing that I love now is that Jim is 31. How old would he be? 30, 31? We’ve been trying to figure out the age of our characters. We’re not exactly sure.
AH: We didn’t do much research.
JB: 1899, so carry the one…old! And so, the truth is, after you’re 30 years old, men still masturbate. There are still sexual problems that happen, that arise for guys.
AH: Jason, do you want to tell us something?
JB: I’m masturbating right now as we speak, right under the table. Is that what you meant?
JB: I don’t even know what your question was.
Q: What about men who go after barely legal young girls?
JB: Young girls. That’s what you want to get to. You sick, sick man.
AH: It’s a true/false answer.
AH: I think it’s more that this beautiful woman almost…
JB: Used to be …
AH: It’s like she’s aggressively coming onto him.
JB: There’s that. I also think the fact that she used to maybe be [attracted to Jim]…but I don’t know. Is that an element? Or is it the fact that she’s also just turned 18 in high school so there’s something about the just legal aspect of it. I don’t know. I’m married. I’m not attracted to any other woman ever.
AH: Good answer.
JB: I heard she showed her boobs in this movie. Is that true? Did that happen? I had to turn my eyes.
AH: He was just looking straight into her eyes.
JB: Into her heart and soul.
Q: Jason, when you read the dominatrix scene, were you like “Is that all you got, guys? I’m Jason Biggs!”?
JB: Yeah, I’m like “C’mon guys, step up to the plate. Don’t be a pussy. Let’s do this. Alright?” Sorry about my language. It’s that time of day. I’m also that type of person always so… Actually it’s funny because the dominatrix scene was in the earlier drafts and I was like “This is great. This is funny. I think that’ll be really funny. But what’s the next step? There’s more to do here.” And so, if there was any sort of concern I had with the very, very early drafts, and I mean a minor concern, because when I tell you that this script was in the shape it was, it blew my mind. Jon and Hayden came in and I read the script and I was like “Did these guys write the first ‘American Pie’?” They did such justice I felt to Adam Herz’s original screenplay and the characters that he had originally created and I think it comes across on screen. I feel like this movie is more like the first one than any of the other ones.
AH: They were like the perfect combination of the Weitz Brothers and Adam.
JB: Actually they were. The Weitz Brothers directed the first film and Adam wrote it. I’d say that’s pretty accurate. So, if there was anything, I was just okay, let’s keep [going]. How much further can we go? That’s one of the biggest challenges because now that you have these characters who are in their thirties, it’s tougher to credibly find these situations where you can push these boundaries and put them in these ridiculous scenarios that are believable, aren’t gratuitous, that aren’t awkward or just illegal in some way. I mean, they’re older. Some of the things they did in the previous films would be not acceptable for a 30-year-old. They had to update it, if you will, so that’s why the penis scene, I think, works organically, organ being the appropriate root word there.
Q: Alyson, in that scene, was it natural to you that Michelle would become the dominatrix?
AH: Yeah. I mean, she was in the first film. (to Jason) Right? I mean she pretty much…
JB: She was. You made me your bitch.
AH: Absolutely. Still are.
JB: I always will be.
AH: So yeah, I definitely am, and especially if she is feeling responsible for letting the sparks fade a little on their sexual life because she’s been so focused on being a mom. So she sees this weekend as a way to reinvigorate their lives and remind themselves of where they started. So yeah, definitely.
Q: There are a lot of themes in the movie that are very relatable, real life problems. What did you gravitate towards the most?
AH: Definitely balancing the married relationship now with parenthood I could relate to. My situation wasn’t as extreme as Jim and Michelle’s, of course, but when my daughter was first born, we were definitely all consumed with just her. It was probably like quite a few months where we realized ok wait, we do need to actually set aside a date night instead of trying to fit it in between diaper changes or whatever. But you just get so wrapped up and it was brilliant and there was no problem there, but it was like okay, we can’t do this for 18 years. We need to still have our couple times so we try to have a date night every week, even if it’s just going to dinner and having a dinner that’s not interrupted by a 3-year-old. That’s just nice.
Q: What about you, Jason? Was there anything that you related to such as the dad/son relationship or somebody still trying to find themselves as an adult?
JB: That’s certainly a good one. For me, the biggest change in my life personally since the last film has been getting married. Getting married for me has kind of shifted my focus in such a profound way. You just realize you can’t be so selfish anymore. There’s someone else. And it’s not just about the other person, but it’s about the relationship as well. Your priorities are realigned. Now the next step will be kids and I can’t imagine what that’s going to do, but that’ll be a game changer. It’s just interesting to see Jim wrestle with those same sort of big ideas where it’s not just about him anymore. You think about the first movie, the whole movie rests upon how all these guys just want to get laid. It’s very me, me, me. Get me laid. You mentioned Jim and his dad too. That’s really interesting. That’s a great part of the film for me. I’ve actually found this as I’ve gotten older too that my dynamic with my parents has changed quite a bit. There’s a beautiful moment in the film. It’s funny because a lot of my favorite moments in this movie are not really the funny ones but the more poignant, sweeter moments. Actually, that’s always been the case with the whole franchise. I love when Jim offers his dad advice in this movie and it’s kind of flipped. I think that’s really, really cool. That’s another genius thing, I think, that our writer-director guys came up with. I found that my relationship with my old man has changed considerably. As an adult, it’s a different thing. It’s like he’s a new person to me and it’s great. We have a totally different relationship than when I was growing up as you’re supposed to. But that resonates with me quite a bit. That’s cool.
Q: You guys are so close to this franchise. You’ve been there since the beginning. Are there any characters that you wanted closure for and when you saw the script you said “Oh yes, I’ve been waiting for that to happen”?
AH: I love the MILF guys’ storyline. I love that we really don’t know why they broke up but they’re back together.
JB: And when we say ‘broke up’… Listen, Johnny Cho plays the role in a way that maybe is a little…I don’t know what you guys thought…but we’re not saying they were gay. We’re not saying that they broke up.
AH: No, just their friendship.
JB: We never intended that. I mean, they’re buddies.
AH: We weren’t saying that they were in a relationship.
JB: Right. But people have been questioning. I’ve heard that people have been like “Is he gay or…?” And then, when you just said broken up, I was like I wonder if people are going to think that’s what we’re trying to imply.
Q: Maybe they had a girl come between them? Or a MILF?
JB: Yeah! Maybe they had a MILF come between them!
“American Reunion” opens in theaters on April 6th.