In Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, beloved actor Steve Carell plays Dodge, a man whose wife leaves him upon news that an asteroid is barrelling toward earth. Dodge then sets out to find his high school sweetheart accompanied by his whimsical young neighbor, played by Keira Knightley. Carell, whose breakout role came in 2005’s The 40 Year Old Virgin, can demand the pick of the litter when it comes to comedy roles, but he says there was something special about Seeking a Friend.

“I read the script and it was one of those scripts which stuck with me, because it was just that — it was a mixture of comedy and tragedy,” Carell said in our exclusive video. “A very dark comedy, certainly. And it had this sort of metaphorical feeling to it. How people press on looking at their potential doom. What people do, and how people align themselves, and where their priorities are.”

Carell added that playing a man with only three weeks left on earth was a welcome challenge. “Because no matter where my character is, no matter what he’s doing, and even if he’s forgotten about this news, even momentarily, it’s definitely informing his life and there’s that sense of it always hanging over the character,” remarks Carell.

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, also starring Adam Brody and Connie Britton, hits theaters June 22.


Q: You are a very good actor, very funny too. My question is if there was any improv in this movie because I know you are a good improviser. Also will you ever return to the office. I miss you on that show. - ConnorTorres
Q: How was your approach to this film different than a standard comedy? - Uinterview User

You know what? I read the script and it was one of those scripts which stuck with me, because it was just that — it was a mixture of comedy and tragedy. A very dark comedy, certainly. And it had this sort of metaphorical feeling to it— how people press on looking at their potential doom, what people do, and how people align themselves and where their priorities are. So, to me that was really interesting. And it wasn’t necessarily to approach it as a comedy or a drama; it was just to approach it kind of honestly. That was my hope.

Q: What was the most challenging scene with your co-star Keira Knightley? - Uinterview User

Boy, there wasn’t one that pops out as the most challenging because she’s such a good actor. I think that no matter what scene you’re doing with her she tends to make it fairly easy. Because she’s very present, she’s very — she’s just so good and such a giving actor that she made that aspect of it very, very easy.

Q: What would you do if it were the end of the world? - Uinterview User

End of the world, I would probably do a press junket. (laughs)

Q: Or who would you want to be with at the end of the world? - Uinterview User

Oh, for sure I’d spend my time with my family — my wife and my kids. This is such a morbid thought to think: Come here everyone let’s sit on the couch, eh! I like to think — and that’s one of the things I liked about the movie is that it’s not a depressing movie. It’s really celebrating people’s lives and the joy in that. And to try and embrace what you have. So, I think that’s what I would do. And I would have some monster meals!

Q: How is this movie different than doing a television show like 'The Office'? - LaurenRife

I think it’s all sort of the same approach, you just try to go in. And I think about making a character human and believable. You don’t want it to be mannered. You know, the comedic aspects of it, you don’t want to point, necessarily, to the comedy. You just want them to sort of spring from the situation. So, I think it’s the same approach. This movie definitely had a feel to it that other things did not. Because no matter where my character is, no matter what he’s doing, and even if he’s forgotten about this news, even momentarily, it’s definitely informing his life and there’s that sense of it always hanging over the character. So, just as an acting exercise it was fun, because I always had that sense that this guy is going through something with a dark cloud looming over his head.