'Burt Wonderstone': Steve Carell is No. 1 with a mullet
05:00 AM, Dec 19, 2012
Steve Carell has finally met his mullet.
The former clean-cut Office star goes all out on the hair front as a flamboyant and fabulously clothed Vegas magician in the comedy The Incredible Burt Wonderstone. It’s due March 15, and the first trailer hits theaters Friday.
“This is a first, even in real life,” says Carell, 50. “I never achieved mullet-ness in all of my years. It’s pretty fantastic, isn’t it? There is actually a multitude of scintillating looks that I rock in this movie, from the mullet to the lion’s mane to a frosted coif.”
Hair is a big part of the Las Vegas magic world, where Carell’s Burt Wonderstone and his loyal partner, Anton (Steve Buscemi), rule for decades.
“This is definitely a wig picture,” says director Don Scardino. “The hair budget was killer. Jim Carrey wears a really outrageous one.”
The arrival of the long-haired street magician Steve Gray (Carrey) disrupts Wonderstone’s perch at the top of the illusionist heap.
“He’s the very edgy magician who begins to pull the attention from Burt and Anton,” Carell says. “He’s my nemesis.”
The competition forces Wonderstone to take on more outrageous tricks, such as attempting to spend days elevated above the Las Vegas Strip in a glass box.
“Filming that was more unnerving than I expected,” Carell says. “The scariest part was that you could look straight down below you. (Buscemi) was at least as scared as I was. But we had fun.”
This trick’s disastrous failure leads to the breakup of the Wonderstone duo and sends Burt spiraling professionally until he hits bottom: nursing home entertainment.
Carell went all out for Wonderstone, removing his chest hair to allow for many plunging necklines (“my pecs make a cameo in this film”) and undergoing weekly spray tans.
“That’s among the most humiliating of experiences,” he says. “To be in your bikini underwear and be sprayed head-to-toe in a glossy bronze hue. But this is a very self-centered, arrogant sort of a peacock, and I felt he should look that way.”
The cast also trained with the film’s consultant, illusionist David Copperfield, who designed an elaborate hangman body-switch trick.
“It’s a great trick, very impressive,” says Scardino, who notes that the true Vegas master was also struck by the great hair onset. “Copperfield took note of the hair changes and said, ‘I know them all, I went through the same ones.’ “