“It’s got a good director, Peter Segal. Wonderful director. The writers were great. The producers were young and aggressive and smart.” If you were wondering what Get Smart co-creator and all-around legend Mel Brooks thought of the people behind the upcoming big screen adaptation, there you have it. Brooks sat down earlier this week with Patrick Day from the LA Times to talk about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, but the conversation quickly turned to this latest incarnation of Get Smart. As well, as these things always do, it would all ultimately lead back to talking about Spaceballs.
But even though, as Brooks explained, everyone always wants to talk about Spaceballs, the talk of the town these days should be Steve Carell in the role of Maxwell Smart. “…the brilliance is Steve Carell,” he said in the interview. “To choose a guy who’s right in the Don Adams groove. You couldn’t get a better guy than Steve Carell. And yet he doesn’t do Don Adams. He does none of his delivery. He just does Steve Carell.”
This non-Don Adams impersonation that Carell has brought to the table for Get Smart has been an interesting sticking point for many fans. In fact, readers of this site have already begun to look negatively toward this adaptation, saying that it does not feel the same as it did with the 1960s television show that starred Don Adams. In reality, this new version of “Get Smart” is just that — a new version of “Get Smart”. In this new version, filmmaker Peter Segal sought to pay homage to the classic Brooks show, but do it in a way that is new, modern and features, as Brooks describes, Steve Carell doing Steve Carell. And for fans of Carell (I’m looking at you, “Office” fans), this is by no means a bad thing.
In the interview, Brooks ventured off into talking about his son Max, whose “Zombie Survival Guide” has become a great success, as well as what it was like to be a comedy writer back in the 50s. But as they always do, the interview did swing over to talking about Spaceballs a bit, giving Brooks an opportunity to remind us of the Spaceballs animated show that is due out on G4 in the fall. As for Get Smart, it hits theaters on June 20th.
Read the entire interview with Mel Brooks here: LA Times: Q&A with Mel Brooks