The Watch - Jonah Hill, Ben Stiller, Richard Ayoade and Vince Vaughn
Franklin (Jonah Hill), Evan (Ben Stiller), Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade) and Bob (Vince Vaughn) © 2012 Twentieth Century Fox

Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, and British newcomer, Richard Ayoade, team up for the new comedy The Watch, playing four civic-minded citizens who form a neighborhood watch when one of their friends is murdered, only to discover they are facing the invasion of bloodthirsty aliens.

Have any of you worked together before doing The Watch?

Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade), Bob (Vince Vaughn), Evan (Ben Stiller) and Franklin (Jonah Hill) © 2012 Twentieth Century Fox

Ben: Jonah and I did a scene in Night in the Museum together. We had so much fun doing that.

Jonah: He had fun.

Ben: You said you had fun, too.

Jonah: Yeah, I’m joking, we had an amazing time.

Ben: Vince and I had a really fun time working on Dodgeball together. It had been a while for us, so it was exciting to have a chance to do something new together and being in a totally different kind of relationship, too.

And I met Richard because I had been an executive producer of Submarine.

Jonah: Richard and Ben are both filmmakers and Submarine was Richard’s debut film, and Ben Stiller presented it.

Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade), Evan (Ben Stiller), Bob (Vince Vaughn) and Franklin (Jonah Hill) surround a neighborhood skater kid (Johnny Pemberton), whom “The Watch” suspects is up to …something © 2012 Twentieth Century Fox

Ben: I actually went to every theater and introduced it.

Richard: I’ve never been in a film before.

Jonah: Is this your first movie ever, really?

Richard: Not really. I think maybe [I worked on one] for a day. That’s as much as anyone could stand previously. My wife said, and she’s right, it’s going to look like I won a competition to be in a film with movie stars.

There were several days when I was like, “Why are Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and Jonah Hill looking at me? Oh! I’m in a scene with them.’

Vince: Richard is so funny. He brought such an original voice, had great ideas and is just funny in the movie.

Vince, you played an over protected dad in this. Did it help you for being mentally prepared for what’s ahead in your future?

Vince: My daughter is just twenty months now, so I’m a long way away from that. But for the character, I found that clearly he has a real friendship with his daughter. I liked that you could tell that they had a real nice thing between them, but it’s being tested.

Thankfully I’m a long way from answering any of those questions as far as being protective.

Jonah, you do both dramatic and comedic roles. Do you have a preference?

A neighborhood skater kid (Johnny Pemberton) easily gets the better of his hapless interrogators, Evan (Ben Stiller) and Franklin (Jonah Hill) © 2012 Twentieth Century Fox

Jonah: I really like doing both. I can say, [this was] the hardest I’ve ever laughed just being around a group of people while making a movie. On a drama set that generally is not the case.

These guys are people who have made me laugh for a long time, people who I’ve learned a lot from watching their movies before I was ever in movies.

Ben: When you were a child.

Jonah: Yeah, when you guys were in your forties, I was four or five. Ben and Vince are very important people to me from learning about comedies growing up. So, to get to work with them was great.

Since Hollywood likes to put actors in boxes, is it nice to make people laugh while also fighting off aliens?

Ben: I feel like first and foremost the movie is a comedy, but the action in the film should be believable. You should believe the aliens [are real], but just enough that you can have the fun of the movie.

I feel like when people come to a movie like this, they want to laugh and they are not necessarily looking for us to be these kickass hero guys. They just want to feel like it makes sense for the movie, and the comedy of it.

Franklin (Jonah Hill), Evan (Ben Stiller), Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade) and Bob (Vince Vaughn) © 2012 Twentieth Century Fox

Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter. More by Judy Sloane